Most likely your interview will take place over the phone. Now, you might think that not having to be in the physical presence of your interviewer might be an easy thing to do. You might be surprised, however, to learn that a telephone interview can actually be more difficult than being across the table from someone as a telephone interview has its own unique skill sets you should know about. So let’s look further into how a virtual assistant should prepare for a phone interview.
Don’t Wait Or You’ll Be Late
I would say that you should be at your desk at least 5-10 minutes ahead of the interview. You don’t want to sound rushed, and you don’t ever, ever want to be late. That will give the interviewer good reason to not want to hire your services. You’ll want to have your headset set up ahead of time and have a notepad and pen handy for notes.
Please listen to me when I advise you to prepare ahead of time. You will want to have the job posting, their website (if they have one) and any other important details that might help you to put your best face forward. One such paper might be a list detailing your strengths and weaknesses, as well as your recent accomplishments that are similar to what the client is looking for you to do.
Practice Makes Perfect
Always, always, always practice sounding out what you might say ahead of time. Try to think of questions they might ask. Practice how you might answer them. It will help make you sound much more self-assured. Use your family or friends as sounding boards as you practice in front of them.
Don’t Eat Or Drink During the Interview
Refrain from chewing gum, eating your lunch or snacks, or drinking your soda on the phone during the interview. The sounds of chewing, slurping, etc., could not only stand a chance of being heard on the other end of the line, but it will also cause you to slur your words making you less likely to be heard clearly.
Be Neat and Tidy
This one might sound silly, but it really isn’t. So, hear me out. Run a comb through your hair, put on a clean shirt or blouse, wash your face, whatever it takes for you to feel good on the outside. That feeling will make you feel better on the inside as well. When you do this, your self-confidence will be quite evident during the phone interview. Don’t forget to have good posture so your voice will carry. Watch your tone. You want to have an animated voice at a consistent pace and level.
Shut Down Communications
While you undoubtedly have IMs that you have open, email open, your cell phone on your desk, and Skype open, take care to ensure that these methods of communication won’t be a major distraction during the phone interview. Shut down your email, either close your IMs or put them in a busy or offline status, and either leave your cell phone in another room or turn it off. Now is not the time for distractions to occur. Let your family know that you can’t be disturbed, and maybe put the dogs out in the back yard for a while.
So let’s take a look at what a virtual assistant should do to prepare for a phone interview. We’ve discussed that you should be on time and prepared. Check out the interviewer’s company on the Web and even look at their website(s) or blog(s) if they have any. Practice what you might say if a certain question comes up.
The final sections we looked at were what you can do to create a good impression and avoid distractions. A virtual assistant must do everything they can to land new clients in this highly competitive business. Now go out there and ace that phone interview.
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