“While I wouldn’t recommend using it for a second round interview, online video interviews are a great way to screen interviewees for the first round,” offers Don Tebbe, an Executive Succession & Planning Consultant and Author. “It gives more texture to your interview than a phone call,” but he warns that it shouldn’t act as a substitute for all face-to-face meetings or for advanced rounds of interviewing.
Technology exists to make our lives easier: By utilizing online platforms like Zoom, WebEx, GoToMeeting, Skype, or Google Hangouts, “…you can leverage technology and increase cost effectiveness at your organization,” according to Tebbe.
Having conducted many screenings and interviews over the course of his career, Tebbe noticed a number of variables that impacted the overall success of such interviews. Using those experiences, and combining tips from those online meeting providers, he drafted the following checklist to help all participants prepare for a successful session.
Try to be yourself as much as possible. The reason recruiters conduct video interviews is so they can get a sense of your personality and demeanor in addition to the responses to your questions. If you’re terribly camera shy, get a couple of good friends to practice with you over Skype.
Just as you would in a face-to-face interview, make eye contact. In this case, “the eye” is that little lens on the webcam, not the faces on the screen. Look at the camera, not the screen. We are drawn to look at the people on the screen, so try to have the screen image and the camera as close together as possible.
Be succinct but direct in your responses, and toss it back to the interviewer to see if they want to hear more. Say something like, “I can elaborate on that if you like,” or, “that’s a highlight of how I accomplished that goal, would you like for me to provide more detail?”
Don’t let the technology get in your way. Candidate are probably not rejected because of bad lighting, but there are some things you can do to make the technology less present and less of a distraction to the communications process:
Don Tebbe is an author, consultant. A veteran leadership succession consultant and executive recruiter, Don’s the author of the BoardSource book, “Chief Executive Transitions: How to Hire and Support a Nonprofit CEO.”
This post was originally published on our sister site, ThirdSectorToday.