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Fatal Phone Flaws

We all know how important the resume, cover letter, and interview are in landing that ideal job, but we often neglect the significance of those brief e-mails and phone conversations we exchange with potential employers. Before overlooking the role correspondence plays in the hiring process, Sharp Decisions has a few pieces of advice for you to consider. Let’s start with phone etiquette.

Imagine for a moment that your phone is ringing, and it’s a number you don’t recognize. Thinking one of your friends or a telemarketer is on the line, you press answer, mumble “yo” into the receiver, and continue watching the latest episode of “The Walking Dead” in surround sound. Unfortunately, that was the hiring manager for a high-profile financial firm, and you’ve just significantly decreased your chances of landing a job with them all because of poor phone etiquette and sub-par communication.

It goes unsaid how important answering the phone clearly is in making a positive first, or fifth, impression. You never know who the unrecognized number on your caller ID is, so always answer the phone as if it might be a hiring manager. Consider answering the phone with a chipper “Hello, this is [your name].” Remember, when speaking over the phone, be sure to speak slowly and articulately, so you will be easily understood.

Employers want to hire a professional, well-spoken individual. Your ability to communicate coherently over the phone is not the only factor to consider in projecting a professional image. Ring back tones and voice mail greetings are also important elements.

Sadly, that fresh ring-back tone of the newest Rhianna song is not going to help your chances. In fact, your best bet is to stick with the standard, if less trendy, ringing tone.

When job seeking, customizing your voicemail greeting is a wise choice. Record a message that clearly states your name and best methods for contact slowly and intelligibly. Check your messages often, and delete old messages. You never want to miss a job opportunity because of something as easily avoidable as a full voice mailbox.

Often, the hiring process moves quickly, and if you wait too long to respond, you may miss your opportunity to secure an interview. When you miss a call from an organization, call them back as soon as possible.

As always, Sharp Decisions wants to see you succeed. By applying for positions through Sharp Decisions, we will assist you in every step of the hiring process from your first correspondence with an employer to your acceptance of the position. Send us your resume, and see what we can do for you.

Stay tuned for our next segment, when we will address e-mail decorum.

Sharp Decisions values your input, so if you have any comments or questions, please send them to hbruner@sharpdecisions.com. We look forward to hearing from you and wish you the best of luck in your career quest.