This post is based on the video – 7 Tips For Interviewing Online | How To Conduct A Skype Interview | Web Interviews
Hi! I'm Antonio Centeno. I'm the founder of Real Men Real Style. Today, gentlemen, we're going to speak about how to conduct an online interview via Skype, via GoToMeeting, via Google Hangouts.
Now, I've conducted quite a few interviews online.
I would say well into the hundreds because as I've been interviewing people from my company, I've also done interviews in which I'm giving a presentation online and I've done just Skype interviews for somebody's podcasts or for their vlog so that they can use that.
I've picked up a lot of this information along the way. We also did some research. And I think that if you've followed these tips, which I got seven of them by the way, so seven tips on how to prepare for an interview online.
7 Tips For Interviewing Online
I think if you follow this, you're going to really knock it out of the park or at least you're going to control what you can in these situations. Of course, things happen but you want to show up the interview knowing that, “Hey, I've done everything I can to control the situation and make this a success.”
Now, before we get into this, guys, I'm going to recommend you go check out the article at Real Men Real Style. The reason being, I've got a checklist there for you so go download that PDF checklist. The cool thing is when you grab this PDF checklist, you'll be able to print it right off and that's one of the things.
I mean, you don't want to have to think through this after you pull out this video and watch it multiple times. No. Just get the checklist. I go over everything there in the checklist so you can print that off, have it right there and you know exactly what to do to prepare for your interview.
#1 Properly Make The Schedule
Number one, what's the first thing that you need to do to make an interview successful?
Properly make sure that you've accepted and scheduled the interview. I can't tell you that how many times that because somebody didn't have it in their scheduler or they got the time zone wrong that we missed the interview. I've got a system. I used scheduler once. My friend, Remy, started this amazing company but there's a number of online schedulers out there. They can make this effortless.
Now, let's say you don't have too many interviews. It's not going to be worth you spending money for an online scheduler, well, then use Google Docs or Google Calendar. That's got a scheduler that will adjust for time zones.
You want to make sure though and you want to double check that you do have this properly scheduled. I've also got two calendars and I make sure they match together. Occasionally, they don't and when it's a really important interview, I make sure I visually go in there and make sure it's in both of my calendars. So get that date and time right.
In addition, set up a reminder. Again, I use Google Calendars for a lot of these. I set up multiple reminders, not only the popup but also I'll get e-mails sometimes 12 hours, two hours before.
Another thing I do is for me personally, this is a little bit of bonus here, but I batch everything because I'm the guy usually doing a lot of the interviews. I only open up Wednesdays right now in my schedule so I know that on Wednesdays, I'm just going to have a whole bunch of times that I'm speaking with people.
That helps keep me — with four kids, three businesses and all these other stuff that I've got going on, I know having one day that I'm doing this. Now, I know all you guys are not going to have that luxury but what you would want to say is, “Hey, you just don't do interviews over the weekend.” and if the company's asking for it, you may say, “Do I want to be part of this company?” Because to me, personally, you need to have boundaries.
Now, the last thing I'm going to say is figure out, is it an audio or both an audio and a visual interview? Sometimes I'll show up to an interview and I thought it was just going to be an audio and they get on Skype and they want to see a picture of me and all these other stuffs and yes, there are times that I'm not prepared for that.
My hair's all — I'm just not looking great because I wasn't expecting it, maybe up all night with the baby that I just didn't feel like dressing sharp for the day. So make sure that you understand if it's an audio or an audio and visual.
#2 Check Your Hardware And Software
Tip number two is check on your hardware and your software. You need to have a computer that can handle it. If you've never done an audio or a video online interview, you need to understand that there are certain bits of software, especially GoToMeeting, that these are going to require that your computer actually have enough RAM and that they have enough computational speed. You got to make sure that that is going to work so test it out. Make sure your hardware's ready.
One thing that you have to do, maybe you've got an older, slow computer, go through turn off things that you don't need. You got Dropbox running in the background. You've got Skype. You're going to use GoToMeeting. Well, turn that stuff off so it's not using resources. Another thing is that you want to make sure that you've got a great microphone.
This, again, is probably one of the biggest problems I see, is people think that their just regular computer microphone is going to be fine. That's one of the worst microphones.
There are two reasons. One, it's not usually the best quality especially on cheaper computers. The other reason is, it's right there in the computer so it usually picks up sounds that the computer is making so you're fan turns on.
It doesn't sound that great. I recommend that — again, go over to the article that's going to support this video and I'm going to give you some recommendations but right off, I use the Blue Yeti. I love that thing in addition to the 920 Logitech, I believe, camera with microphone actually works out really well and that gives me a really sharp camera that I even use to film some of these videos. So, your hardware and your software.
#3 Understand The Connection
Point number three, the connection. You need to understand that there are two parts to a connection. There's your download speed and your upload speed. Most people know their download speed but they don't even think about their upload speed.
Your upload speed is important because that is the signal that you're sending up and if you're doing one that has a video on it, you want to have a high enough upload speed so that you're not appearing pixilated.
In addition, you may only be on your computer at certain times of the day. You need to check up are there peak and non-peak times in which you're going to see a lot of usage?
Usually, peak times are going to be starting in the morning and actually, during the day, it's not usually too bad but in the evening and going later to the evenings, you see tons of people, especially from this small town, you've got a limited amount of bandwidth coming in, you may just have slower internet times.
So me, I've paid for 20-20, which is basically 20 download, 20 upload. I live in a small town. I've got fiber optics coming right up to my office and to my house but I will tell you in the evening — it's around 7:00 to 8:00 at night — everything slows down because it's just — we're limited by the pipe that's coming into my small town here in Central Wisconsin.
So make sure that you've got the resources available and if need be, what you can do is — so you could probably call your provider.
There are things online that you can check and I'll try to link them but one thing that you could do is have a back up internet source. So I got my iPhone set up so it tethers to my computer.
Hey, it's not going to be perfect but always be thinking of a back up. And actually, with hardware, you can do the same thing. Have a backup computer that's already on and running in case your computer crashes. Murphy's Law happens. Expect it and that's why we prepare.
#4 Control the Situation
Point number four is control the situation. I've been in interviews with people and all of a sudden, a dog starts barking in the background and it's — they didn't think to put their dog — I mean, you need to be prepared for that background noise.
So if you're doing an interview and all of a sudden your kids are running around — I understand some people are in situations which they have got to do it at home.
It's going to be 7:00, 6:00 and at 5:00 at night and the kids are back from school. Understood, but make sure to let the person know because you think you're having a good business interview and then somebody — some kid is back there just making faces.
It's kind of funny but you can't help but say, “Does this person even know this was a business interview?” but try to control that situation. Do what you can. I know not everyone can control everything but try to control that situation.
#5 No Multitasking During The Interview
Point number five, no multi-tasking. Turn off your phone. Turn off all these other things. Don't be trying to type out an e-mail while you're talking to me.
I can tell and I felt bad because I've even done these interviews and I have one guy the other day say, “Hey, just–” I ask that no one do any type of sending out emails and stuff even though you could probably do it. I want your full attention.
I respect and that's something, especially when I'm interviewing somebody, I want them to be paying full attention to be able to understand what I'm asking and be able to answer the questions.
And if you're actually doing the interview, try not to multi-task even though you're in the position of power, you should show respect to the other person.
#6 Practice For The Interview
Point number six, practice. Now, it may be a little bit hard especially with some of the software but Skype, you can definitely practice on that. You can practice on Google Hangouts.
Make sure that you know where things are at and that you're not making a fool of yourself that you've never used it before — not really making a fool of yourself but you want it — again, you can control actually getting used to Google Hangouts and you can practice doing this. GoToMeeting, maybe a little bit harder for some of you guys out there.
I know there are other ones out there but do what you can to practice it. Worst case, practice the interview with someone in person but make sure to practice.
And finally, point number seven, dress sharp or at least dress in a manner that you feel sharp and you feel prepared even if they're not going to see you because here's the thing, when you dress sharp, when you dress a bit better, you feel better and you want to hit this interview with confidence.
And in the chance that all of a sudden, the audio turns on or the video turns on — I've been in interviews with people and I've noticed that they dressed up for me.
Maybe it's because I'm a style guy but you know I wasn't going to judge them based on how they were dressed or at least I think I wasn't going to but when I saw that they went to the extra effort to put on a suit, to have nice tie on for a Skype interview, I'm like, “Wow! This person gets immediately an extra bonus point.”
Now, I'm not going to hire them just because of that but it does tell me they pay attention to details and they thought I was important enough to dress sharp.
Alright, so hopefully you found this useful — seven tips on how to prepare for an online interview.
Go grab the PDF download at Real Men Real Style. See you in the next video. Bye.
This post is based on the video – 7 Tips For Interviewing Online | How To Conduct A Skype Interview | Web Interviews