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A Fortune 500 Staffing Manager gives tips on how to sound confident during phone interviews

March 24, 2016

By Dan on March 24, 2016

phone interviews, interview tips, interview prep, interview follow up, interviewing, interviewing advice

Telephone interviews can make people nervous, but remember if all goes well the next step is a face-to-face interview. So it is best to be focused, have a positive mindset in place, and prepare for the phone interview just like it's a face-to- face interview. 

Before the telephone interview make sure you clarify the details. You may not be in the same time zone as the interviewer (more common than you think), so be sure to clarify the time of the interview in both your time zone and the other, and confirm who is calling whom.


Use notes to your advantage! The best part about a phone interview is that you can have your notes in front of you. Have a copy of your resume, the job application, and some bullet points of you want to mention (particularly experience and/ or skills). Also put together a list of questions written out ahead of time that you want to ask the interviewer.

Make sure you are in a quiet place with a charged phone and a glass of water. If you have time, it might be worth it to find a quiet place where you know you won't be disturbed, rather than trying to do it from your classroom/dorm/apartment/house/office/car. Also, keep your phone charger handy, just in case the interview is going well.

During your telephone interview, remember to be happy and confident. If you are relaxed and smile while speaking, it will allow you to give positive answers and sound confident. Always best to impress the employer with your enthusiasm.

Remain professional. You may feel comfortable at home or where you're having the interview. However, you're more likely to become distracted, so to try avoid doing what you may normally do on the phone when talking with friends and family. Put away distractions and focus on the phone call. To help, stand up and take notes. Standing and walking around can help your voice come across more effectively and shows that you have good communication skills.  

Finally and most important, make sure you are listening! Whenever your interviewer is speaking, do not interrupt them. Wait for them to ask the whole of the question before jumping in with an answer. This shows that you have good listening skills, and it also allows you to think of the best possible answer.

After the interview, it is best to follow up with a thank you, just like you would in a face-to-face interview. And I also think it's nice, if an assistant set up the call, to send a quick note thanking him or her for helping facilitate the interview.

Good Luck!

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