Digital interviews are more common than ever these days as we all navigate through Covid-19. While no longer considered unusual, they are still awkward—especially if you're not prepared. Employers are looking for technical savviness, confidence, polish, and adaptability. Demonstrating these key skills virtually takes a little finesse and a great sense of humor. What's the best way to prepare? Check out these 7 tips for acing your next video interview.
1. Read the "directions" ahead of time.
Before you check your camera angle and lighting, check for specific directions or requests. Have they asked you to do anything before you begin? Have they sent specific questions or talking points that you should be prepared to respond to? If you skim the instructions, you could miss critical performance-related information. Don’t rush to get in front of the camera and overlook a critical pre-interview detail.
2. Choose a good place to take the interview.
Choose a place with a neutral background and avoid distracting, messy, loud, or overly personal surroundings. The lighting should be good, and your location should be quiet. Stay away from public places and if you’re recording at home, make sure your family knows not to interrupt you.
3. Test things ahead of time.
Check your internet connection, speakers, microphone, and angles. Make sure everything is in place and working properly before you begin.
4. Dress the part.
Making a great impression starts with how you present yourself during the first few seconds, so treat video interviews like you would an in-person interview and dress to impress. Make sure you look polished, professional, and well groomed.
5. Practice what you’re going to say.
Never go to an interview planning to "wing it." Practice introducing yourself and giving people a little information about your background and experience. This should be no more than 60 seconds or so. If they want more details, they'll ask you follow up questions, so try not to ramble. Be able to tell them why you want the job, why your experience is relevant, and how you'll add value. Practice these talking points ahead of time and consider recording yourself to see how you sound.
6. Don’t watch yourself talk.
Look into the camera and not down at the thumbnail of yourself when you talk. Making eye contact is a big indicator of confidence. It can be more difficult to build rapport with your interviewer when you don’t have the benefit of a face-to-face meeting. By looking into the camera, you’ll help create a stronger connection with the person on the other side.
7. Keep Calm & Carry On.
Technical issues, awkward pauses, and unexpected incidents happen. If something unexpected goes wrong, don't let it alter your enthusiasm and momentum. Do your best to take a deep breath and stay calm. Employers are looking for people who are adaptable and resilient. Be the person who can smile and move forward with confidence.
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