Answered by Dana, Hiring Expert at ManpowerGroup, on Thursday, December 4, 2014
I have interviewed candidates in the past with a similar concern, and I think there are a couple of things you can do to help your chances of being perceived as interested, enthusiastic, and engaged. I agree with the previous respondent that it’s always a good idea to ask the recruiter or hiring manager if they can hear you clearly, and to make sure you only take these calls in a peaceful, uninterrupted environment with absolutely no background noise.
I would also make a conscious effort to smile on the phone, and to maybe speak more loudly than usual. It feels a little bizarre at first, because they can’t obviously see you smiling, but when you physically smile as you’re speaking it can change the tone of your voice ever so slightly, and the other person may notice a genuine difference. It’s a secret most customer service experts know about, and many recruiters smile on the phone, too.
I have also heard of candidates briefly jumping up and down before a call, waving their arms around, or doing some silly vocal exercises to bring excitement and energy into their voice before beginning an interview. Again, it sounds sort of odd, but I have heard from candidates that this kind of activity can help! You may find other examples online.
If you start to notice that the interviewer’s interest is waning, or they seem to doubt your level of commitment to the application process, I would try to keep things relaxed and positive. Strive to be personable, responsive, and cheerful. Tell them how much you appreciate the chance to have this conversation, and express how much you look forward to next steps in the process!