Walk Me Through Your Resume
Your interviewer wants to know your career progression. Walk through each position and your career progression and ensure that information listed is accurate and succinct. Stick to a few key points per job role and include any information related to large projects or initiatives you piloted.
Example Response: My most recent role was at Techfusion Corporation where I spent the last 10 years in the sales department. I started as a sales representative and in my third year, I transitioned into a managerial role. I now lead a team of 20 salespeople and oversee the service of about 100 accounts.
Funny Phone Interview Questions
Laughter helps lower the defenses. In an interview, you want honesty and the interviewee wants to create the best possible version of themselves. Cut through that with funny questions to ask. You’ll get them laughing, and then you’ll get their honesty.
Here are 6 funny phone interview questions:
46. What do you think of garden gnomes?
One of those phone interview questions that will always get a chuckle.
47. If you ran away and joined the circus, what would your performance be?
It’s funny, but you’ll know if they’re creative or bold by the answer.
via: Pixabay / Free-Photos
48. Why do tennis balls have that yellow fuzz on them?
See how well they speculate, all while having a chuckle.
49. If you were a brand, what would your motto be?
Since they’ll represent your brand, you want an answer here.
50. How would you sell ice cream in Antarctica?
A great one for people who are interviewing for a sales position.
51. What would your first steps be in a zombie apocalypse?
How well do they handle a crisis…even a ridiculous one?
Find A Quiet Environment
Find a quiet space where youll be able to hear the interviewer loud and clear. This will make sure you listen to everything they have to say and that you get all of the information you need.Turn off the television or music, and close the door to the space youre using for your interview. Remove any background noise and interview in a quiet space to demonstrate your professional courtesy and let your interviewer know youre taking this job interview seriously.
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Schedule Telephone Interviews On The Same Day
When scheduling your interviews, evaluate your phone interview questions and estimate how much time youll need with each candidate. Provide a little extra room in your schedule, in case the candidate is especially talkative or has more questions than you anticipate. You dont want to rush through them or cut them off abruptly if you can help it.
As with any interview, its best to ask the candidate for their availability first and try to work around it. This could mean being available during the lunch hour, or outside of normal business hours. This may be more common if youre interviewing candidates across multiple time zones.
If possible, schedule all your interviews for the same day. Having conversations close to each other helps you remember things you liked and didnt like about each candidates answers, and also allows you to evaluate them on a more equal footing.
Common Phone Interview Questions And Answers To Prepare For
Although a brief conversation, phone screens are an integral part of the interview process, so be prepared with glowing answers.
If you’ve applied to jobs lately, you’ve probably had a recruiter or hiring manager reach out about a phone screening: a brief phone conversation that takes place before scheduling an official in-person interview.
A phone screen simply ensures no one’s wasting time. The recruiter has already seen your resume and now has a few follow-up questions to ask to make sure you could be a good fit for the open position. Additionally, you can hear more about the company and the job and decide if this is an opportunity worth pursuing.
Phone screens are typically brief anywhere from 10 to 30 minutes. Although it’ll be over before you know it, there are a few common questions you should prepare to answer.
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Research Common Interview Questions
Dont forget to prepare for questions you might be asked during your phone interview. Start by reaching out to people in your network who have worked or interviewed with the company in the past and ask them about potential interview questions.
If you dont know anyone with connections to the company, dont sweat it. There are other ways to get the inside scoop on the interview process. For instance, Glassdoor has interview questions and reviews that can give you a better idea of what will be asked in your interview.
If youre interviewing for internships, you need to be prepared for a different set of questions. Be sure to check out our list of common internship interview questions and know how to answer them.
Follow Up If You Dont Hear Back
If you dont hear from the hiring manager in a week or so, dont hesitate to follow up to see where they are in the process. They may still be conducting interviews and thus have no updates for you, but checking in keeps you top of mind when they go to narrow down candidates.
It could look something like this:
I hope all is well! It was really nice speaking with you last week.
I just wanted to follow up and see where you were in the hiring process for the sales development representative role. Im still very interested in and excited about this opportunity, so please let me know if theres anything else you need from me to help in making your decision.
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Clear Your Mind Of Bias
The purpose of the phone screen interview is to determine whether a candidate deserves an interview. Bias can diminish its effectiveness. If you were impressed by a candidates resume and youre already determined to bring them in for an interview, the call is obsolete. Conversely, if you dont like this candidate because of their cover letter or resume, youre likely to deny them the opportunity anyway. Avoid the risk of making a bad decision by being objective.
Good Questions To Ask During A Phone Interview
Tailor the phone interview questions below to suit your industry and the role youre hiring for. But consider, too, the candidates professional history, or lack thereof. A recent college graduate cant refer to their career successes, for example, but screening questions can be framed to allow candidates to draw on their experience in course seminars and team projects, as well as their volunteer work and self-taught skills. Leadership, drive, industriousness, talent and other valued qualities can be demonstrated in many ways.
Give the same consideration for candidates with a gap in their work history, such as a parent reentering the workforce after raising a couple of kids, or an out-of-work professional two months after a layoff. Follow this list of five phone interview tips:
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How To Prepare For A Phone Interview
Whether youre trying to launch a career, land an internship, or get into your dream school, first impressions are everything. To get an offer letter, youll need to dazzle the interviewer and showcase yourself in the right light.
Before you hop on the phone, check out these pre-interview tips to make sure that youre prepared and ready to impress.
Know Who Will Be Calling You
In many cases, youll be interviewing a recruiter, hiring manager or your direct supervisor. Do an online search to determine your interviewers role at the company. If youre interviewing with a recruiter, youll get more general questions regarding your experience. An interview with your direct supervisor, however, means youll get in-depth questions related to your industry and role.
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Focus And Cut Out All Distractions
Make sure youre not distracted. Turn off the TV. Let me repeat that. TURN OFF THE TV.
Nobody wants to ask you about your past performances and work history and hear Sponge Bob in the background. Dont think putting it on mute is good enough either. People can tell if youre distracted and delaying your answers to a potential employer because youre reading the crawler at the bottom of FOX News isnt going to score you any points.
Get comfortable, but dont get too comfortable.
Find a good spot to sit down and have all your prep materials nearby for easy access.
Sit at the kitchen table or at a desk.
Dont lay down. Dont slouch. Make sure distractions are not going to be an issue.
If youre doing the interview at home and youre not alone, make sure everyone knows youre going to be busy for a bit and to give you some privacy. Put the dogs outside. Pop in a video for the kids. Have your spouse keep everyone calm. At the very least go into a room where you can shut the door and focus on the task at hand.
So, now that youre up and dressed, lets get ready for that interview!
First and foremost, make sure youre presenting yourself in the most professional way possible, from the very first Hello, all the way to the Goodbye.
Ask Focused Interview Questions
Once youve established some rapport with the interviewee, focus your questions on the positions most critical skills and knowledge. The questions you ask should help determine whether a candidates qualifications, experience, workplace preferences, cultural fit, and salary requirements align with the position and your organization.
There are certain things that are must-haves for you to make any hiring decision. After starting off with the ice-breakers discussed earlier, youll want to ask questions that reveal deal-breakers. Do they have a bachelors degree? What are their salary expectation? Have they worked in a B2B sales environment for at least three years? Are they willing to travel two days each week.?
If the candidate doesnt pass muster with those initial screening questions , gracefully end the phone interview. For candidates who answered the questions satisfactorily, you can move on to the behavioral-based interview questions that delve deeper into the way the job seeker has used critical skills in past positions.
Knowing the typical problems presented by each of the jobs deliverables, youll ask candidates how they do their work to anticipate and prevent those problems from arising and how they solve them when they do arise. These types of questions go beyond skills and experience and get at the heart of how they conduct themselves at work.
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Top 20 Phone Interview Questions And Best Answers
Are you prepared for a phone interview? What will the interviewer ask you? Before you interview in person with a hiring manager, you may be asked to take part in a brief phone screen interview.
If you’re interviewing for a freelance or remote position or for any job with a virtual hiring process, you may have a longer and more in-depth interview. In these cases, a telephone interview may be the only actual interview you’ll have.
Key Skills And Accomplishments
To fill in this section, look at the job description for the role. Take note of the skills and experiences they emphasize. Jot them down. And if you have a past accomplishment that really shows your expertise in one of these areas, write down any highlights or key numbers that help quantify your success.
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How To Pick The Best Phone Interview Questions
via: Unsplash / Daoud Abismail
Having a successful interview is about more than having a ton of questions, it’s about choosing the right questions for that particular interview.
You’ve got all the best phone interview questions now. All that’s left is learning how to select the ones you need from the list above.
Here is how to pick the best phone interview questions:
The Dos And Donts Of Phone Interviewing
- DONT take the call in a car, outside, or anywhere noisy
- DO answer the phone with a professional tone Hello this is
- DONT smoke or chew gum during the call
- DO take notes and have your own notes handy prior to the call
- DONT take a long time to answer the questions
- DO allow the interviewer to interrupt you and ask follow-up questions
- DONT forget to prepare questions to ask the interviewer and write down new ones as youre talking
- DO prep for the dreaded salary question ahead of time in a mock interview
- DONT talk too quickly. Breath and make sure to enunciate
- DO make sure youre distraction-free to so you can focus and listen. You can scrub your counters later.
- DONT forget to send a post-interview thank-you note
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Typical Phone Interview Questions
Phone interviews are conducted just like in-person interviews. They are used by hiring managers and recruiters as a tool for screening candidates for employment.
Its important to take time to review the typical phone interview questions youll be asked and to prepare answers. In addition, plan on being prepared for a phone conversation about your background and skills.
Whats Something That You Worked On That Youre Most Proud Of
The recruiters perspective: Were looking for your passion were looking for what excites you. Theres no wrong answer besides having no answer. It shows your ability to get excited about something and to talk through your problem-solving process. We want people who are excited about the work that they do no matter what it is and can explain it in a concise way.
The answer: You can talk about anything, whether thats your work, hobbies or school. When someone says Oh, I’ve got the perfect thing that I can tell you about and they light up as theyre talking about it thats what were looking for. An engineer might talk about a side project they worked on and how they pulled data from a data set, drew insights from that data and then built an app. Were listening for the ability to explain things concisely and enthusiasm.
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How Far Along In Your Job Search Are You
Its important to understand how long the candidate has been job-hunting, how many other companies theyve interviewed with, and when they can start in a new position. If you want to hire quickly, you might rule out a candidate that is only casually exploring different opportunities. On the other hand, if the perfect candidate says theyve already gotten a compelling offer, you may speed up the process to avoid losing them to another company.
Tip: Be transparent about your hiring process and any timelines youre hoping to meet. If a candidates plans dont fit into your timeline, let them know. But, if you feel strongly about a particular candidate, dont be afraid to adjust your plans to accommodate them. Itll be worth it in the long run if you end up with the perfect hire.
Interesting Phone Interview Questions
You want an interview to be more than just checking boxes. You want it to be interesting…for you and for the interviewee.
That’s actually easy enough to accomplish if you interject some interesting questions into your phone call. These phone interview questions don’t just make the call more engaging, they tell you more about the person you’re talking to.
Here are 5 interesting phone interview questions:
29. What is your philosophy towards your work?
The word “philosophy” makes this far more thought provoking…and interesting.
30. Are you a hunter or a gatherer?
Get at the passive vs. aggressive angle of their personality.
via: Unsplash / Thanh Tran
31. If you could be a superhero, what would you want your superpowers to be?
They’re letting you know about their dreams and their insecurities.
32. If you won $20 million in the lottery, what would you do with the money?
How they handle money tells a lot about how responsible they are.
33. If you could be any character in fiction, whom would you be?
A unique way to get at the “favorite book” answer.
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Interest Positive Attitude And Good Communication Skills
Because an interviewer can’t see you during a phone interview, you have to rely on your vocal inflections to convey how you feel about the job. Avoid sounding distracted or tired while talking. Instead, project enthusiasm in your voice to let the interviewer know you are appreciative of his consideration of you and excited about the possibility of receiving the job. Have a list of questions prepared to ask the interviewer to demonstrate your interest in the job. Listen carefully to what the interviewer says, and practice a two- to three-second pause after the interviewer poses a question to avoid interrupting him while he’s finishing his thought. Speak clearly and slowly enough — with minimal instances of “um,” “ah” or “you know” — so that the interviewer can understand you without having to ask for clarification. Also, strive to use proper grammar and avoid negative words whenever possible, such as “can’t,” “don’t” and “won’t.”
The Most Common Phone Interview Questions
One of the biggest things people wonder about a phone interview is what kind of questions they’ll be asked. Unfortunately, there is no set answer to this, as the length, content, and types of questions in a phone interview can vary greatly from one employer to another. Some companies will only ask a few basic questions, while others might conduct a full-blown interview over the phone. Because you have no way of knowing what to expect, it’s always better to be fully prepared for any question you might be asked.
Some typical phone interview questions you should be able to respond to are:
Tell me about yourself.
What interests you about this position?
Tell me about your responsibilities in your current/last role.
Why do you think you would be a good fit for this position?
Why are you leaving your current job?
What is your biggest strength and your biggest weakness?
Why do you want to work here?
Name a challenge you recently faced, and tell me how you handled it.
What do you know about our company and what we do?
What is your applicable experience for this position?
What kind of environment do you work best in?
How do you handle pressure?
What are your career goals, and how does this position fit into them?
How would a friend describe you in three words?
What are your salary expectations?
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