Video job interviews are becoming more and more common. Thanks to technologies like Skype and Zoom, companies now have a way to set up face-to-face meetings without having to bring you into the office. This saves both you and them time and money. You don't have to take time off from work or pay for parking, and they don't have to coordinate multiple people's schedules in the office. That said, most job seekers haven't had any formal training on how to prepare and nail a video job interview.
"People hear what they see." - Doris Day
While there is much to consider when getting ready for a video job interview, one of the most important thing you can do is assess what the employer will see when talking to you. The following three tips will help to make sure the employer likes what they're viewing:
1. Neutral, uncluttered backdrop. You want the focus to be on you and what you're saying. A busy background filled with personal items is distracting and can even create bias. If the person interviewing you sees something they don't like, it might cost you the job.
2. Camera at eye-height. Many rookie video job interviewers make the mistake of conducting the interview on a laptop. They push the camera back. In doing so, it makes them look like they are staring down at the interviewer. This creates and uncomfortable, dominating stance on your part. You need to make the camera eye-level so you feel like equals. Prop that laptop up on some books if you have to!
3. Brightly lit. If you look like you're hiding out in a cave, the employer will find it hard to take your seriously. It also sends a secretive vibe that can feel negative. Take a few lamps and put them on the other side of the camera, facing your face. This will create a more uniform light and make you look better too!
Taking time to fully prepare for a video interview is worth the time and energy. The more you know about the right way to conduct a video interview, the easier it will be to make a great first impression. Hopefully, resulting in a second interview!
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