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Top 14 Tips for Crushing Your Next Phone Interview

Wednesday - September 25, 2013

Phone InterviewYou have many advantages during this type of interview: You can dress comfortably, be more relaxed in a familiar environment, have your papers and information right in front of you without having to shuffle around, and can discreetly take notes.

But, on the other hand, treating the phone interview as a light-hearted step towards getting the job is a mistake. It’s here that the hiring manager will ask specific questions about job history or projects from your past, to ensure you are being honest in your resume and are truly qualified for the position.

Phone interviews, whether with a recruiter or hiring manager, are often the first step in the job interview process. If you flub it, game over. Here are some key tips to make sure you make it to round two — an in-person meeting.

  1. Send your resume to the interviewer prior to the call, even if you think he’s got it.

  2. If you’re using a cell phone, find a quiet place.

  3. If you plan on using a headset, call a friend first for a test run to make sure you don’t sound like you have marbles in your mouth.

  4. Have a copy of your resume in front of you as a point of reference during the call.

  5. If you have a job description for the position at hand, re-review it just before your call so the qualifications and responsibilities are top of mind and you can speak to these key points.

  6. Phone

    Don’t interview in your PJs. Get dressed for the day. If you look the part, you’ll feel the part.

  7. Don’t yawn.

  8. Stand up while talking. You’ll automatically be in presentation mode which will give off an air of confidence.

  9. Do NOT eat or chew gum.

  10. Close out your email, Skype, Facebook and any other programs in which someone can distract you.

  11. Make sure you’ve locked out a 60-minute window of time so you don’t have to interrupt the ebb and flow of the dialogue.

  12. Do your homework. Research the company and come prepared with smart questions written down so you don’t forget.

  13. Create a one-pager that highlights your accomplishments, using numbers to quantify results whenever you can. Have it in front of you during the interview so that you can answer questions with examples vs. a simple “yes” or “no.”

  14. Don’t hang up without telling him you are interested in moving forward and meeting in person. Sell him, and then close him.