Hess Associates

10 Telephone Interview Tips

Remember that the purpose of the telephone interview is to get an invitation for a face to face interview –

Here are a few tips on achieving success:

1. Receive the call in a private place if possible, allotting enough time for a thorough conversation – not a bad idea to answer by saying “John speaking”. Try to be on site several minutes early in case.

2. Try to use a land line – the quality is much better than that of a cell phone.

3. Make sure no other phones will ring in your vicinity, and disable call waiting. If you have to cough etc. use ‘mute’ if phone so equipped. Lock ‘Fido’ out of the room.

4. Stand – when you stand, you project more energy and enthusiasm – appealing qualities. Try to let your personality come through – light humour and a smile go a long way.

5. Keep a copy of your resume, the job description, questions you have prepared, and pen and paper before you for quick reference / use.

6. Be prepared to give them a précis of your career to date, starting from what you are doing now and going backwards – the elevator speech. Write it out if necessary. Should not be longer than 2 minutes. They can always ask more.

7. Short, pertinent answers – they can ask more if they want to.

8. Ask them about the job, so you have a full understanding of what is required. Try to avoid discussing money until a later interview. If you are interviewing through a recruiter, tell the company you assumed the recruiter would be having that discussion with them.

9. Ensure that you have looked up their web site and know something about their company – if they ask what you know about them, give them a few facts and say that you would like to learn more. It is really their job to present themselves to you, as it is your job to present yourself to them.

10. If you like what you hear, tell them you are very interested in the position, you can do the job, and would like to know what the next steps in the process might be.

If you enjoy/remember anagrams, just remember “S A M B R I S K E T” – feel free to rearrange numbers 1 to 10 e.g. 7, 8, 3 …

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