Phone Interview Tips You Might Not Expect

NEW YORK | Sunday, August 25th, 2013 11:10am EDT

Interviewing on a phone is similar to interviewing in person. But many people tend to think that phone interviews are less important. A few surprising things can make a big difference in the success of your phone interview.

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Many companies use phone interviews as an initial employment screening technique for a variety of reasons. Because they’re generally brief, phone interviews save companies time. Photo: Mrgndorfr28/Flickr

While phone interviews are not as popular as they once were, many businesses still use them as preliminary interview tools. They use the phone interview to weed out a number of applicants so that they can then choose the actual applicants for in person interviews rather than seeing everyone.

Interviewing on a phone is similar to interviewing in person. But many people tend to think that phone interviews are less important. A few surprising things can make a big difference in the success of your phone interview.

Smiles Make a Difference in Your Tone

Psychologists and researchers have documented the fact that when you smile, your voice changes. It makes you sound more confident. According to Psychology Today, it can also help people get a more favorable impression of you. You don’t have to force the smile.

Just smile in the way you would with a normal conversation. Don’t make your mouth hurt either. Relax and talk. Remember that the purpose of job recruiting is to find the best person for the job, and if you can sound confident, you will be more likely to seem like that person.

Sit Up Straight and Avoid Slouching

Just as smiling makes a difference in your tone, posture makes a difference in your voice. One of the key ways that it impacts your interview is that sitting up straight allows you to project your voice better. Otherwise you’re going to sound somewhat muffled.

It will also be harder for you to modulate your voice. Slouching puts increased pressure on your diaphragm. Remember that you don’t have to maintain perfect posture. You shouldn’t be so focused on your posture that you aren’t able to hear what the interviewer is saying.

Dressing for the Interview Makes a Difference

According to Job Search, applicants who dressed up for their interviews were more likely to sound confident and poised on the phone. It’s part of the “dress the part to get the part” mantra that remains popular to this day. And that particular mantra is not without merit.

The way that you dress reflects the way that you think about yourself. Make sure that you go ahead and put on the suit and the nice shoes. Get yourself dressed as nicely as if you were going to the real interview. This way you can look and act the part while talking on the phone.

Saliva and Tongue Sounds Are Very Loud Over the Phone

When you’re talking on the phone, be very careful of clicking your tongue or licking your teeth. Otherwise, you’re going to give your interviewer an annoying phone conversation. Even simply biting your tongue or lips can make sounds if you have too much saliva in your mouth.

The only way that you can make sure that you aren’t doing this is to record a conversation of yourself on the phone. Listen for any annoying mouth problems and then work to correct them. Otherwise, you run the risk of giving the interviewer an aggravating interview.

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