Picking up the phone to speak to a complete stranger is terrifying enough, so imagine how much more scary the prospect of having a phone interview can be. From tripping over our words to calling the interviewer the wrong name, there’s plenty of ways a phone interview can take a turn for their worse.
That’s why you should always leave plenty of room for error, and treat phone interviews as though they were a face-to-face meeting with an employer. While you may think that hiding behind a phone can help disguise any nerves and get you out the formality of power dressing for the occasion, remember – a good first impression creates a great long-lasting impression.
Want that dream job? Here’s how to avoid making a nightmare of a phone interview:
- Keep talking to a minimum. Sure you want to bowl them over with your years of expertise and countless achievements, but be careful you don’t overshare. You risk talking over the interviewer, or worse, incorrectly hearing their questions and therefore giving irrelevant responses. Pace yourself by waiting a few seconds before replying, as this will give you time to come up with an appropriate answer.
- Don’t get too comfortable. Just because you’re in your own surroundings, it doesn’t mean you should let your standards – let alone your guard – down! Arm yourself with the relevant paperwork (job description, any questions you may have) so you’re well prepared.
- Arrange your interview at a time when you’ll be at peak performance. Scheduling it at 9am when you’ve set your alarm for 8:45am is a recipe for disaster, and ensure it doesn’t clash with times you’ll be having lunch or tending to any errands.
- NEVER conduct an interview while looking in a mirror. By concentrating too much on your appearance, you’ll lose focus of the important matter in hand – i.e. acing your phone interview. Additionally, you’ll end up smiling more than you’d usually do; which in turn will affect your speech and make you come across as unnatural.
- Dress the part. Like an actor warming up for a role, think of the phone interview as a dress rehearsal. When you dress in a confident manner, you end up acting in a more confident manner – which will be evident in your voice during your phone interview.
- Give your vocal cords a break. An hour before your phone interview, soothe your throat with a cough drop or a spoon of honey. This will allow the conversation to flow, without you having to take endless water breaks that could stilt the interview.
- Have a picture of the interviewer ready. The idea of talking to a faceless voice often fills many people with dread, so make it more personable by finding a photo of the interviewer – and have it in front of you during the course of your phone chat. If you’re unable to find a photo, then use an image of an authoritative figure that you respect instead.
What tips do you swear by when having a phone interview? Feel free to share with the rest of the jobseeking community – the more advice, the merrier!
This post has been supplied by BT Business Direct