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Recovering From a Bad Telephone Interview

18618154_mTelephone interviews can be a strange process. You are speaking to someone you have never met before and you need to make a good first impression which is sometimes really difficult over the phone. That’s why a lot of candidates feel they fail at the telephone interview stage and fear they will not be invited to the face to face interview.

But failure is impossible (unless you do something absolutely out of character i.e. you are rude on the phone). If for some reason you are not chosen to meet the interviewer face to face it could be for a number of reasons:

  • Someone else’s phone manner was slightly more fitting to the company
  • Your skills do not match what they are looking for
  • The telephone interview stage was very, very competitive
  • They have stopped recruitment for the position to re-assess

Either way you should not look at this as failure – you should look at it as a learning curve. What you learn from telephone interview mistakes can help you to update your CV template, be more confident in your next job interview and it can make you more determined.

However if you genuinely feel that you have underperformed and you are very keen on the position then you need to highlight this to the employer. Being tactful and honest about your telephone interview and where you think you could have made improvements will probably score you points with the interviewer.

If you have been invited back for a second interview but still feel your telephone manner could have been better then be sure to bring this up with the employer:

  • Be honest – tell them it was not your best interview and that you feel you could have done a better job
  • Thank them for their time and explain that you are grateful as you feel you were not performing at your best
  • Be open about mistakes you have made. Don’t wait for the interviewer to bring up your phone interview – approach it on your own.