telephone interviews

4 common sense tips for your telephone interview

Increasingly, I am getting more clients who are being  scheduled for a telephone interview. Actually, just the other day, I was coaching a client and Kathy (not her real name) received a call from an employer and did a brief telephone interview right before my eyes!

Yes, it is becoming common to have a telephone interview as a “pre-screening tool” for hiring managers and HR personnel alike.

Here’s a phone interview tip worth considering: smile.

A smile is a magic thing, and in addition to being seen in person it can be felt from a distance. When doing a phone interview, don’t think
that because the person on the other end of the phone can’t see you that smiling and other positive body gestures are not important. The best
interview tip that anyone has ever given was to smile and make positive gestures. In fact, many people talk with their hands. If you do,
consider a hands-free telephone head set.

Another tip that will be worth its weight in gold is to have a good quality telephone. It may seem silly to even mention it, but the better
quality phone you use, the better your voice will sound. These days, people own their own phones or have cancelled a landline in favour of
one, universal phone. For those who do own a land line, these phones are fine for talking to your spouse perhaps, but for business use, make a good business impression, and use a good phone. 

Even better? Use a landline with a cord, and not a cell phone or cordless phone. Dead batteries, crackling sounds, bad cell sites, and
weather interference can make you sound bad at the other end, and you may not even know it. When doing your phone interview you want to be
clear and make a good impression. Take this tip to heart and use a good quality land line.

I once received a tip from a headhunter who specialized in finding people jobs. While it seemed like common sense, I realized that it was a tip of value, and recommend it to people to this day.

Do your homework on the company before your phone interview. Do a search on the Internet using Yahoo, Google, Google plus, Linkedin and
Twitter (for more details on using Twitter, check out my webinar on this site). Research company information and updates to identify their “pain
points,” and rationale for the job posting.

The last tip to keep in mind is to be yourself, and be comfortable. 

One of the best ways to be yourself, and maintain comfort during your phone interview is to practice the interview. Ask a friend to play the part of the boss. Call a friend on the phone and go through a mock interview, answering all of the questions that you think the interviewer is likely to ask. Mock
trials help lawyers, and rehearsals help musicians. It only makes sense that a practice interview will help an interviewer. While it may seem
silly, this is a phone interview tip you should take to heart.

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