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Blogs Home >> Great Resumes Fast >> 'The Biggest Mistake You Can Make in a Phone Interview'
The Biggest Mistake You Can Make in a Phone Interview

I have to admit, with more than 12 years of hands-on experience interviewing candidates for various positions, I find that the biggest mistakes arenít made during the face-to-face interview; the ones that have really shocked me have been when Iíve interviewed a candidate over the phone. I find this especially serious for those who are looking to WORK FROM HOME or TELECOMMUTE. So if thatís you, listen up; Iím about to save you from making a mistake that will most definitely cost you the job.

I would assume, if youíre interviewing for a position, itís because you want the job; I wouldnít assume that youíre just wasting your time and mine by having a phone interview if you werenít truly interested in the position or didnít want to learn more about it. Yet I find that some candidates just donít take the phone interview very seriously. Let me be very clear hereóthe phone interview is the hiring managerís first impression of you (aside from your resume, of course). You donít want your first impression to be, ďI donít care enough about this position to use proper telephone etiquette.Ē MAKE IT A GOOD FIRST IMPRESSION.

If you are interviewing for a work-from-home position or a telecommuting position, then this is not only your first impression but may be the ONLY impression the hiring manager will have of you; and itís even more critical to ensure that youíre conveying your interest in the opportunityóbut also that you take this position seriously.

The number-one way to turn off the hiring manager and ensure that you donít get the job is to conduct your telephone interview while driving. Others may disagree with me, but to me, this is the biggest mistake you can makeóespecially if you want a work-from-home position. This tells me that you donít take the opportunity seriously enough to set aside dedicated time to talk without distraction. It also tells me your consideration for my clients will probably be about the sameóor worse. If you donít take the interview seriously, then the hiring manager will make the assumption that you wonít take the position seriously either; and when itís a work-from-home or a telecommuting position, that can be very damaging.

If youíre driving while interviewing with me, it tells me that youíre distracted; youíre not taking notes, youíre not giving your complete attention to answering or asking questions, and youíre not evaluating the position. I can also hear the background noise, and it can be very distracting.

Itís critically important during a phone interview to communicate that you value the interviewerís time and that you take the position seriously and will do your best. Putting your best foot forward during a phone interview shows the hiring manager youíll put your best foot forward with their clients, customers, and needs.

Global resume authority Jessica Hernandez of is a former HR Manager who partners with professional- and executive-level candidates to create authentic, branded resumes and cover letters. An international resume columnist and resume expert for JobTalkAmerica radio, her work opens doors to lucrative positions at Fortune 500 companies.

Posted on Thursday, Dec 01, 2011 12:48:08 CST by jhernandez

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