Phone Skills Which a Job Seeker Needs

Be ready to handle the surprise call. Check the phone interview hints below. Develop some sort of stall tactic (such as "If you don't mind, I'd like to move to another phone so that we will have more privacy", or "Let me shut the door") to allow you a few seconds to relax and collect your thoughts.

Rehearse your responses. Once on the phone, candidates tend to ramble. Be succinct and avoid the urge to over amplify your answers. Remember, the average individual listens for only 30-45 seconds at a time. Therefore, carefully prepare 'sound bites' that will last no longer then a minute. While being brief, however, avoid yes or no answers, as they give too little information. Make sure to include key points and answer questions directly.

Role-play the interview. During the course of a phone interview, candidates should try to match the interviewer's voice tone, pitch and delivery speed. Enlist a friend or family member, support group member or other coach to call you at an appointed time and run through the interview. This will only work if both of you agree to be 'in character' during the entire mock interview. After the interview (at least 30 minutes) is completed, de-brief to determine overall impressions and areas for improvement.

Be aware of mannerisms, such as repeated phrases (ending sentences with "and that", starting sentences with "like", "you know" or "I mean", etc.) or nervous laughs. These mannerisms can be distracting and can hamper professional delivery. The experience shows that individuals with these mannerisms are often completely unaware of them.

Watch your mouth while talking on the phone. Keep your mouth about an inch from the mouthpiece to avoid sounding faint or muffled.

Selectively smile during the course of the interview. Yes, you are right. No one can see you - but this tip is one the experts swear by. Smiling will make your voice sound positive, confident and upbeat.

Do not eat or chew gum while on the phone. The sound carriers beautifully and will not leave a positive impression.

Keep up your end of the conversation. It is fine to let the interviewer do most of the talking but be prepared with some questions of your own. Interviewers generally expect senior executives to be intelligent individuals with inquiring minds. Do not forget - inquiring minds want to know! Prepare several questions concerning responsibilities, the characteristics that will contribute to success in the position, etc. Write them down and keep them by the phone.

Take notes during the interview. These will be tremendously helpful in preparing for future interviews and will help you keep track of points to emphasize or follow-up on in your questions and later meetings.

Go for the close. The whole point of the phone interview is to move you forward to the next stage of the search process. If the interviewer has not established the next steps by the end of the conversation, it is your turn to take the initiative. Tel him or her - how interested are you in the position, how much you could contribute and ask when things might move forward.

art_remember phone skillsCheck your voice mail skills.

Don't be shy - go for it!

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Other Phone Skills Info

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Start preparing for job interviews and check the job interview tips do's and don'ts. Also, find out why people are not hired for available jobs.

In addition, on job search, visas, work permits, cover letters, CVs & resumes, job interviews and dress codes pages, you will find very useful tips for many different countries.

Good luck with your phone skills


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