The Rise Of Job Promis­cu­ity

These days, when you ap­ply for a job, you can start with a Skype in­ter­view. Sounds easy? Well, there’s a fine art to get­ting it right.

CLEO (Malaysia) - - CONTENTS -

To go or not to go?

So your dream em­ployer has of­fered you a Skype in­ter­view. (Hooray!) But be­fore you cel­e­brate the prospect of be­ing able to wear no pants in this job in­ter­view — err, they’re hid­den, right? — there are a few things to con­sider so that you can put your most pro­fes­sional foot for­ward, and score the gig.

1 DRESS THE PART

Dress­ing well is as much about your headspace as it is about mak­ing a good im­pres­sion, says Karen Win­field of cor­po­rate train­ing cen­tre PD Train­ing ( pdtrain­ing.com.au). You want to pre­sent your­self the same way as you would for an in-per­son in­ter­view. “Dress [to suit] the cul­ture of the com­pany you’re in­ter­view­ing for,” af­firms ca­reer coach Kate Southam.

2 STYLE THE SPACE

Think about where you want to po­si­tion your­self. For starters, a messy room just doesn’t scream ‘pro­fes­sional’. “Choose a neu­tral back­ground (ideally a clean wall), so there are no dis­trac­tions for the in­ter­viewer,” Karen says. And if you have a framed uni de­gree, hang it be­hind you. “A lit­tle ‘stage craft’ is a great idea,” Kate says. Also, if your chair swivels, swap it for a still op­tion.

3 GET THE LIGHT RIGHT

You want the light in the room to shine on your face, but not so bright it makes you squint. “Lit from be­hind, and you’ll look like some­one who doesn’t want to be iden­ti­fied,” says Kate. “Lit from above, it can look a bit Hal­loween. Nat­u­ral light from the front onto your face is best.”

SWITCH OFF YOUR 4 NO­TI­FI­CA­TIONS

Turn off cal­en­dar alerts, news­feeds and soft­ware up­dates; they could all cause a dis­trac­tion or make you pull a face if they pop up on-screen mid-in­ter­view. “Keep your fo­cus on the in­ter­view by turn­ing off pop-ups, and set your Skype sta­tus to busy,” Karen says. And put that mobile away, too!

5 TIME IT RIGHT

If you live in a busy house­hold, sched­ule a time when you have the place to your­self. Im­pos­si­ble? Then brief ev­ery­one to keep a lid on it. “Make sure [they know] that you’re ab­so­lutely not to be dis­turbed un­less the house is on fire,” Kate says. “You also want to avoid the hours when any nearby con­struc­tion is in ac­tion or when school is out.”

6 TEST­ING, 1-2-3

Make like a big-time muso and do a sound­check. Small sounds can be am­pli­fied on video calls, so don’t click pens, wear ban­gles that jin­gle or sit on a chair that squeaks. “Do a tech­ni­cal check the day be­fore to make sure ev­ery­thing is in work­ing or­der, in­clud­ing the mic if you’re us­ing one, the In­ter­net speed and con­nec­tion, as well as your com­puter,” Kate sug­gests.

RE­HEARSE 7 YOUR SPIEL

Kate sug­gests do­ing a mock in­ter­view (us­ing a mirror or a friend to spot) to help you pick up any ges­tures that could send the wrong sig­nal, such as scratch­ing your nose or even brush­ing your hair out of your face. “You want to know if you make a smirk or look away when an­swer­ing a ques­tion or if your hand ges­tures are huge and ap­pear to be ro­botic,” she ex­plains.

8 STUDY UP

Just be­cause you’ve got ac­cess to Wikipedia doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be well prepped for a few chal­leng­ing in­ter­view ques­tions. “Don’t think that be­cause there’s a screen be­tween the two of you, you

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