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3 Surprising Phone Interview Tips

3 Surprising Phone Interview Tips

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Phone interviews are so important—they are your gateway to get to the face-to-face. Companies really try to screen candidates out with these interviews, because they need to narrow down their list to bring on site. So you need to do everything you can to give yourself the edge and ace that interview so you can move forward.

Related: How To Ace A Phone Interview

However, phone interviews can present some unique challenges. It can feel unnerving to not be able to see the interviewer’s face, or have them see yours. So what can you do? Beyond knowing great answers to phone interview questions, keeping ‘cheat sheets’ in front of you, and asking questions of your own, here are three surprising tips that may help you ace your phone interview.

1. Look at a picture of your interviewer

Looking at a picture of the person interviewing you can help you feel more comfortable and relaxed as you answer their questions. It may even help you establish better rapport. You can get their picture from their LinkedIn profile, which you should be looking at anyway as part of your pre-interview research. As a bonus, having their picture in front of you means that you will see them smiling at you, which may help you feel more confident, too.

2. Look in the mirror – or stay away from mirrors completely

Some people say that looking in a mirror while you’re interviewing on the phone helps you remember to smile. Since smiling while you talk makes you sound more relaxed and confident, that could be great advice. However, others say that looking in the mirror makes them feel incredibly self-conscious and unable to focus. I say that you should try doing both in another conversation (especially in a practice interview) and see if looking in the mirror works for you or not.

3. Stand up

When you stand up rather than sit, your voice is stronger and you sound more enthusiastic and energetic. Those are both great qualities to convey to a hiring manager. One thing to watch out for: you may be tempted to walk around while you talk, but be careful that you don’t move around too fast and get winded. That won’t communicate positive qualities for you.

Phone interviews do present some challenges, but they also provide you with some benefits because the interviewer can’t see you. Take advantage of the situation as you can and give yourself a performance boost.

Get more tips and download a free podcast to help you ace your phone interview.

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About the author

Career Coach – Peggy McKee is an expert resource and a dedicated advocate for job seekers. Known as the Sales Recruiter from Career Confidential, her years of experience as a nationally-known recruiter for sales and marketing jobs give her a unique perspective and advantage in developing the tools and strategies that help job seekers stand head and shoulders above the competition. Peggy has been named #1 on the list of the Top 25 Most Influential Online Recruiters by HR Examiner, and has been quoted in articles from CNN, CAP TODAY, Yahoo! HotJobs, and the Denver Examiner.


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Peggy McKee Career Coach – Peggy McKee is an expert resource and a dedicated advocate for job seekers. Known as the Sales Recruiter from Career Confidential, her years of experience as a nationally-known recruiter for sales and marketing jobs give her a unique perspective and advantage in developing the tools and strategies that help job seekers stand head and shoulders above the competition. Peggy has been named #1 on the list of the Top 25 Most Influential Online Recruiters by HR Examiner, and has been quoted in articles from CNN, CAP TODAY, Yahoo! HotJobs, and the Denver Examiner.