Establishing Rapport on the Telephone

Most companies start the interview process with a telephone screen.  This is an important first step.  You must ace the telephone screen to be invited to continue in the interviewing process.  3.7 seconds is all it takes when two people connect on the telephone, for judgments to be made.

It is therefore extremely important to establish rapport quickly so that the telephone screen starts off on a positive note.  Even when the words you speak are the right words, the power of nonverbal communication is critical.   Since 93% of your image is transmitted by body language and tonality, it's important to master the use of these tools.

Here's some things you'll want to remember:

1.  Schedule the call during a time when you will have peace and quiet and no distractions.

2.  Stand up, or at least sit at a desk when making the call.

3.  Smile.  They will hear it in your voice.

4.  Pause before talking to assure that the other person has completed their thought/

5.  Murmur agreements softly to reassure the other person that the call has not dropped.

6.  Mirror the pace and tonality you hear in the other person's voice.

7.  Use short sentences and frequent pauses to best ensure clarity.

8.  Don't use a head set or the broadcast feature on your phone.

9.  Prepare for the call in much the same way you would prepare for a face to face interview.

10.  Make friends with the phone so you are comfortable speaking to prospective employers on it.