I recently held a Q&A session in the stories section of my Instagram and I had a few questions asking about what I did for a living and if I will continue to share work wear– the short answer is yes! Those questions about what to wear for a virtual meeting, interview and how I balance being a corporate professional while blogging inspired this post series. Pre-pandemic I have had numerous virtual interviews. The majority of my career I have worked remote so I consider myself pretty savvy at conducting business remotely.
If you recently landed a job interview, congratulations! There’s a chance that it won’t be in person. In person interviews are one of the many things that corporations are now conducting virtually. This is a very new concept to many. So if you are looking for video interview guidance, keep reading because I’ve pulled together a few tips that I have personally used that may help you to be successful during your interview process.
Before the Interview:
We have all heard the phrase “dress for success” just because the interviewer can only see you from the waist up does not mean you can be business up top and pajamas down below. Dressing in traditional interview attire is still critical. Act as if you are going into the office to meet for your interview still– this will help you get into the right frame of mind for the conversations you will have about your potential career.
I have curated a few looks below that are professional, comfortable and will look polished on camera. These looks will be perfect for you to keep to maintain the perfect look for when you land the job and have your weekly video calls!
All of these tops are under $40
You want to look fresh-faced, not like you are going for a night out on the town. Incorporate these 4 easy steps into your makeup routine to video day:
- Use a nice foundation that is dewy or illuminating
- Dab on a concealer to cover any dark circles or dark marks
- Add a little highlighter to your cheekbones, bridge of your nose and across your chin, this will pick up light and looks great on camera.
- Time for blush. flushed looking cheeks always give a more youthful appearance
With video conferencing and interviewing the setup is one of the most important components so lets unpack that.
If you aren’t familiar with the video platform the interviewer wants to use, it is best to practice before the interview day. So download the app or log into the software a few days prior and do a few test call with a family member or friend so that you have a better understanding as to how it works.
Device placement– How you are viewed on the other side of the camera is key. If you are out of frame that would make for an awkward conversation. TIP: Get a shoe box and place your device ontop so that the camera is angled directly at your face, not too far back or forward you want to your laptop level with your eyes. If you need to grab another shoe box until the camera is perfectly leveled so that the camera frames from the top of your head to the bottom of your rib cage.
Lighting– Natural light is best, open the blinds if you can. If not, make sure your light source is near you so that the interviewer is not seeing shadows cast across your face and body.
Background– Your interviewer knows you are most likely in your home meaning you do not have to be against a blank white wall however make sure you are in a clean space without inappropriate objects within frame of the camera. If this is not achievable Zoom has a cool feature where you can mute your background and choose one of their virtual backdrops or upload one of your own.
Set a time for your interview for when you are most productive, everyone has that block of time during the day when they feel most dynamic. On interview day make sure you sign in 15 minutes early.
Backup communication plan
We all know technology can fail us at the most inopportune time. If this happens on your interview day do not freak out, your preparedness, ability to remain calm and light hearted will give them insight into how you handle problems. When setting up virtual meetings a phone number and dial code are always provided. Dial in and wait for the other party to join, in the interim type a message in the chat to let them know you are there.
Video interview best practices
If the pandemic is the reason you’re looking for a new job don’t be afraid to say so! Use this interview time to highlight all the ways in which you’ve productively used your time without work. Have you learned a new language or taken on a different skill — this will be sure to catch the interviewers attention and it will set you apart from other candidates!
Review the job posting and your resume again, see how your skill sets align with what the company is seeking in a new candidate.
Use post-it notes to write down your talking points you want to highlight about your career or the company you are interviewing about. Place your notes on the outer edge of your computer at eye level to your camera.
Don’t look distracted, maintain eye contact. It is okay to glance away or look down at your note pad if you are going to take notes.
Use appropriate body language.
Make sure you are in a quiet space where there will be no interruptions and turn all devices like cellphones and tablets on airplane mode.
Ask questions, don’t end an interview with ” no, I don’t have any questions” I will speak more about that in my next blog post where I will outline my top 21 questions that I ask during an interview.
This blog post will is a two part series, be sure to subscribe my email list on the right hand side of this post so that you get all new blog post alerts.
All my best,