Do you want to work abroad? Do you want to ace your next video interview? Are you the kind of person that loves a good “how-to” list? This post is for you. We’ve put together our tips to help you succeed in your next video interview.
You’ll be surprised how many people apply for jobs without reading or understanding the job description. Check what experience you need. You may not be an expert, but understanding what relevant or transferable skills you have is essential. You’ll only know if you have these relevant transferable skills if you read about the position that you’re applying for in advance.
Your “why” is important. The two why’s that are common are “why do you want to do this job?” and “why do you want to work for this company?” It’s important to think about the company, their mission and their competitors. Why would you like to work for them instead of the competitor? What stands out about them and what makes the company different? These are common questions so prepare in advance (don’t just read Wikipedia). If you’re thinking about teaching English abroad for the first time, you’ll probably be asked why you’re thinking of a career change, so also be prepared for this question.
Recruiters want to know more about the person they’re hiring: what kind of person are they and will they be a good fit for the organisation? Relevant experience is a significant advantage. Think of some examples from your past that will apply to this situation. Remember point number one? You need to know about the job. A question might be, “how well do you deal with criticism? Can you give an example of a time when you had to deal with criticism?” The interviewer wants to hear about how you deal with it, but they want to hear about the situation. This can give them a context by showing that you have dealt with this before.
Knowing what to wear for a video interview can be difficult. You’re not going to an office; you’re in your home. Do you need to be smart, casual, or relaxed? You may not need to wear a suit, but that doesn’t mean you should wear a vest and baseball cap. A nice shirt or blouse will be okay. You need to get into the mindset that this is an interview. A nice shirt can make you feel more confident and ready to do business. A t-shirt might make you feel like you're chatting with a friend, and for some companies this is okay but it's better to be safe than sorry. Also, you may think the bottom half doesn’t matter. But if you need to stand up and move, don’t get caught with your trousers down!
Think about where you'll have your interview. Think about background noise and the internet connection (check your Wi-Fi signal strength). Choose a place with few distractions. Don’t have your mum cleaning in the background! If it’s in your bedroom, tidy up and make it look presentable. Imagine that interviewer will be in the room with you. No one wants to see underwear everywhere or inappropriate posters.
Mobile phones and tablets are great for Facetime and Skype with friends and family. But think about using a sturdier device. If you're an expressive talker or have to show a demo it’s better to have both hands free.
Names are easy to overlook but recruiters pay more attention to detail than you think. In 2003, it was okay to have “mad_Baz” as a Skype name address. Sure, "Baby-Princess" was a cute email address in high school. Times have changed. Rethinking your photo, username and email address can give a better first impression. That’s not to say you can't show personality or have to lace up those loafers and become just another suit. Just spend a few minutes setting up a job hunting account. Think of it as your alter ego, your Clark Kent or Bruce Wayne. To friends and family, you’re “Mad Baz”. To recruiters, you’re Barry, the clean, respectable guy with glasses and a side parting.
“Forest Gump” was a great film – a feature-length story about one man’s amazing life. None of us are Forest Gump. We all have great stories, anecdotes, and experiences. Does the recruiter want to hear about everything? No – just stick to the key points. Narrow it down and share what’s relevant.
Prepare for internet and computer issues; log on 15 minutes early. Check the camera and the background view. Get settled and ready to go. The recruiter will have more confidence in you if they see you’re logged on nice and early. There’s nothing worse than interviewing at 9 am, seeing someone log on at 8:58 and then delay for technical issues.
How can I relax? It’s an interview! Okay, so there will be an element of pressure. Just try not to stress too much. You can’t lose what you don’t have. The interviewer wouldn’t have asked you to be there if they didn’t see something they liked. Try and have another read of these tips, be confident and ace your interview so you can work abroad in no time.