Monday, October 5, 2009

Jobs for Seniors: The Initial Telephone Interview

Now that you have a fantastic resume and an even better cover letter prepared,(pat yourself on the back for this achievement), and have submitted them to potential jobs for seniors employers through your job search engines, it will not be long before you get your initial phone interview. Personally, I think this is the fun time of the job searching process. You will receive a call usually from the company recruiter or someone acting in that capacity whose role is to perform an initial screening of candidates. The purpose of this screening is to find the best candidates out of all the interviews that appear to best fit the job description and company profiles and who are very interested in landing the job. If all goes well here, he/she will then probably schedule a face-to-face meeting with you next with the employer/recruiter. We touched on the job interview process in a previous article but let's go a little deeper in your preparation for this. Listed below are some general guidelines as to what to expect in the interview, as well as, how to handle the phone interview for retirees job.

Generally Be Prepared

The great thing about the initial interview being on the phone is that it gives you a chance to lay out all the pertinent documents in front of you such as your resume, company description, your tailored cover letter, the job description, and perhaps some notes on things you will want to mention in the interview. Obviously, to be prepared, you should do some research on the company so that you will not be ignorant of what the company does. For example you would not want to slip and say at some point you could be a great asset to their production of widgets when they are a health organization. I know this sounds ridiculous but when you might have multiple interviews for retiree jobs going on, it is easy to be confused. I know, I've been there before myself but I'll save you the details on my screw up.

Have a Great Demeanor

Basically, what I mean here is that you need to come across as a good communicator.
  1. You need to be self-confident but don't appear overconfident. Hopefully, your great preparation will help you with this.
  2. You need to be concise with your points so as to not ramble on with your answers to questions. This is a very important point and we need to discuss this one a little further. Most likely the recruiter is going to ask you upfront to tell him/her about yourself. This does not mean open the flood gates and tell your life story. They don't care if you won a spelling bee contest in the 6th grade! You will need to walk a fine line here to give them enough but not too much information. Here's an amusing but effective video from DiceTV that I think gets the point across well. How to Answer 'Tell Me About Yourself'
  3. You need to have a positive attitude and not allow fear or ego to get the best of you, sometimes a major problem with seniors looking for jobs.
  4. Be honest and if asked if you have a specific attribute or skill and the answer is no, tell them so. Perhaps, there is another skill you do have that will work instead

Be Ready for Many Questions
  1. Be ready to respond to the many questions that may be asked of you especially one that will surely be mentioned about what motivates you. We discussed this earlier in one of my previous articles: 'What happens when you get that call from a recruiter'
  2. Ask your own relevant questions that you hopefully have prepared in advance.
Article Source: Jobs for Seniors

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