Saturday, November 28, 2009

Using humor during phone interview

Abby writes:
I have a phone interview scheduled for a tenured teaching position with a private college. My husband has advised me against using humor during my interview. He said, "You are funny. I think you are funny, all of your friends think you are funny, but don't be funny during this interview." But funny is who I am. I want to show the interviewer I have a personality. Wouldn’t humor make me more memorable? What do you think?

I agree with your husband on this one; save the humor for the face to face interview or better yet 'til after you are hired. There is such a large margin for misinterpretation of humor; I wouldn’t take the risk. Not everyone has a sense of humor. Plus, because it is a phone interview you will miss any visual cues indicating your interviewer did not realize you were joking. A phone interview is serious business especially in the current job market where there are more qualified candidates than positions available. The purpose of your phone interview should be to get an in-person interview; focus on promoting your job qualifications and teaching ability not your sense of humor.

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