Town Talk Features

The Velvet Hammer: 10.20.21

Q: I have an interview for a new job, which will be conducted virtually. I’m a bit rusty and haven’t been interviewed in almost 10 years and certainly not by Zoom. Any tips on landing a job virtually?

A: What’s most important for a successful Zoom interview will depend on your advance preparation. This should include addressing technical details, anticipating interview questions, rehearsing your responses, and dealing with details such as your wardrobe, lighting
and backdrop.

1. Deal with Technical Details in Advance
Before your interview, check your audio and video. For instance, so many people get tripped up because they think their mic is on when it’s actually on mute. If you see a red diagonal line over your mic icon, you’re muted, and your interviewer is not only going to be less than impressed but also won’t be able to hear you.

2. Log on Zoom Interview Early 
Chances are you will be a bit nervous so it’s best to log on to Zoom a few minutes before your interview time. This also will provide an opportunity for a final video check to ensure your wardrobe, hair, backdrop, etc., are in order

3. Zoom Interview Questions
Anticipate possible questions such as: Why you want the job; your past successes and failures; where you see yourself five years from now; what skill sets you bring to the job. Finally, have a few questions to ask about the company. Acing the interview will depend on how well-prepared you are and, again, how you look and sound.

4. Zoom Interview Answers.
Possible responses to the above interview questions:

  • You applied for the job to explore new challenges for your career development. Share specifics and positives about the company that show you’ve done your homework.
  • Provide a specific example of a past success and an example of a challenge with less than promising results and what you did to turn that problem around.
  • Down the road you look forward to a successful track record to continue to help the company noting some company successes.
  • Share the number of years of experience you bring to the job in your field of expertise. Cite specific skill sets that highlight your resume and anything else you feel is relevant.

5. Zoom Interview Tips

  • Choose a quiet, secluded spot in your home with adequate lighting.
  • Check your internet connection for lags or interruptions.
  • Use a clean background. Avoid virtual backgrounds.
  • Dress professionally (yes, wear pants). Because Zoom calls can wash out facial features, particularly for women, consider using makeup foundation along with eyeliner and mascara. If you need help, department store makeup counters provide complimentary consultations.

Video calls can be a great way to conduct an interview remotely. Bottom line: Be sure to look into the camera to connect with your interviewer, exude confidence and above all, believe in yourself.

Joan Lee Berkman is a marketing and public relations consultant. if you have a question for Joan, send it to


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