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Telephone Interview Tips

During the lifetime of your career, there may be an occasion to have a telephone interview, before you have a face to face interview. Here are some tips that will benefit you during this process:

  1. Treat the TI (telephone interview) like a verbal resume.
  2. Have your resume, paper and pen, and a glass of water handy.
  3. The only goal of a TI is to set a face to face interview.
  4. Take the call in a quiet area of the house, no kids, barking dog, TV's or other distractions-disable "call waiting" if your phone has that service.
  5. "SELL" what you know the interviewer needs.
  6. Mirror your interviewer's voice: If he/she speaks fast, you speak at the same pace If he/she speaks slow, you speak you speak at the same pace.
  7. If you don't understand a question, or wonder what they are really looking for, ask for an explanation.
  8. Don't try to evade an answer. If you don't know the answer, tell the interviewer you will find out the answer and call back.
  9. If things sound good to you, say so, don't play poker. The interviewer can't see you, so he/she can't read your body language.
  10. Ask the interviewer at the end of the conversation where you stand and what the next step is (i.e. 2nd TI, conference TI, arranging a site interview, etc.)
  11. Do no initiate a conversation regarding compensation! That is only appropriate at the end of a face to face meeting when the employer knows you and you know everything about the job and the company. If he.she brings it up during the TI, feel free to discuss it, but keep it in general terms. Let the interviewer know you would be more willing to discuss compensation in person, after viewing the site and learning more about the job opportunity.

These tips were authored by Melinda Simon, a recruiter for Reed & Associates are part of her presentation Negotiating the Nurse Practitioner Role, which has been given at several universities in Texas that have NP programs, at the TNP (Texas Nurse Practitioners) conference, and during the lunch break at University of Texas at Arlington when they gave a certification review course. These tips have been found to be very beneficial during the interview process. Ms. Simon is a member of AANP and TNP. She received the President's Patron Award at the '98 Texas Nurse Practitioners Conference. She has been employed at Reed & Associates for 6 years.

Content Copyright 2000 Melinda Simon

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Last updated: November 6, 2000