Recently I experienced one of the most stressful experiences anyone who is on the job hunt can go through, a phone interview. Here's why it can be so terrifying...
Phone interviews are just ONE step out of about three to getting the job.
You can't read the interviewer's expression!
You know they are either tearing apart the resume you worked so hard on, or they are bored with you already and are skimming through Instagram.
You don't know how much to share... Especially when you understand the importance of selling yourself in order to make it to the next round.
Those awkward silences after your answer.
This awkward silence happens at the in-person interviews as well of course. They take notes but somehow over the phone, this silence feels deadly!
But just because a company wants to phone interview you before they actually meet you, it doesn't mean it has to go to the dumps in your first five minutes. I mean someone will end up with the job, so obviously, phone interviews are not doomed for failer.
Some of the tips that I tried out for myself that really helped me stay calm and confident in my 20-minute phone interview I think will definitely help you out in the future!
Tip #1. Prepare your answers AHEAD of time!
This sounds cheesy but honestly by writing out my answers to some of the most common questions asked, it helped me keep on track of what I was saying. Writing out my answers made me think through my responses. In an interview, there are no re-dos! But by writing out your responses out ahead of time you have the opportunity to backspace and edit. By writing out your responses you can reduce the risk of blabbering on and OVER-COMMUNICATING. Remember you want to sell yourself but in as few as words as possible.
Tip #2. Dress for success!
Dress For Success
This one is obviously just for you. Since the interviewer won't be able to see you. But if you feel professional and awake and ready for the job, you will have more confidence and pride in yourself and work. Just because it is a phone interview, I do not recommend sleeping in until five minutes before your interview.
Tip #3. Have water nearby!
This may seem silly or stupid. But it does help! During those awkward silences take advantage of it and get your thoughts collected. Drink some of that water. Keep your throat clear and fresh!
Tip #4. Charge your phone!
You may think, "It's a phone interview, who would forget to charge their phone?"
And all I gotta say is, IT HAPPENS! My phone didn't die but it definitely added that little extra bit of stress knowing that my phone was at 30% but dying fast!
Tip #5. Go to a quiet and decluttered space!
The fewer distractions the better. You do want quiet so you can hear the interviewer and they can hear you. This means NO MUSIC, NO TV. Just you. And declutter! When you are in an organized area and clean space, your brain has fewer distractions. When you place yourself in a messy, cluttered area you're thinking about 1,000 different things and not one of those things is your interview.
If you are preparing for this wonderful experience, GOOD LUCK! You got this! Be confidently YOU and don't sell yourself down. Becuase you are awesome!