I got a feedback after the job interview I attended recently, and one of the reasons to reject my application was apparently I didn't show enough enthusiasm. I was pretty enthusiastic about the role (software engineer in finance industry) and I tried to show it by:

  • mentioning my academic background (BSc) in economics
  • talking about joy with working in finance industry for the last couple of years
  • asking a lot of business-related questions and showing my knowledge in this domain (the company doesn't expect you know anything, so I assumed it will be a huge benefit)
  • saying that interview was fun and really enjoyed the tasks

I try to reexamine things I said during the process that could led them to say I'm not enthusiastic:

  • switching with position for what I was recruiting after the call with HR
  • I mentioned I am looking for a new job mainly because my partner and I want to relocate to the city where the company is located (as opposed to "I'm exited with what they do")
  • I told I also interview with other companies (as opposed to "only with them")
  • I told during one of the interviews that I liked one part of the question better, and that the other one was new for me and ok
  • I asked them how they think they're differ from other companies

Was any of that unprofessional? How can I show my enthusiasm better next time?


4 Answers 4


Was any of that unprofessional?

No, its not.

Sometimes you don't connect with the hiring manager or person interviewing and there isn't anything you can do. This is ok. Getting a gig, especially your first, is a numbers game. Don't become discouraged, keep plugging along and don't stop until you have an offer in hand.

How can I show my enthusiasm better next time?

Make sure you make eye contact when giving your responses. In additions, be sure to mention that you are appreciative of the person who is taking the time to interviewing you .

Also, this article has a lot of tips related to your question:

How to Show Enthusiasm in an Interview – 6 Ways

Highlights from the article are:

  • Boost your energy level
  • Ask a lot of questions
  • When something sounds interesting, say so
  • Compliment them
  • Perfect your posture

Note: Additional details on each point above are included in the article.


I have been through quite some interviews and in the last one, in which I was picked, the interviewer (which is now my manager) told me during the interview: "You really know how to do interviews. And that is good, and hard to find". In the other interviews I was told they were really interested, gave me good feedback but as a fresh grad, my experience was poor (which did not let me down, of course).

Basically, you need to connect with the interviewer. Asking questions or talking about your projects is a good start, but also being quite "happy" about your posible future in that company is a good thing. Ask them about their projects. Also point something negative about yourself, just before you point something possitive:

[NEGATIVE] I sometimes get stucked in difficult matters... [POSSITIVE]but I won't leave the issue unitl I've solved it. That is what my teachers always liked about me anyways.

Doing this you are being honest and telling the interviewer indirectly:

Hey, I am opening myself to you, being honest, because I am really interested in this offer.

And of course, do not lie. If you do not know something, you don't. But that doesnot mean you cannot learn it quickly, because you like the job!

- Do you know C# language?

- No... But I know several languages similar to C# and when something takes my interest, I learn it quickly!

Those things make you connect more with the interviewer, making him see all your enthusiasm .


asking a lot of business-related questions and showing my knowledge in this domain (the company doesn't expect you know anything, so I assumed it will be a huge benefit)

This is good, but it would be even better to ask questions that start a discussion about the tools, processes and team you'll be working with.

Don't feel that you have to wait until the end either. If they ask a question (for example) about how a particular process (say the release process) has worked in a previous role, then answer their question and follow up your answer by asking how similar or different that is to the process the team you're interviewing with.

You'll make yourself seem interested in the people and team you're potentially working with (which is good, people like people who are interested in them and things that affect them, and for a software team the processes and tools they work with are far more relevant to them day-to-day than general business knowledge), and by turning it into more of a back-and-forward conversation rather than just a barrage of questions you'll appear more confident and relaxed, which is also a huge bonus in your favour.

And as an interview works both ways, you'll get a lot of information from their answers and the way they react in conversations that will help you decide whether you actually want the role or not.


This is really kind of a broad question. It's hard to say what exactly they mean. I've also been told that. I have been on hundreds of interviews over the course of my career, some good, some bad.

One thing that I personally have found that helps is that when asked a question...don't answer with a simple "yes" or "no". Elaborate. Give your answer, then go on to explain it in more detail -- maybe even giving examples of when you've used the technology, or how you solved the problem.

And SMILE! You will be received better if you say it with a smile.

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