PREPARING FOR THE TELEPHONE INTERVIEW
· The goal of a phone interview is to be invited in for a “face to face” interview.
Nothing more, nothing less
· Allow the interviewer to control the interview; if you don’t, you win the battle
and most assuredly lose the war
· The interviewer has a “need.” The need may be different for an HR person
doing the interview than for the hiring manager. Listen carefully to identify that
need and then tailor your answers to meet the hiring manager’s need
· Review your own resume as if you were the interviewer. Pretend you don’t
know the writer and identify all areas that would have to be satisfactorily
answered before a candidate was asked to come on site
· Stay on a “last name basis” until requested to change
· Before the interview get to a good spot physically where you are comfortable
and make sure that you are on a land line
· Don’t take the call when there is too much noise in the background
· Don’t walk from one place to another because the breathlessness that comes
from walking and talking at the same time subconsciously conveys lack of
· Have paper and pen with you to write down notes or follow up items or for
points to address in your thank you note
DRESS FOR THE PART
Consider getting dressed up for your interview, even though no one will see you. The emails you write to a hiring manager are different than your emails to your friends. You can’t talk to an interviewer the same way you talk with your friends. You know this, but the shift is difficult without practice.
No kidding. You’ll sound more self confident and dynamic if you stand while you speak than if you sit. Walking around a bit, but not too much, also keeps the call going smoothly. If your body is confined, your speech sounds different than if you have run of the room. It’s one reason that the best speakers walk around instead of standing in one place at the podium.
Using hand gestures is very natural for talking, so allow yourself to use them, even though you’re on the phone. You don’t have to force it. They will just come, as long as your hands are free. And you
want to sound natural on the phone because authentic is more likeable. So walking around a room with a headset will actually give you the freedom to be more yourself on the call.
PREPARE FOR THE MOST OBVIOUS QUESTIONS
· Why are you looking to make a change now? (one reason, one sentence, only)
· What do you like about your present company? (one reason, one sentence, only)
· What do you like about your present position? (one reason, one sentence, only)
· What don’t you like about your present company? (one reason, one sentence,
· What don’t you like about your present position? (one reason, one sentence,
· What have you accomplished in your last position? In the one before? (one
reason, one sentence, only) What new skills have you acquired? You will
probably get questions asking you to show that you actually have the skills to
accomplish the goals for the open position. Be prepared to give organized,
rehearsed examples of how you have performed at work in the past in order to
show your skill set.
· Why do you think that you are ready to move ahead? (one reason, one sentence,
SOME QUESTIONS YOU MAY WISH TO ASK
At some point, you will be asked if you have any questions. Here are a few you may wish to consider:
· Determine what are the employers short term concerns. "How can I make an immediate impact on the job?" Tailor the balance of your responses to examples where you resolved similar concerns.
· Ask about the company, its performance expectations, and the culture. In other words, show interest!.
· What are the major responsibilities of the position?
DON’T FORGET TO CLOSE.
An interview is about selling yourself, and the best salespeople are closers. Your goal for a phone interview is to get an in-person interview. So don’t get off the phone until you have made some efforts to get to that step. Ask what the process is for deciding who to interview face-to-face. Ask for decision-making timelines, and try to find out who is making the decisions. Don’t barrage the interviewer with questions in this regard. And don’t forget a key component of a successful interview—even for a phone interview–a thank you note.
COMPENSATION AND BENEFITS
You will know the salary range for the position. Don’t be afraid to say that you have been told that the “budgeted range for this position is from $to $”) and that this is what you are looking for and expect to be paid (but that you much prefer the upper end of the range)