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Hold The Phone Interview: Be Nice to Callers

Job seekers mind your manners when answering calls from strange numbers. (Kiwanja)

Job seekers mind your manners when answering calls from strange numbers. (Kiwanja)

Looking for a job? A refresher in phone manners might be in order.

While it’s always good advice to be polite when answering the phone and anytime you interact with your fellow man, modern custom allows that we relax our manners when answering a call from an unknown source. After all it’s probably a telemarketer.

If you’ve posted your resume online or submitted applications for jobs, you’ve invited calls from unknown sources. Be prepared for calls from numbers your don’t recognize and be polite to those on the other end of the phone, said Jane Turkewitz, author of the blog Let’s Talk Turkey, that shares recruiters’ trade secrets with job seekers.

Now that your resume is circulating, you need to get rid of that “f- off ” tone of voice you give to telemarketers who bug the crap out of you. Every time you answer the phone, you could be talking to a potential employer. It’s O.K. to say, “I’m sorry, but could you repeat where you are calling from and the position this refers to?” Once you know where the caller is from, assure that person that you are very interested in discussing the position in question. I can’t tell you how many times an interview has gotten off on the wrong foot because someone answered the phone thinking I was trying to sell them a set of knives or a slab of beef.

I suppose it to just good advice to be nice every time the phone rings. Karma will get you back.

Many try to let voice mail run some interference for them. Let the caller leave a message so you can call back armed with awareness and prepped to talk the talk. Does anyone have an opinion or well-baked philosophy on that strategy?
Leave a comment below or drop me a line,

For more phone interview tips read Jane’s Prepping for the Phone Interview primer.

(Phone Call by Kiwanja, CC3.0)

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3 comments for “Hold The Phone Interview: Be Nice to Callers”

  1. [...] — Part 2 Published March 25, 2009 Interview Tips , Uncategorized Yesterday, TheLadders picked up my posting on how to behave on a phone interview. (Thanks you Ladders!) The News Editor [...]

    Posted by Prepping for the Phone Interview — Part 2 « Let’s Talk Turkey | March 25, 2009, 4:44 am
  2. [...] Hold The Phone Interview: Be Nice to Callers [...]

    Posted by Why Did the Recruiter Reject You? | | April 14, 2009, 7:47 am
  3. [...] Hold The Phone Interview: Be Nice to Callers [...]

    Posted by Marc Cenedella: Leaving the Right Voicemail Message | | May 11, 2009, 8:36 am

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