Virtual Appointments with Advisors & Specialists are now available for Members. To schedule an appointment or to learn about membership, contact Kelly Clark.
What Are Some Tips To Stand Out During A Virtual Interview?
Most job seekers today will encounter live virtual interviews. While there are some similarities with in-person interviews, there are distinct differences. It is essential to be comfortable with the virtual format so you can focus on the content of your presentation within the interview setting. Here are some key pointers.
 
1. As with in-person interviews, the “three P’s” rule applies: Preparation, Practice and Presentation.
 
Put together a presentation plan outlining three to five things you most want the interviewer to know about you. At a minimum, you should include:
·       Three strengths - Each time you tell a story it must be very clear to the interviewer what is the skill set or strength you are demonstrating. If it isn’t clear, then don’t tell that story.
·      Why you want to work in this industry and/or this function.
·      Why you want to work for this company – research not only the company, but also the person with whom you will be interviewing. Provide very specific reasons why you feel you are a fit.

2. Unlike an in-person interview, you will need to ”Stage Your Environment” where you will be conducting the interview. Be very mindful of the following:
·      Lighting – Walk around the room where you will be recording the interview. Try to find a spot where the lighting is even on all sides of your face and your entire face is highlighted. Light, natural or artificial behind your camera will provide the best lighting. A window, table lamp or external webcam light will all work. If you think you might be participating in Zoom meetings regularly, investing in an external light can be well worth the expense.
·      Camera angles – The most flattering camera angles typically occur if the camera is positioned a little higher than eye level. If needed, position your laptop at a higher level on top of some books, or, invest in an external webcam that you can position above your laptop or anywhere that takes advantage of good lighting.
·      Clutter – De-clutter the background or anyplace within camera range. If it isn’t possible to create a dedicated streamlined space, then consider a professional virtual background.
·      Distractions – Select a private space and consider using a headset to diminish or eliminate background noise. If you don’t have a headset, then try to eliminate anything that could interrupt your interview. Silence your cell phone and house phone, remove pets from the room and close windows.
·       Technology – Make sure you have a strong internet connection. Having a physical connection to the network is safer than using Wi-Fi. Click on your interview link well in advance of your meeting so you can test out your technology, camera, lighting and audio.

3.  Plan your attire.
 
Think about what looks good on camera and what is typical for the position/industry for which you are applying. In general, solids are a safe bet. Fine prints, dots and stripes can vibrate on camera and large prints can be distracting. Likewise, large, bold jewelry can be distracting and noisy. 
 
4.  During the interview:
 
·      Look at the camera as much as possible versus focusing on the screen.
·      Keep hand movements to a minimum. It can be very distracting within the limited camera range if your hands are moving around.
·      Smile – Even though the virtual setting can make it more difficult to create a connection with the interviewer, it is important to be yourself and be friendly. Never underestimate the importance of a smile.
·      Sit up straight – Don’t slouch or lean into the camera. Our body language has a large impact on our confidence.
 
5.  After the interview:
 
Promptly craft a thank you note. Include something from your discussion while reiterating your interest in the position and thanking the interviewer for their time.
 
Good luck!
 
- Jody Perl, Career Coach, CRC Board Member
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