Cornell University

Office of Career Services

201 Ives Hall, 607-255-7816

Phone Interview

Quick Tips for a Phone Interview (from Phone Interview Tips):
  • Timing:
    • Arrange the interview when you are available and can focus
    • Be in a quiet space (not on a bus in or in a dining hall)
    • Clear the room - Turn off the stereo and the TV. Close the door.
  • What to have accessible:
    • Keep your resume in clear view, on the top of your desk, or tape it to the wall near the phone, so it's at your fingertips when you need to answer questions.
    • Have a short list of your accomplishments available to review.
    • Have a pen and paper handy for note taking.
    • Keep a glass of water handy.
  • While on the call:
    • Turn call-waiting off so your call isn't interrupted.
    • Unless you're sure your cell phone service is going to be perfect, consider using a landline rather than your cell phone to avoid a dropped call or static on the line.
    • Don't smoke, chew gum, eat, or drink.
    • Smile. Smiling will project a positive image to the listener and will change the tone of your voice.
    • Speak slowly and enunciate clearly.
    • Use the person's title (Mr. or Ms. and their last name.) Only use a first name if they ask you to.
    • Don't interrupt the interviewer.
    • Take your time - it's perfectly acceptable to take a moment or two to collect your thoughts.

Other useful links:

How To Master Telephone Interviews

Phone Interview Tip

Phone Interview Tips