Smartphones and social media and Wi-Fi, oh my!
The 21st century is truly a time to be alive. But, despite the intimate love affair most of us have with our devices, technology doesn’t always make life easier.
When it comes to keeping up with your friends who are backpacking in Europe, video chat tech is the best invention on the planet; when it comes to job interviews, it can be a total curveball.
Your initial thought when a video chat interview is extended to you may be, Score! I only have to worry about half an outfit! After your dreams of secretly rocking your Daffy Duck pajama pants during an interview begin to fade, reality will quickly set in.
For everything that can go wrong during an in-person interview, two more things can go wrong in a video chat interview. Not only is there a physical barrier, but your internet may go out, you might get a little too cozy in your setting, or your cat may decide to make a guest appearance.
Before you start panicking just looking at the Skype icon, get yourself camera-ready and there’s no reason your video chat interview won’t be just as great, if not better, than an in-person.
Set the scene. Make sure you pick a location with a plain backdrop and great light that will complement your outfit. Speaking of outfits, suit up! Just because your interviewer won’t see it all, doesn’t mean you shouldn’t go all-out. Not only will you feel more confident, you’ll be putting yourself in an interview state of mind.
Get your tech check on. The day you find out about the interview, the day before, and an hour before make sure all the components you’ll need are working—software, camera, microphone, and internet.
Time to nail the interview. There’s a few things to take into account when you have a digital barrier to keep it as professional as possible:
- Make sure the interviewer is done asking a question before answering—time lags can lead to awkward talk-overs.
- Don’t be afraid to let your interviewer know you need a question repeated if the connection blips.
- Don’t get too comfortable in your non-professional setting—you’re still in a professional interview and shouldn’t be playing with pens at your desk or rocking in your desk chair.
You know that uncomfortable moment when you’re walking next to someone, you say goodbye, and then keep walking in the same direction? The sign-off struggle is the video chat equivalent. Your goodbye hangs in the air while you spend what feels like an eternity locating the ‘End Call’ button. Instead, steer into the skid. Leave it up to your interviewer to take charge on ending the call while you freeze frame yourself (we recommend a big smile and jazz hands). Not only will you give your interviewer a laugh, but you’ll be remembered.
Now that you’re ready for your closeup, no newfangled way of interviewing is going to trip you up—go get ‘em tiger!
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