Potential employers may want to ask you some questions over the phone in order to decide if you are the right candidate for a future personal meeting. Here are some tips on how to nail a phone interview and attract your interviewer when you’re not face-to-face:
1. Pick the Right Place:
Schedule the phone call for a time that you know you will be completely free; preferably at home in a quiet space where no one will interrupt you. Don’t take the call if you’re out running errands or in the middle of a busy environment. You want to be as focused as possible and listen carefully to the interviewers questions. Sit at a desk rather than lying in bed or walking around. Being in a clean, organized space will make you feel and act more professional.
2. Use a Cheat Sheet:
A benefit of a phone interview is that you can keep your own notes in front of you and refer to them at anytime without seeming unprepared. Jot down some key points that you would like to mention while answering common questions, such as why you are interested in the job position. This is an effective tool to use to make sure you don’t forget any important details. Have questions already written down that you can ask towards the end of the phone call. Print off your resume or have it open on your computer, so you can follow along with the interviewer when discussing your skills and experience.
Your personality plays a huge part in connecting with the employer and helps you stand out amongst all of the other applicants with similar qualifications. Even though you’re not speaking directly in front of the interviewer, be sure to smile, as this will affect your tone of voice. It’s easy to “hear” a smile; you want to sound engaged in the conversation and excited to work for the company.
4. Pace Yourself
There are probably a lot of things that you want to say in a short amount of time, but it’s important to speak slowly and pronounce everything very clearly to get your points across. Allow for pauses before you answer a question to avoid speaking over the interviewer and to be sure that it’s your turn to talk. You also want to give yourself a moment to collect your thoughts and not blurt out the first thing that comes to mind. Answer questions to the best of your ability without rambling on or going off topic. If additional information is irrelevant, the interviewer may become uninterested or even annoyed.
5. Know the Next Step:
The phone interview is usually only the first stage of the overall interview process; therefore you have a chance of being contacted a second or third time. Before you hang up the phone, ask what the next step will be and when you can expect to hear back by. Ask for the interviewers personal e-mail address and phone number. This will allow you to send them a quick thank-you message and contact them to follow up on the status of the job.
By: Alicia Elliott