How to Ace the Financial Job Phone Interview

It’s not difficult to figure out the reason why some people think a phone interview can be more frightening than a face-to-face. Over the phone, you cannot see the interviewer’s expression when he asks a question. You will also have to convey your sincerity just by answering.

Most of the time, the source of fear can be the potentially awkward silences and extended pauses that occur when you don’t know what to say. For instance, when the interview is for an internal audit job, the questions may be more targeted and specific.

What if you don’t know the answers?

But put all your fears to rest because there are many ways to ace that phone interview and land the financial job of your dreams. Here are some of them.

Prepare yourself before receiving the call.

A phone call from a potential employer represents an important step in your finance job application. It’s not that hard to master the best way to talk over the phone and answer all the questions well. Planning for the job interview plays a big role in your preparation.

The call won’t be unscheduled. You will get sufficient notice from the company before the actual finance job interview. A day or so before your call, research what you need to know about the company. Come up with a list of your achievements and skills. Rehearse with someone you trust to get an objective critique of your phone conversation skills.

The company you plan on joining may have a certain way of hiring new finance employees. Some of the company’s strategies are evident in the way they grow. Read what you can about the company, including their hierarchy and the way they’ve survived over the years. This knowledge will come in handy when you’re answering questions about your career goals. If the company has a long history of internal promotions, you can mention your intent toward a long term career move.

Smile.

It’s not difficult to smile when you’re in a job conversation face-to-face and you’re wearing your best suit, but this can be quite a feat when you’re in your house clothes and you know the interviewer can’t see your facial expression. But take note that your smile will reflect in your voice. There’s a big difference in terms of tone between someone who is smiling while talking and someone who isn’t.

Employers can hear your smile, your awkwardness and even your dissatisfaction just by listening. Because of this, you should act like you’re talking to the person face to face. Wear presentable clothes and sit in a place where you would normally receive visitors. If you’re totally invested in the interview, your voice will convey your seriousness.

Have your notes in front of you.

The thing about a job interview over the phone is that you can take your notes with you. You’re your notes ready and a pen poised to write. You can even make a draft or an outline of the things you want to highlight, such as your financial training. Have your resume in front of you, together with your cover letter. This way, you’ll know which section the interviewer is reading at the moment he asked certain questions.

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