I have noticed an increasing trend with companies and that is the phone interview. The phone interview is normally done with the human resources manager to pre select those sales candidates who will meet face to face with the hiring manager.
These interviews are not to be taken lightly. I have a customer and if human resources says NO, the Sales manager will not meet the candidate. Some of these human resources managers and sales managers have developed a symbiotic relationship and HR knows who’s going to work and who is not.
The first things I advise my sales candidate is if possible do not do the call on your cell phone. They are not 100% reliable yet.
Dress professionally as if you are in a face to face interview “clothes don’t make the man” but it can influence your behaviour and tone. Try standing up-it makes you feel differently than when sitting.
If you are doing the interview from home, get someone to watch the kids.
If you are doing it from work (this does happen) do it behind closed doors.
Have your resume on hand. This will help you remember dates and details. You should prepare for this interview and take it as seriously as a face to face.
If the prospective sales position involves a lot of phone time expect they are evaluating you on how you express yourself on the phone. Does the sales candidate mumble do they project confidence; is the vocabulary professional and clear?
It will be difficult to get “buying signals” from the person interviewing you so you will need to focus on what is being said. Prepare some well thought out questions to get them to speak freely.
Your goal with a telephone interview is to get to the next step; the face to face interview.