March 2020 has flipped normality on its head, leaving many feeling at a loose end when it comes to continuing their job search. As we all begin adapting to a new way of working life, I have created a very special care package that will help you through this time.
Say goodbye to face-to-face interviews (temporarily) and open your door to the world of Skype! You may have already mastered the technique, but I know there’s a few of you out there who still quiver at the prospect of interviewing this way. Below are my top three tips for smashing that call:
1. DITCH THE PJ’S!
An obvious statement, but one a few candidates surprisingly forget. First impressions are imperative, be that through a screen or face to face, so it’s important you still remember to scrub up for your interview. In the process of getting ready to look the part, here’s what I would suggest:
- Have a shower: When you’re at home, it’s very easy to fall into a lethargic slump. The importance of needing a shower begins to subside, thinking you can get away with it as you’ll be talking behind a computer screen. WRONG! Having a shower is the BEST way to mentally prepare as it washes away the fatigue from the night before and increases mental alertness. Feeling fresh will have a direct correlation on how you present yourself, so make time for this in your morning routine. Feel good, look good, interview even better!
- Get dressed: No employer wants to be interviewing someone dressed in matching striped pyjamas. I’m not recommending for you to sit there in a three-piece suit with a cane and a top hat on, but a freshly ironed shirt or a corporate dress would be the perfect choice.
2. MANAGE YOUR SURROUNDINGS
After you’ve made yourself look presentable, you need to find a quiet and clear space where you can speak without being interrupted. Below are a few essential pointers to follow when setting up your room:
- Place your laptop on a solid surface and make sure it’s fully charged
- Ensure you have a blank backdrop behind you
- Mute any nearby TV’s/ Radio’s/ Phones/ Computer notifications
- Keep the background noise to a minimum: make sure your kids/siblings/partners/pets are all occupied
- Always be ‘Tech Ready’: make sure your Wi-Fi, camera and microphone are fully functioning before you start. It’s always good to do a test call with someone 30-60 mins beforehand
3. PHYSICALLY PREPARE FOR THE INTERVIEW
The most common mistakes made in interviews are from talking too fast. You’re nervous, under-pressure and just want to show your future employer everything you know all at once. In order to conduct a professional yet engaging interview, remember the following things:
- Breathe: Take a deep breath in and exhale all the way out before starting. Although a cliché, this will allow you to control the speed at which you talk, relax any stiff body language and give your mind a second to mentally prepare for what’s to come. If you appear calm and collected on camera, this will instantly give the impression that you’re confident in what you’re discussing with the interviewer.
- Know your experience: You will always be asked about yourself and your career history. I would encourage you to go through the job description, identifying similar tasks that you do in your current role and write out some cohesive examples for each bullet point in the job spec so they’re firmly in your mind.
- Smile: This will automatically set an approachable tone, but make sure it’s not too much so you look like the Cheshire Cat.
With these three new tactics under your belt, interviewing at home will become a breeze. We wish you the best of luck over the next few weeks and if you need any help at all please contact Career Legal for continued support and advice.