[Music plays. Words appear on screen: Preparing for a Phone Interview. Announcer, dressed in suit and tie, appears on screen]
Announcer: Okay, I know that today we’re covering two things you might dread —a job interview and talking on the phone to someone you don’t know —but I promise, a job interview doesn’t have to be painful. It’s your chance to make a great first impression and it’s not quite as scary as being face-to-face. With that said, it’s important to prepare for a phone screen just as much as you would for an in-person interview. Today, I’m sharing five tips for phone interviews that will make a big impact.
Tip #1: Keep it brief. The goal of a phone screen is for the recruiter to tell whether you meet the job requirements. If you do, they’ll bring you in to meet with more people. So there’s no need to tell your life story. When you answer each question, you’ll want to focus only on the most important highlights of your experience. The recruiter will ask for details if they want to know more.
Tip #2: Make a cheat sheet. The best part about phone interviews is that it’s perfectly okay to have notes in front of you. So have a copy of your resume, 3-5 bullet points about work experiences you want to mention, and a list of questions written out ahead of time.
Tip #3: Keep your energy up. When you’re on the phone, the recruiter can’t see your body language and facial expressions. Try smiling and talking with your hands the way you would in person, which will help your enthusiasm come through in your voice.
Tip #4: Be prepared. This sounds simple, but you’d be surprised how many forget the basics. Charge your phone. Make sure you’re in a quiet spot. And set up everything you need 15 minutes or so before the call. If you’re worried about background noise, call a friend to be sure they can hear you with no distractions.
And Tip #5: Dress the part. Even if they can’t see you, putting on something other than your sweat pants will make you feel more professional. And that might be just the edge you need. Good luck! You’ll be great!
[Music plays. Words appear on screen: The Muse]