February 11th, 2020

TJ Kastning

Video interviews are a unique type of interview because of the interpersonal nature of video but the unrelational distance involved. So, it can be really challenging to find an easy flow. These best practice points apply to interviewers just as much to interviewees.

  1. Budget your time. There is limited time in the interview so try to spend it carefully. Don’t spend a lot of time agreeing when a simple nod or “understood” will suffice. Move the conversation forward.
  2. When specific questions are answered, answer with specific details. The temptation is to talk generalities.
  3. When you setup, try to have more light on your face than on everything else. Avoid a bright background and a dark you.
  4. Dress sharp. Not overdressed. Contextually relevant. The west coast is more relaxed. The east coast still hasn’t abandoned the tie.
  5. Control your sound. Some mics are great. Some are terrible. Using headphones with a mic tends to equalize the audio quality for everyone. Minimize background noise distraction. A quiet room at the library is a good option.
  6. Expect audio lag and wait just a few seconds to let the conversation settle before you speak. It’s normal for people to step on one another in a video conference but waiting a bit will mitigate it. You shouldn’t be in a hurry to talk anyways.
  7. Don’t bundle your questions. The temptation can be to ask three questions at once. Typically you get poor answers. Once concise question at a time.
  8. Active listening is key. Don’t think about your next question. Interviewing is about building trust; careful listening and understanding is key to building that trust.
  9. Show up five minutes early.