Scary movies aren’t everyone’s bag of tricks – pun intended – but people dress up as their favorite characters this time of year, princesses and zombies included. Well, the house down the street ran out of candy, just like your last employer. The company let you go to fend for yourself in the twilight of job-hunting. Startups fire almost 25% of their employees within the first year. After they let you go, do you want to find that dream job? Then it’s best you not act like Freddy Kruger or Jason. It’s understandable being desperate and eager to get a job, but you don’t want to appear so, escaping the asylum of job seeking.
When some people get nervous, they forget to breathe. Some, on the other hand, forget to blink. Actually, during normal daily activities, people blink 18 times per minute. However, when an electronic device is involved that instinct is greatly reduced causing eye problems in 50-90% of people who work with computers. While you’re not typing a document or creating a presentation, you’re still looking at a computer screen for an extended amount of time. As rudimentary as it may seem, make the conscious effort to ensure you’re blinking during your video interview… not only for the health of your eyes, but for the sake of simply not being creepy.
So I can’t stare at the screen, but I have to look at the camera…? Exactly. The point is to have a normal conversation, even though it bears more weight than your average talk with a colleague. Scary movies leave their audience tucked under a blanket, toes hidden as to not be captured by the Boogeyman, with one eye uncovered to reluctantly watch the next scene. Typically, that’s not a normal way to participate in a conversation. In a normal chat, you look at the person… with both eyes. The interview – video interview – is the conversation that can land you the job. In fact, out of 2,100 CFOs surveyed, 43% said the interview is where the candidates often mess up. Not looking at the camera for an extended length of time gives the interviewer the impression you’re shy. So air on the side of caution and use the traditional 3-5 second professional gaze as your go-to.
Or ghost, monster, whatever the girl in The Ring is… she gets a tad bit too close. Well, Samara has to get close enough to kill her victims with her stare, but that’s not your goal – hopefully – as a jobseeker. You want to be close enough to the camera that the interviewer not only can see you clearly but hear you clearly as well. On the same note, you don’t want to be close enough for them to see up your nose. If you’re too close to the camera, the interviewer won’t be able to see your body language. If you’re way too close, they won’t be able to see your facial expressions in their entirety. Those facial expressions are important considering 55% of communication is through the human face.
The last thing you want in a video interview – or any interview for that matter – is to scare the interviewer. You’re trying to get out of the well and past the employment ring, so pay attention when you blink. Digital screens tend to make users blink less than the average 18 times per minute, which can lead to problems like chronic dry eye. Sit at a comfortable distance from the screen; that’s not only good for eye health, it’s a better way to present yourself without invading the digital personal bubble. The most important thing to remember during your video interview is to conduct yourself as if it is a regular conversation, a traditional interview. Don’t lose the job opportunity by messing up the interview… that’s your chance to put your best foot forward.
Bio: Julie Salerno, VP Sales
Julie Salerno provides guidance and leadership to GreenJobInterview’s sales team and is responsible for the ongoing growth of the company’s revenues and profitability. She is involved in strategic planning, helping to managing the company’s resources, and improving its business processes.
Previously, she served as a partner and senior executive recruiter at Personnel Strategies, Inc.
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