10 Ways To Tackle A Telephone Interview. Telephone interviews need as much preparation as face to face interviews. Since you may not know when to expect the telephone interview, it is critical that you do not wait to begin preparing for the interview until you have the interview. The following tips will help you go through a telephone interview with ease and probably get the job.
1. Control Your Environment
Always arrange to be in a quiet, well-lit room, free from distractions. Sit in a chair with relevant materials easily in front of you. Give your sole, focused attention to your interviewer, and whenever possible make sure you are on a landline rather than shaky cell connection
2. Be Prepared To Explain Everything On Your CV
Any bullet point on your CV might arouse the curiosity of your interviewer. Be prepared to give more detail, but don’t take too much time on any one answer. After a few sentences, ask: “Is this what you were after, or would you like me to go in a different direction or provide greater detail?”
3. Show Confidence
Your interviewer is likely trained to glean from your conversation your level of self-confidence, personality and ability to communicate effectively. Remember that no matter what your prior situation may have been, you need to build trust in yourself and knowledge of your abilities from the ground up.
4. Understand And Lower Your Red Flags
While you may be reluctant to have to deal with issues like age, employment gaps or frequent job-hopping, you should understand that you can do a great deal to mitigate these issues when you address them head on. Just answer the question in a non-defensive, factual way, pivot the conversation to something else and move on.
5. Be Prepared For Uncomfortable Questions
The big four questions almost always rear their heads in a phone screen in one-way or another: Tell me about yourself. Tell me about your biggest strength/weakness. What are your salary expectations? And where do you expect to be in five years? There are numerous articles dealing with these and similar questions. Review them and practice your answers many times.
6. Do Your Homework
You will likely be given an opportunity to ask questions. Use it to show your enthusiasm, ask about this or that aspect of the job, or ask about how you would be able to use X in your background to do Y. Never use this as an opportunity to ask about their process, start dates, salary, benefits or anything else they can do for you.
7. Be Prepared To Explain Every Job Transition
An HR screener will likely want you to step him or her through your CV. Why did you make this or that choice of career direction? Why make that lateral move, or how did you get that promotion? And what about those short job stints or gaps between jobs? Be sure to have a copy of the same CV you submitted next to you.
8. Smile While On The Phone
Place a mirror by the phone, and make a point of looking into it and smiling while you are talking on the phone. Start now, so you can become comfortable with it. You will find that you sound more upbeat and engaged when you do this. Your smiles will be “heard” by the interviewer making for a positive impression.
9. Have The Documents You Need At Your Fingertips
Having easy access to the company and job information will allow you to confidently respond to questions without fumbling regarding which job you are talking about. So have a copy of both the job description and a copy of the resume or application you submitted in front of you before the interview starts
10. Say Thank You, In Writing
Sure, it was a telephone interview, but that is no reason for not taking the time to exercise simple but powerful courtesies. Write a thank you letter, and mail it, unless your main communication has been through email with the interviewer. Don’t just say thank you but make a point of reiterating strengths and value for the position.