How I Master The Phone Interview

Daily inspiration and advice for the ambitious savvy young professional

How I Master The Phone Interview

This is a guest post written by our Hofstra University Intern Queen Campus Ambassador, Grace. She is an English major and a Journalism and Italian minor.

With changing times come alternate options in handling everyday things that we’ve been accustomed to facing in a traditional manner. Whether it’s the introduction of new mobile apps for your iPad, or the cessation of face-to-face networking, the ways we follow through with daily tasks are undeniably transforming.

Let’s face it—these new alternate options are even affecting and impacting those monumental steps that can either make or break your career. That’s right! The phone interview is paving its way in becoming the norm among business ventures, and is presently succeeding in doing so.

Read on and learn how to master your next phone interview!

1. Stand out among the rest (within the first five minutes!)

"The first five minutes of a phone interview are the most important, since only about two out of 10 people will still be under consideration beyond that," says Annie Stevens, a managing partner at Boston executive coaching firm ClearRock. "So you need to be prepared right from the start to make the most out of the limited time you&ll have."

2. Refrain from using negative words

Using words like “can’t” or “don’t” makes you appear pessimistic, and gives your interviewer the impression that you might not have the stamina or confidence to take on an important task. "Employers want people who can offer solutions, not potentially create problems,” Stevens advises.

3. Rehearse prior to the actual phone interview

Practicing with someone before the actual interview can boost your confidence and comfort level. Your mock-interviewer can give you pointers that will help you perfect future interviews! By rehearsing topics you are sure will come up in the real interview, you will undoubtedly act as confident and cool as a cucumber (as corny as that sounds!) and ready for any other question that will come your way!

4. Have your laptop handy

The advantage of doing a phone interview is the option of having your laptop nearby. As weird as it may sound, finding a picture of your interviewer (LinkedIn, Facebook, their company’s website) makes a phone interview more of a real, in-person conversation and experience. Also be sure to bring up their company’s website on your laptop just in case you want to brush up on some important facts or information.

5. Don’t wear pajamas

I guarantee you will notice a difference in the way you carry yourself if you avoid wearing sweatpants or pajamas. How do you feel when you dress up and put on some lipstick? I bet you feel invincible, perfect, professional, and enthusiastic about anything that comes your way. That is EXACTLY the attitude your interviewer is looking for! So take some time out for you to feel good about yourself—your newfound confidence won’t go unnoticed!