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Original by Wallace Immen, click here...

he interview was going well enough - until the job seeker reached over to the hiring manager's desk to pick up a cup of coffee, and promptly spilled the mocha all over the dove-grey carpet.

It was game over for the candidate, whose gaffe made it impossible to refocus on the job discussion, says Warren Lundy, a partner with Toronto-based executive coaching and recruiting firm Feldman Daxon Partners Inc., when describing how a job hunter he was advising blew a big opportunity.

It was a particularly disastrous slip, but "a lot of interviewers are getting increasingly ticked about even minor gaffes these days," Mr. Lundy says. "Because they have so many people asking for their time, if they see something they don't like in the first few minutes, they are apt to try to end the encounter as quickly as possible, and move on to someone who shows more savvy and care."

Candidates can blow it for themselves in many ways, according to a poll of nearly 500 U.S. hiring managers by the U.S.-based Society for Human Resource Management. We asked some Canadian pros to weigh in on moves the survey found most likely to be fatal in job interviews.

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