Phone Interview Questions and Answers Examples - How to Prepare for Phone Interviews (2023)


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Phone Interview Questions and Answers Examples - How to Prepare for Phone Interviews// Wondering what to expect during a phone interview? In this video, we will show you how to answer a phone interview and how to master phone interviews.

I will teach you what to expect in a phone interview for a job so when you’re scheduled, you already know what to expect in a phone interview with HR and how to answer phone interview questions. At the end of this video, you will be able to learn how to ace a phone interview, especially after gaining more information about common phone interview questions and answers.

Make sure to like this video and subscribe to this channel for more phone interview tips and questions or telephone interview questions and answers. Wifi high five!

FREE DOWNLOAD: Follow Up Email Templates - Use these to craft the perfect follow up email after your interview to hear back & land the next interview:

FREE DOWNLOAD: “Tell me about yourself” worksheet to help you craft your BEST answer to the most common interview question!

WATCH: How to Not Ramble in a Job Interview

WATCH: 5 Questions to Ask in a Job Interview

WATCH: 8 Ways to Answer: “Why do you want to leave your job? (Voluntary, Layoffs, & Fired)

WATCH: How to Negotiate Your Salary - 40%+ Increase Your Salary!

WATCH: How to Build a Story Toolbox - The Powerful Formula to Answer Any Interview Question

WATCH: How to Send a Thank You Note After an Interview and IMPRESS Them!

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Work earnestly, speak kindly, act sincerely. :)


- Hey everyone,: this is Self Made, Millennial., I'm, Madeline Mann, and in this video I am going to spill all the juicy ways to absolutely crush a phone interview.

I work in HR, so I'll tell you how we are scoring your interview.


We are looking for, how to prepare for it, how to impress the interviewer, and what to do after the interview.

You'll have a black belt in phone interviews by the end of this.

I tell it like it is for all of your career and job search.


So make sure you subscribe to this channel and hit the bell to get a new video.

Every Thursday.

These methods have helped my students pass phone interviews at companies like Google, Apple, Sony, Amazon, Netflix.


These tips will get you there.

And stay to the end, because I tell you my number one tip for maximizing your salary negotiation power when the conversation turns to money.

Here are some rapid fire first tips to start us off and then I'm going to walk you through my exact script.

First, phone interviews are often a half an hour or less.

You need to be concise.

Every answer you give should take a minute or less.

Yes! If.

They don't get through all of their questions during that call.

That increases the likelihood that you will be rejected.

I have a video on how to not ramble in an interview, and so I will link that in the description.

Second, have notes.


Here are the notes.

I have out, and you know, take notes on this.


I have notes on my elevator pitch.


Tell me about yourself: answer.

I have the verbiage of why I left my last role.

The verbiage, of what salary I want.

I, have notes on the company.

Why I'm interested in it.

And then one to three accomplishments that I think that they would be impressed by based off of the job description.

All of these things are so easy to choke on when you're actually asked about it.

So why not have the answers right in front of you?, Of, course.

Third, then take copious notes throughout the call.

Come on.

They are going to give you all of the answers of what they are looking for in this role.


That language that they say, parrot it back to them in future interviews about yourself.

Focus on those things.

You are going to forget it.

If you don't take these notes, so don't be reckless and fritter this opportunity, away.

Take them notes.

Don't, be a fritter.


Fourth, always ask questions.

If they ask you.

Do you have any questions for us? You got to! If.

You need help with this part.

I will link a video that gives you five questions to ask in a phone interview, but I'll actually also give you one here that I didn't mention in that video, which is gold.

If I sense that the role has been open for a while, or they tell me that it has, I'll, ask something like.

How far are you into the search for this role? Has? It been a few weeks, months?, Sometimes they'll, say something like.

It's been a few months, it's tough to find the right, person.

And, I'll ask.

What seems to be missing from a lot of the candidates? You're speaking to? And then.

They spill the beans on what the hiring manager is most hung up.


Now, you know what to emphasize or also, if it's something that's a weakness of yours.

You can then strategize on how to address that area and overcome it.


You can hire a career coach like me, or someone else, and we'll make sure that you dominate it.


That one question has gotten me so far in interviews, it's crazy.


So next you need to understand what the company wants out of the call.

So I'm, going to walk you through the exact questions.

I will ask on a phone interview, and explain why each one is asked so that you can give the best answer.


Other companies may ask different questions.

This isn't pulled out of the Holy Bible of recruiting that all companies must follow.



This is a very common format.

So listen up, pup.

I start the call with some, you know, lame.

Pleasantries, like, how's, your Tuesday going? You, know the drill.

I'll then tell them the format of the call, and the first thing I'll start with is telling them about the company and the opportunity.

And I will ask questions.


Are you familiar with what our company does? Are you familiar with this technology and how it works? Now? This is not to put someone on blast, but to sincerely understand how deep I should go in my explanation.

For this though.

It is impressive if you know things about the company.

Literally saying things like yes, I downloaded the app, yes, I was on your website.

Last night., Yes I saw this news article of the new product that just launched.

You will instantly put yourself in an advanced bracket, higher than all of the other candidates.

Who didn't do that research.

So, respond briefly, showing that you looked into the company.

And also show a bit of passion, saying it sounds really interesting.


You can also say, but I'd really love to hear more about the company and the role from your perspective.

It is always helpful to hear how companies characterize themselves., Okay, so next, most people would ask you, tell me about yourself, or walk me through your resume.


Never ask that, because I've studied your resume, your cover, letter, your LinkedIn hardcore by this point.



Other people will hop on the phone and haven't studied your resume quite so closely, so they need your help.

To answer this question I have a free, worksheet download on how to answer.

The question.

Tell me about yourself concisely and effectively.

I will link that in the description and in the comments.

Because the kiss of death is, if you spend more than two minutes answering this question.

It should be quick., Next I ask.

What do you want in your next role? This is to understand if the current role is compatible with what they want.

And, to know.

If I have to close this candidate, at the end of the process, we really want them as our person, I'll use.

This information to get them excited about signing on with us.

I will reference these notes and emphasize those things since I know that those are important to them.

You all have to remember that this interview process is a two way.


We are trying to sell you.

While you are trying to sell us.

So for this, be honest and specific.


Of course, nine times out of ten, you will be asked.

Why did you leave your current job? Why? Do you want to leave your current job? Why? Did you leave your last job? This is an important question to understand.

To know in a pure form what you really want.


Also what situations are incompatible with you or drive you away.

I have a video that gives you eight scripts of how to respond to this.


You definitely need to hit that video up because, like I said, someone's gonna ask you this.

Then, next I ask.

What makes you interested in this role and company? Passion and interest, y'all, it's so important.

Most companies will look for this in their first call.

So companies want people who want them.


We want to make sure that your priorities line up with what we want for the role as well.

Emphasize things you like about the company, product, culture, responsibilities.

But, don't talk about your interest in the salary, benefits, commute., That kind of stuff is so generic and are such extrinsic.


You should also expect to answer questions.


Can you commute five days a week to our location? Are you legally able to work in this country? When? Is the soonest you'd be able to start? For those questions, answer, directly.

Then? You will likely get the salary question.

I, usually phrase it like.

Do you have any compensation, requirements? Other people will ask it more bluntly like.

How much do you make? Or? What's your targeted, salary? This is a tricky question that you must prepare your answer.


I will link a full video of how to respond to this question.

You've gotta check that out.

But I will give you a quick preview, and that is do not give them a number.

If you can help it.

Say you're looking for an opportunity that is the best fit.

The longer you wait to say what salary you need, the more negotiation power you have.

You'll get all of the really crucial tips in that video though, so check it.


Finally, I'll, ask pointed questions about the need to have skills on the job.


This is to ensure that anyone who moves onto the video or onsite interviews meets the core qualifications of the role.

Pay attention to what they choose to ask.

You, about.

Such as, a classic question for interviewing a product manager would be to ask them.

What's one of your favorite products right, now? And then ask them to critique the user experience and what they would change about.


Critical thinking is such a crucial part of being a product manager, that if they can't give you a well thought out answer to that question, then they will very likely not move onto the next round.


Best way to prepare for this section is to look up questions that are often asked to your profession, and to study the job description and be prepared to tell stories of when you completed the tasks.


And then reference those stories when it comes up in this section.

So, when they ask you, how would you handle an angry customer? Instead of giving them sone hypothetical answer,? Tell them a story of how you calmed down an angry customer in real life.

Trust me.

They love it.

When you do this.

It's one of my secrets of getting my students, lots of sweet offers.

I will link a video on how you can do this, how you can build your own story toolbox and do this for every interview.

Blow them.


I will link that in the description.

Then after the interview.

Take your phone, spike it down on the ground, like you, just scored a touchdown.

Go out and grab some ice cream, because I am so proud of you that you brought your best self to the game.

Okay, but yeah, then come back to your computer and within 24 hours, make sure you send a fricking.

Thank you, email to that interviewer., Why? Because! Remember what I said, companies want.

People who want them.

They will, like you more and perceive you as being more interested and passionate.

If you send a thank you, email.

I will link a video of how to write a killa.

Thank you, email in the description and in the comments.

Also, make sure you follow up every five business days to hear about next steps.

Persistence gets jobs.

Do this, I will link a free download in the description and in the comments of follow up email templates for you to send to the company.

I've already written them for you.

Send them their way.

You're, getting two free downloads in this video.

What, a treat! Make sure you like this video and subscribe to this channel.


So much everyone., Wi-Fi high five!.


Phone Interview Questions and Answers Examples - How to Prepare for Phone Interviews? ›

To make sure you sound professional when answering the phone for your interview, start out by stating your name in an upbeat tone, and when the interviewer states who they are, confirm that you were anticipating their call. This way, the interviewer will know who you are and that they reached the correct individual.

How do I prepare for a phone interview? ›

When you're on the call you should:
  1. be polite and professional.
  2. tell the interviewer if the line is bad or you cannot hear.
  3. try to sound engaged and interested.
  4. be clear and confident.
  5. leave a small gap at the end of each question before answering, to avoid talking over the interviewer.

What are the four 4 tips on how to prepare for a phone interview? ›

During the phone interview, you'll need to sound as professional as you would if you were meeting the interviewer face to face:
  1. Don't chew gum or eat while you're on the phone.
  2. Have a glass of water close by, in case you need a sip or two during the conversation.
  3. Standing up is an option to consider. ...
  4. Be sure to smile.

What questions will they ask in a phone interview? ›

Phone interview questions with example answers
  • Tell me about yourself/Tell me about your background.
  • Describe yourself.
  • Why are you applying for this position?
  • Why do you want this job?
  • Tell me what you know about the role.
  • Why do you want to work here?
  • Why are you looking for jobs?
  • What are you passionate about?
Mar 16, 2023

What is the first thing you say in a phone interview? ›

To make sure you sound professional when answering the phone for your interview, start out by stating your name in an upbeat tone, and when the interviewer states who they are, confirm that you were anticipating their call. This way, the interviewer will know who you are and that they reached the correct individual.

How do I impress my first phone interview? ›

To ensure you are first in line for an in-person interview, here are 5 things you should emphasize during every phone interview.
  1. Your voice is all you have… ...
  2. Know the basics about the company and interviewer(s) ...
  3. Speak articulately about your skill set and work experience. ...
  4. Ask intelligent questions.

How do you make a good first impression on a phone interview? ›

Phone Interview Tips- For an Effective First Impression
  1. Be Prepared, Minimize Distractions. ...
  2. Avoid Using Cell Phones. ...
  3. Good Communication is Critical. ...
  4. Demonstrate Enthusiasm & Liveliness. ...
  5. Prepare Responses & Questions to ask in a typical phone interview:
  6. Questions-
  7. Be a Good Listener. ...
  8. Close the Interview.

What are the 3 C's of interviewing? ›

When it comes to interviewing, confidence, competence, and credibility are essential tools for success and often elude even the most experienced investigators.

What are the 5 C's of interviewing? ›

Here are five things to think about - the five Cs of successful interviewing:
  • CV reading. Reading the CV before the interview sets you up to make a great hiring decision. ...
  • 2. Criteria. It's very important to remind yourself of the key criteria for the role. ...
  • Competencies. Consider the competencies. ...
  • Consult. ...
  • Company image.
Jan 4, 2022

How do I nail my phone interview? ›

22 Phone Interview Tips to Help You Nail the Call (and Move to the Next Round)
  1. Get Clear on the Details.
  2. Do Your Research.
  3. Practice Your Answers (and Talking on the Phone)
  4. Prepare Your Salary Number.
  5. Create a Cheat Sheet.
  6. Print Out Other Relevant Documents.
  7. Gather Your Tools.
  8. Dress the Part.

What should you avoid during a phone interview? ›

10 telephone interview mistakes to avoid
  • Not being prepared. ...
  • Not rising to the occasion. ...
  • Not verbalising. ...
  • Not being confident. ...
  • Not using a landline. ...
  • Not listening to the interviewer. ...
  • Not knowing when to keep quiet. ...
  • Not having notes to hand.

What is a good weakness to say in an interview? ›

For instance, you could say something like, “I hold myself to very high standards and sometimes put too much pressure on myself. I've learned to recognize when I'm starting to do this, such as spending a little too much time on bigger projects like quarterly reports, and I'm usually able to keep myself in check.”

How do you end a phone interview? ›

Always conclude an interview with your sincere thanks for the candidate's time. Though the conversation may have revealed that the applicant was clearly not a fit for the role, you want them to walk out of the interview feeling like they were respected and their participation was appreciated.

What is an example of tell me about yourself? ›

My strengths are I am a self-motivating person and a quick learner and m weakness is my kindness. My short-term goal is to get into a reputed company and my long-term goal is to have my own house and provide my family with all happiness. That's all about me, Thank you so much.

How do you respond to why should I hire you? ›

The first thing you should do when answering “why should we hire you?” is to highlight any skills and professional experience that are relevant to the position you're applying for. To make your answer all the more valid, make sure to always back up everything you say with examples, experiences, and achievements.

What do you say in Tell me about yourself? ›

Your answer to the "tell me about yourself" question should describe your current situation, your past job experience, the reason you're a good fit for the role, and how you align with the company values. Tell the interviewer about your current position and a recent big accomplishment or positive feedback you received.

How do you show confidence in a phone interview? ›

5 Ways to Look Confident in an Interview (Even When You're Freaking Out)
  1. Just Breathe. While waiting to be greeted by your interviewer, take a few moments to do some breathing. ...
  2. Don't Fidget. ...
  3. Make Eye Contact. ...
  4. Press Pause. ...
  5. Think Positively.

How do I sell myself in a phone interview? ›

When you're talking about yourself and your experience, keep the following six points in mind.
  1. Be the Solution. ...
  2. Be Specific. ...
  3. Prepare Sound Bites. ...
  4. Prepare to Talk About Your Resume. ...
  5. Be Aware of Nonverbal Communication. ...
  6. Be Positive.

What do recruiters look for in a phone interview? ›

The recruiter will ask you about your background, skills and experience to see if it's well-aligned with the open position. They may also be screening to see if you would be a good culture fit for the company. If all goes well, the recruiter will move you onto the next stage.

Why should we hire you? ›

“I should be hired for this role because of my relevant skills, experience, and passion for the industry. I've researched the company and can add value to its growth. My positive attitude, work ethics, and long-term goals align with the job requirements, making me a committed and valuable asset to the company.”

How do you describe yourself in a phone interview? ›

How to Answer Interview Question “How Would You Describe Yourself?”
  1. Exhibit Your Skills and Abilities Clearly. ...
  2. Summarize Yourself in a Few Meaningful Words. ...
  3. Present Yourself as a Self-motivated Person. ...
  4. Emphasize Your Expertise with Results or Numbers. ...
  5. Present Yourself With Conviction. ...
  6. Use Examples From Past Jobs or Education.
Mar 28, 2023

How long should first phone interview be? ›

Phone interviews typically last anywhere from 15 to 30 minutes, so you need to make sure that you are fully prepared and ready to take on the interview.

What is the 80 20 rule in interviewing? ›

As a rule of thumb, it is recommended that you spend just 20% of your preparation time researching the company in question, and 80% of your time focusing on yourself and your relevant skills and experience.

What are the 4 pillars of interview? ›

The system in '4 Interview Pillars' is a proven Four step by step system; The 4 Interview Pillars represent mastering TIMING, TONE, CONTENT, and CONTROL as part of the interview process.

What are the three 3 most important keys to success in interviews? ›

Employers rate showing enthusiasm (for the job, company, industry) and making eye contact as the most important keys to success at interviews. Since interviews are a conversation between the potential employee and the employer, speaking clearly (and loud enough) is also vital.

What are the six P's of an interview? ›

Landing an interview doesn't mean landing the job, because selling your skills and abilities depends on you: Prepare, Practice, Presentation, Powerful Interview, Post-Interview, and Ponder the Position are the six Ps that ensure the best possible outcome for you and the interviewer.

What are the five interview personality types? ›

The Big Five personality test evaluates five core personality traits: openness, conscientiousness, extraversion, agreeableness, and neuroticism.

What are 6 common interview questions? ›

Answering Six Common Interview Questions
  1. Tell me about yourself. This is often the opening question in an interview. ...
  2. Why should we recruit you? ...
  3. Why do you want to work here? ...
  4. What are your weaknesses? ...
  5. What did you dislike about your last job? ...
  6. Where do you see yourself in five years?

How do you ace a short phone interview? ›

  1. Be confident and bring the energy!
  2. Be conscious of time.
  3. Don't over-complicate your answers.
  4. Use valuable resources during the interview.
  5. Get comfortable talking about your previous work experiences.
  6. Close out the screening interview by asking intelligent questions.
  7. Follow-up quickly and appropriately.
Mar 16, 2023

What are common interview mistakes? ›

Top 5 job interview mistakes
  • Being unprepared.
  • Dressing inappropriately.
  • Talking too much or not enough.
  • Criticising previous employers or colleagues.
  • Failing to ask questions.
  • How to succeed at interview.

How do I overcome anxiety during a phone interview? ›

  1. Do your research. A lot of the anxiety surrounding interviews is based on not knowing what to expect. ...
  2. Practice makes perfect. ...
  3. Know the way. ...
  4. Know who you're meeting. ...
  5. Sort your outfit. ...
  6. Rationalise your fears. ...
  7. Inject some perspective. ...
  8. Embrace positive self-talk.

Should you use notes during a phone interview? ›

It is 100 percent acceptable to bring notes to a job interview if those notes contain a list of questions you've prepared in advance to ask your interviewers. In fact, bringing this type of information to an interview demonstrates to the recruiter your genuine interest in the job opportunity.

Is it OK to admit you are nervous at an interview? ›

Lastly, if you start feeling nervous during the interview remember that it's ok to admit it. During the beginning of the interview or if you start to stumble on a question, it's ok to say something like, “I apologize, I'm extremely nervous.

What is your strongest weakness answer? ›

Answer “what is your greatest weakness” by choosing a skill that is not essential to the job you're applying to and by stressing exactly how you're practically addressing your weakness. Some skills that you can use as weaknesses include impatience, multitasking, self-criticism, and procrastination.

What to expect from a 15 minute phone interview? ›

The idea of the 15-min phone interview is simple. You're only asking them a few short questions and the key things you're looking for are: Can they stick to the time they've been given? Can they convey their point concisely and explicitly?

What way should you not say thank you for the interview? ›

Don't write a note saying you're qualified unless you can back it up with some specifics. Ideally, the specifics should come directly from the interview. For example, perhaps the interviewer asked about how you perform on a team, and you gave a great answer.

What do you say after an interview phone call? ›

Here is the basic information you will want to give during your call:
  • State your full name.
  • Reference the job you interviewed for.
  • Mention the day you interviewed.
  • Offer a thank you.
  • Invite the person to call you back for further questions.
  • Leave your phone number.
Jun 9, 2023

Is a 15 minute phone interview bad? ›

15 minutes is enough time for you to give a high-level overview of the role and the company to the candidate. This is valuable if and when they come in for an in-person interview. I've done phone interviews in many formats over the last 12 years of my HR career.

How long does it take to prepare for a phone interview? ›

On average, it takes about five to 10 hours to properly prepare for an interview. This amount of time is often enough to review your resume, research the company and hiring manager, and practice basic interview questions and answers .

How do I prepare for a last minute phone interview? ›

Last-Minute Job Interview Tips
  1. Go Through Your Resume Again. Your interviewer will use your resume as a jumping-off point for your interview. ...
  2. Practice, Practice, Practice. ...
  3. Dress For Success. ...
  4. Arrive Early. ...
  5. Be Positive. ...
  6. Listen. ...
  7. Ask Thoughtful Questions. ...
  8. Be Prepared To Talk About Your Weaknesses.
Feb 16, 2023

How to fail a phone interview? ›

10 Ways to Fail a Phone Interview
  1. Don't take it seriously. ...
  2. Don't do your homework. ...
  3. Don't prepare any questions. ...
  4. Take the call in a loud area full of distractions. ...
  5. Start the call with low battery and signal. ...
  6. Lay down on the couch while you are on the call. ...
  7. Speak in a monotone voice. ...
  8. Ramble on about topics.
Aug 21, 2015

How can I tell if a phone interview went well? ›

14 signs your phone interview went well
  1. They said they want to speak again. ...
  2. It was a long interview. ...
  3. You asked good questions. ...
  4. The interviewer asked about your availability. ...
  5. They said you seem like you're a good fit. ...
  6. The interviewer asked if you have other job offers. ...
  7. The interviewer asked about your salary expectations.
Jun 9, 2023

How do you show enthusiasm in a phone interview? ›

4 Ways To Show Enthusiasm in an Interview
  1. Make sure you do your research. The first step is to make sure that you have done your research on the company and the role. ...
  2. Be positive. In an interview, it is important to be positive. ...
  3. Think about your body language. ...
  4. Use enthusiastic language.
Jul 24, 2022

What do you say at the end of a phone interview? ›

Here are some common conclusions:
  • "I am grateful for interviewing with you today. You have given me a clear overview of the position. ...
  • "Thank you for making time to interview me for the open role. I am thrilled about the prospect of working in this position and being a part of a highly reputable team."
Mar 10, 2023

How can I impress a recruiter in a phone interview? ›

Here are four ways to rock the screening call with a recruiter.
  1. Demonstrate Quickly That You Cover the Basics. ...
  2. Show That You're Truly Interested (Assuming You Are) ...
  3. Exude an Air of “Strong Culture Fit” ...
  4. Understand the Recruiter's Role and Stake in This Process.

Should you memorize interview answers? ›

Myth #1: Memorize your answers to interview questions

First of all, memorized responses usually sound stiff and rehearsed. Don't let a script stand in the way of building rapport and letting your personality shine through. It's also important to realize that you can't prepare for every possible question.

How long should phone interview answers be? ›

Interview answers should be 30 seconds to four minutes, depending on the context of the questions. Your response may be short (30 seconds to two minutes) if the question is simple. For example, if the hiring manager asks you to describe your strengths, you might speak for 90 seconds to explain where you're proficient.

What time is best for phone interview? ›

Aim for between 10am and 11am. The pre- or post-lunch slots may mean a distracted or lethargic hiring manager. Play it safe with afternoon interviews between 2pm and 4pm. If the employer's working day ends at 5pm and the interviewer has evening activities planned, their attention will be elsewhere after 4pm.

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