The job interview: its main characteristics
In most cases, the phone call serves as the first step before an in-person interview . It is thus used to effectively identify and eliminate candidates who do not correspond to the profile sought.
These are usually short conversations, lasting five to ten minutes . The recruiter will focus mainly on the analysis of the curriculum and its content. The goal is very clear: to confirm that the candidate in question is compatible with the job offer.
Do not underestimate the importance of this interview, as it is a key step in the hiring process. This is therefore your first opportunity to convince the recruiter of the company in which you want to work.
Peculiarities of the telephone conversation
It is not so important to talk about the advantages and disadvantages of this type of communication, the most important thing is to know its special characteristics. Everything will depend on your preparation and your attitude. Make sure to transform these traits into positive or negative aspects. You must adapt to their nature to shine and reveal your full potential.
Consider the following factors:
Body language is useless here. This means that your appearance, your dress or your body language will not matter.
However , extralinguistic communication remains decisive. This will now focus on factors such as voice, pronunciation, language tics and hesitations.
A technological barrier separates you from your interlocutor It is, in fact, more difficult to have empathy for a person you do not see, the conversation is, in fact, colder and more distant.
These calls are often unexpected . In general, you are not always informed in advance that you are going to be called for a job interview. You may therefore be surprised by this phone call at a time that is not always appropriate. Your ability to react will then be decisive.
This is the art of responsiveness . You can be with family or having a drink with friends, or just be busy when the phone rings. In any case, you will need to identify your interlocutor as quickly as possible and switch to “candidate” mode.
Albert Mehrabian , a professor at the University of California, is the author of a major study on personal communication. His work enabled him to formulate, in 1967, the famous and very useful rule 55-38-7 on the importance of non-verbal language :
55% of the impact of the way we communicate comes from gestures and body language.
38% depends on verbal behavior, ie voice.
And only 7% comes from the words we use.
Now, in the case that concerns us, namely, a selection by telephone, things get complicated. Here you must succeed in convincing with only 45% of your communication potential , because the 55% associated with body language disappears when you cannot be seen. Your voice therefore becomes the decisive element.
To succeed in this telephone interview, training and preparation out loud is essential.
The importance of your voice
In all oral communication, the voice is the instrument through which our personality is expressed and revealed. This is also what reinforces our comments. It can establish the impact and the influence that we have on our interlocutor and can reflect our desire to reassure, to build confidence or to excite someone .
However, there are two things you need to consider:
Your voice is an innate aspect of your personality . We cannot choose our voice, it is intrinsic to us. However, it is possible to shape it a little.
Your voice can say more than you want it to . How we project our voice often depends on our mood. If we doubt, it will reflect a feeling of weakness and lack of confidence. Conversely, if we are happy, we will transmit this enthusiasm through our voice.
During a telephone job interview , it will be a determining factor. It is not what we say that will count then, but the way in which we express it. And, as we have just seen, the intention is what will take precedence. Your state of mind and your deep conviction must support your speech. Remember that your voice mixes your emotions with your words, and it is your emotions that will touch the sensitivity of others.
Factors such as the pitch, volume and intensity of your voice, as well as breathing can be used to improve your communication on the phone. There is also the very content of your remarks which is important. But we’ll talk about that later. The main thing, for now, is how you feel about this amount of information. Work on yourself and you will transmit the necessary positive energy.
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