It’s hard to create the best first impression during a one-to-one interview even when there are so many ways to wow the recruiter at your disposal, be it with your walk, aura, presence, greetings, or body language. Imagine how it would be when you are being judged on your voice, your pitch, the number of uhms, hmms, and ahems you use when you converse. Do you use too many? Read on…These were just some of the challenges you’d face when you are waiting for your phone interview!
There is some serious thinking and work that has to go behind cracking that phone interview. So get ready for some quick tips before you get the call!
Before the Phone Interview: Preparing for a Phone Interview
Your Resume is your bible! Keep it handy, printed. It should be on your tips when you are asked a question which is remotely about an experience you’ve spoken about on the resume. Why is this the number 1 advice? Understand that for the recruiter in case of a phone interview, your resume is YOU. He/she must have kept your resume on his desk too. So should you! Before that, score it for free and improve it to land your dream job in just one interview call – http://www.vmock.com
Have your SWOT Ready! Apart from your resume, you must have a short list of your accomplishments, strengths & weaknesses ready for a quick glance.
Have a note pad and a pen ready! Don’t miss out on noting down any comments that the interviewer is making. You might want to refer to some of them later or want to use the pad to note down details of the next steps say the date, time & address for the face-to-face interview or the interviewer’s email id.
Practice: Don’t at any point feel that the phone interview is not to be prepped for. In fact, there is more reason to prepare for this interview because talking on the phone isn’t as easy as it may seem. Have a friend or family member conduct a mock interview and record it so you can hear yourself and self-analyze and correct yourself! Make sure you rehearse for the most common phone interview questions asked in a phone interview like –
a) Tell me something about yourself?
b) What are your career goals?
c) Walk me through your resume?
d) Why do you want to apply for this company or role? – You could keep the company website or the JD open in front of you for quick reference!
e) Responsibilities in a previous or current role?
f) Reason for willingness to switch jobs?
g) Background, current salary & expected salary?
h) Do you have any questions?
Do keep a glass of water handy, in case you are asked foot in the mouth questions.
During the Phone Interview:
If the time isn’t convenient, say you are driving or are somewhere where you can’t slip out from, ask if you could talk at another time and suggest some alternatives. If the interviewer says “no”, figure out a way to slip out and say “Could you please hold on for a few seconds?” and RUN!
Make sure there are NO distractions – Turn off call-waiting, sit in a closed room and make sure that everyone in your house knows you are on a call including kids, pets, TV & radio. Even if there is unexpected distraction, mute the phone for a bit, quickly!
Don’t smoke, chew gum, eat or drink – It sounds horrible to the person on the other end; make sure you stay away from doing any of that.
Make sure you are sounding very positive in your greetings and conversations making the interviewer feel like you are really looking forward to working for the organization in the capacity of the position you are applying for. Try “smiling” to make sure your tone changes and your communication is more positive and warm.
Ensure clarity in communication – Don’t mince words or hurry too much. Speak at any appropriate pace, and ask for clarification if you feel like you didn’t hear it right.
Remember the name – Interviewers usually tell their name in the beginning of the telephonic interview while greeting you. Since you are too busy putting yourself together because of the nervousness, you can miss out on the name, and it becomes difficult to recall or address the interviewer later in the conversation. Oh, and yes, address him/her as Mr. Jane or Mr. John unless they ask you to call their first name.
Listen – Don’t interrupt! The last thing you want to do in a phone interview is put off the interviewer and sound annoying.
Think through and give short answers – Don’t go on and on about yourself or an experience, keep it short and crisp.
Simulate – Try to act as if you are actually giving the interview. It might sound stupid, but you can also suit up to give yourself a professional look and feel.
At the end of the Phone Interview
Bag the face-to-face interview – Make the recruiter want to see you once more. Have some interesting questions ready to ask the interviewer.
Send a phone interview follow up email saying “Thank you” to the interviewer as a text or an email reiterating how excited and passionate you are about bagging this job or at least an in-person round of interview.
With these tips, and dos and don’ts, you should be all set to clear your next phone interview! Good luck.
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