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Top 3 Interview Traps - "The Goldilocks Complex"

Ever heard of 'The Goldilocks Complex'? No?

It's the most common traps I've watched interviewees fall into, and there's usually 3 major misses:

Responses to questions are:

  1. Too BIG

  2. Too small

  3. Too confusing*

It's hard to find "just right".

But I can help!

*The Three Bears forgotten cousin...

Here are some tips to avoid the

Top 3 Goldilocks Interview Traps


You're nervous, so your brain tells you that more words are better. How else will the interviewers truly understand why you're the best candidate for the job?

Pro tip: Stop Talking! More words are not better.

Instead, ensure your response follows the STAR Interview Response technique. This offers a logical format so that:

  • Your interviewers can easily follow and understand

  • You get the most 'bang for your buck' for your words because they're focused on the "A" and "R".

  • You can easily formulate your response, no matter what the question, because the 'formula' is easy to remember, even when you're nervous.


You're (still) nervous, so even though you rehearsed different responses, for the life of you, you can't remember ANY of them. So you offer the 3-4 sentences that you can remember, and hope that's good!!

Pro tip: If you've answered in under 30 seconds, and/or your interviewer(s) haven't taken any notes from your response - it's not enough.

Using the STAR Technique (noted above) ensures that you at least remember 4 different parts of an answer that you need to detail.

This will help make your answer more robust, and will likely trigger your memory along the way so you can fill in the gaps and create a response that doesn't leave your interviewers wanting more.


You may not know, but the Three Bears had a cousin - 'too confusing' (ya I know, it's a stretch, lol).

This is also a cousin to "Too BIG" - but in this trap, not only do you use too many words, you get them muddled with other examples (because nerves), and in the end everyone is left scratching their heads.

You guessed it - the STAR Technique allows you to organize your words, so that you stick to the answer at hand, and no one (yourself included) has to try and follow a confusing bouncing ball throughout your response.


Let's partner together to find your "Just Right"

A few more pro-tips:

  1. Bring in a list of your STAR responses with you to the interview.

  2. Practice your responses out-loud. With me, with a trusted friend, in the mirror - it doesn't matter.

  3. Make a list of "I" statements, so that you can focus on your actions, skill, and experience in your responses, instead of cluttering up your response with words that don't add value.

Through STAR coaching and mock interview practice, I can help you avoid these 'Goldilocks Syndrome' traps - and find your "just right".

#findyouredge #standoutgethired #findyourjustright

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