Let’s be honest, no matter how prepared we are for an interview, the nerves are always there. Our nerves can make us stumble over our words and forget important bits that we wanted to talk about. And if interviews were not already hard enough, 2020 has thrown the system around and now we’re finding ourselves preparing for virtual interviews!
But worry not, we’ve got you covered. We understand that applying for jobs is stressful enough. While many experience anxiety with face-to-face meetings, it’s just as daunting for others to hop on a Skype call. We have some top tips for you to feel more confident with virtual interviews, and to ensure you’re engaging and putting your points across in the most effective way.
So what things should you be keeping in mind for your next interview?
Dress for the interview
You’ve still got to dress to impress! Dress head to toe in your smart clothes, you have no idea if you’ll have to get up at any point (would be a cringe-worthy moment if you stand up in a shirt and PJ bottoms!). Dressing smartly will show your boss you are motivated and enthusiastic. It will also help you feel much more in the mindset and this can boost your confidence.
Just because you’re not in the same room doesn’t mean they can’t tell if you’re not giving them eye contact. It’s so important to maintain eye contact because it shows the interviewer you’re confident and interested, and they will be able to connect with you. This might be a little difficult doing this virtually because staring at the screen might not mean you’re giving eye contact. In fact, looking at your camera will make it look more obvious that you’re giving eye contact. We completely get that this can feel weird and unnatural, but keep practising and have mock interviews over Skype.
Key cards and notes
So you’re not able to properly meet your potential employer in person. This can feel a little disheartening because we know how hard you work to try and get the job. You wish to show your interviewer your lovely personality which really shines through in person. However, virtual interviews have their perks too. Take full of your interviewer not being able to see what’s next to your laptop and create key cards! Your nerves can sometimes make you forget important points, so it’s worth having little reminders.
Think about your surrounding
This is so important – especially if you don’t live alone. Usually, when you go for an interview there’s the luxury of being taken into an office or quiet room away from any distractions. However, if you’re at home you need to make sure there’s no noise or distractions around you. Be sure to remind anyone else living in the house to not disturb you and to keep the noise down. Keep your television switched off and put your phone on silent. You don’t want anything to distract you from the interview.
Allow extra pause time
Don’t you hate it when you think someone has finished their sentence, and as you start speaking they carry on? Us too, it’s so awkward! This can be a little worse on a virtual interview because it might be harder to determine if they have finished their sentence. If your connection isn’t the strongest there could also be a delay on your end. That’s why it’s best to allow extra pause time in between the conversation. To stop yourself from feeling awkward it’s a good idea to take little sips of water when there’s a pause as this can help relax you.
Focus on the tone of your voice
The tone of your voice is really important when it comes to putting your point across. This is because we’re limited in the sense that we’re not in the same room as them. Varying your voice and using softer tones, sounding a bit more empathetic, as well as strong and decisive can create interest. It’s important to remember to project our voices a bit more during a virtual interview. with the person not sitting in front of us in the same room, it can be hard to judge how loud to speak. However, if you project your voice a bit more, not only will they hear you clearly, but you’ll also come across with a bit more authority.
Good luck with your virtual interview!