Quick Tips for a Phone Interview
In my personal experience with interviews, a clean, crisp appearance and a bit of background research never hurts to make a good first impression. However, on my first phone interview I was at a bit of a loss; my entire qualification was being judged on my voice! If the prospect of not meeting an employer in person makes you even more nervous than an actual interview, here are some quick tips for phone interview strategies.
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My name is Jessica Bonsall, and I work in the Career Center as a Career Assistant. One of the most interesting parts of my job is the practice interview. After seeing first hand what works, and what doesn’t, I have compiled some tips on how to impress an interviewer:
1. When researching a company before an interview, go beyond the typical internet search. It is important to look at all the information you can find online, but also try to seek out other places you can find information, such as in business journals or employer files at the Career Center. It is more likely that you will know information that other candidates do not if you venture away from the internet.
2. Prepare good questions to ask during the question and answer session at the end of the interview. Good questions reveal your interest in the organization. They let the employer know that you want to make sure you will fit with the company before making any commitments. Good questions are often specific to the company and may ask about employee training procedures, the existing employee dynamics within the company, policies they have for dealing with clients, how much input beginning employees have, or if the company provides any opportunities for furthering your education. Questions to avoid would be those dealing with salary or promotions.
3. Watch your body language. Avoiding eye contact, weak handshakes, and nervous gestures are easy to spot and make you look insecure. Presenting yourself as confident and prepared is especially important when you are interviewing for a job where you will need communication and interpersonal skills. Coming to the Career Center for a taped practice interview is a good way to spot problematic body language. It is also helpful to practice in front of a mirror before an interview so that you can see what you will look like to the employer.