5 Ways to nail a phone interview
Now days it is becoming a more frequent occurrence for business owners to arrange a short phone call as a first form of interview. This small piece of communication allows an employer to get a grasp on the candidate before they meet face to face, giving them a small inkling as too what they are like and how they would potentially fit in.
Even though the interview is taking place over the phone, it does not mean that you, as a potential employee should take it any less seriously than your conventual interview.
Take and use notes
One of the most useful things about a phone interview, is that the employer cannot see you using and referring to notes that you have taken.
We would highly recommend having the following close to hand:
A list of characteristics, ranging from personal skills to employable traits
Achievements and Qualifications
CV or notes taken from key areas of your CV
Questions for the employer to extend conversation and display interest
Speaking over the phone come naturally to many of us, however, it is highly recommended that you get a friend or member of family to call you and have a quick run-through of an interview which should be recorded to develop feedback.
This will allow someone that is close to you to give constructive criticism, this should consist of what it was that you did well and what you can improve on.
This will also allow you to prepare for some common interview questions, allowing you to develop some rough answers to said questions so that you can respond swiftly without hesitation in the actual interview.
Ensure that you and your phone are professional
We would recommend that you set up a professional sounding voice mail, in case you miss your interview for some reason.
Furthermore, we recommend that you answer the phone formally using your name and a greeting for example “Hello, James speaking….” As opposed to a lazy and mumbled “hello?”.
Remember that your greeting is your first impression over the phone, similar to dressing smart for an interview, a formal greeting can be the difference between arranging a face-to-face interview and never hearing from them again.
Take the call in a comfortable environment
It is highly recommended that an interview over the phone is taken in a secluded area that is free of noise and external distraction. With such we would recommend that you are in the area or close to the decided area at least 5 minutes before you are due to receive the call.
The goal is to keep your mind focused on the interview void of any possible distractions and external input. You need to ensure that your answers are thorough and to the point which is hard when you are in a noisy area.
Listen and Reply
You need to make sure that you are listening to questions properly answering them to the best of your ability. Keeping in mind that the interview needs to be a conversation so that the employer can get to know you from a very brief verbal encounter. This could include asking questions based on what they have been speaking about over the duration of the phone call.
And obviously show common curtesy and manners, which includes letting them finish their questions, but, also responding promptly and formally. You will also need to keep your answers focused and to the point.