How to Nail a Phone Interview

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An article by contributor Brian Chen.

I have noticed a trend among individuals that are having a challenging time preparing for interviews. I am starting a weekly interview tip to assist active job seekers.

My first tip is going to be regarding phone interviews. Some candidates see phone interviews as pointless, but they serve a purpose. Most phone interviews are a first round with an HR Manager and you may think “It is just an HR Manager” or “They do not know anything about the job.” In fact, they are the gatekeeper to your next role. It is important to always act professional and engaged during these calls. HR Managers are pros at phone screens and can quickly tell if you are paying attention. They will make a judgment based on this call if you move forward to meet with the Hiring Manager.

Here are my tips for a successful phone interview:

1. Be prepared! Have your resume in front of you and statements regarding your experience prepared. This way it comes across smooth during your delivery of related experience to the role you are interested in.

2. Do not speak in jargon. Do not dumb down what you are saying, but understand who you are talking to and tailor your vocabulary to them.

3. Be professional Try to find a quite place to have the phone call. Standing or walking while talking improves your breathing and make you easier to hear. Also, don’t forget to smile! The interviewer can hear if you’re engaged in the conversation.

4. Always ask for the next step. This is important because it shows you are interested in the position. Use something the individual said during your conversation to do so. Example: “You spoke about the growing business unit for ABC. I am looking forward to the next step and learning more about how I can help you achieve this goal.”

I hope this helps someone out there who is struggling with phone interviews. If you have any questions feel free to send me a message!

by Brian Chen on May 9, 2017.


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