The game has changed. Interviewing for a job is no longer face-to-face in most cases. Instead, it will be virtual and this may continue even after the pandemic is over. In the past, initial interviews were conducted over the phone audio-only. That meant that non-native speakers of English were at a disadvantage. It is more difficult to communicate when you don’t see the other person. You don’t get the visual cues to help you understand what the other person is saying.
Now the challenge is to appear at your best as you are interviewed on Zoom or some other virtual carrier. I think that evens the playing field somewhat for the non-native speaker.
My purpose is to give you some tips on how to perform well on the screen as you are interviewed for a new job. Here are seven tips for you in regard to a successful interview virtually
1. Professional appearance
Be ready before the call. When you activate your camera, check your background. If it is messy, go to a white screen. Dress appropriately.
2.Make sure the sound is good.
Verify that you can hear the interviewer well and they can hear you.
3. Look at the camera.
When checking the camera, take note of the position of your face on the screen. Eye contact is important. You should be looking straightforward rather than up or down. The goal is to provide a normal conversational mode.
4. Calm and Confident
Project a calm and confident personality. You achieve this by being prepared. Remember that the camera reveals a lot, perhaps even more than in a face-to-face interview.
5. Practice beforehand
Practice the anticipated questions you will experience. Record them and listen to your answers. Have some stories ready to illustrate your achievements relevant to the position.
6. Do your research
Know about the job. Read the position description carefully. Learn as much as you can about the company.
7. Short answers
Limit your answers to around two minutes. Be clear.
We are in a time of change. To be successful we need to adapt and respond to the opportunities that come our way. Good luck!
Larry Pitman is a Business English Coach who helps condidates achieve peak performance when interviewing for a job