Unfortunately enough, life, as we know it, has been flipped upside down, due to our recent pandemic of COVID-19. I’m sure I can speak for everyone in saying that it’s been a difficult transition, working from home, virtual learning for all grade levels, canceled graduations, and the lack of a social life anymore. However, for some of us, the reality still remains that in just 6 weeks we’ll be embarking on a new journey or a new career. And while we normally look forward to interviewing for a new position, COVID-19 has forced virtual interviews to become the new normal. This week I was able to experience my first video interview of my Nursing career, and while it had its glitches I found it to be quite efficient. I thought I’d share my experience with you all, as you may be preparing for the video interview of a lifetime. Keep reading to find out more!
As I said, this was my first video interview and when I say I was nervous; I WAS NERVOUS. It wasn’t the normal nerves that you get when you go for an in-person interview though, but rather so many silly things that I never thought would bother me. Like I know that my computer is fully charged and I still have it connected to the power source, but what if it goes dead in the middle of my interview? Is my white wall white enough? What if it looks a little dirty from their end? Does my bun fit in the camera all the way? Or do my boobs look big in the camera? Lol, when I say so many things were going through my head I couldn’t even focus straight. However, I found comfort in knowing that although I was dressed for an interview and I was patiently waiting for the manager to greet me, I was in the comforts of my home. It was a comfortable environment for me, and I was in my element.
Now to the part that I’m sure you’re all wondering about, “how did I prepare for the interview and how was it conducted?” To prepare for the interview, I filled out a series of questions that one of my instructors provided for our class to prepare (which I’ll include a link to below) I went through them about 3-4 times prior to the interview date, just to be comfortable. As a cheat (don’t tell anyone) I did have the document up on my computer during the interview as a guide; however, I didn’t actually use the sheet.
Interviews are really all about selling yourself (but not too much) to the employers, being able to identify your weakness, and presenting ways that you can help to enhance the company! Another great way to prepare is to write down a list of questions that you want to ask during or at the end of the interview. Always come with questions because it shows that you have a genuine interest in the company. So for me, I wanted to know the nurse-to-patient ratio, how they defined variable shifts, nurse residency programs, and values on continuing education. Most importantly, dress to impress! In order to put me in the mindset to have a great interview, I made sure that I looked up to par from head to toe. I have this weird theory that one day someone’s going to ask to see my full outfit, and that’ll be the day that I have sweatpants on lol. So just to be on the safe side, just to impress, but not too much.
So as far as the day of my interview: My recruiter sent me an e-mail that included all of the information I would need for the interview about a week prior. I still made sure that I logged on about 5-10 minutes before my start time, just to test the microphone, camera, and my internet connection. The manager logged on at our scheduled start time, and to my advantage, the software was unfortunately not working so we conducted it via audio (Praise the Lord!) The interview lasted about 45 minutes to an hour and I felt great afterward! I exited out of the browser feeling like I had that interview in the bag, and no one could tell me otherwise!
If there’s anything that I want you to take away from this it’s to not let the fear of having to adjust to the new norms overshadow your ability to let your personality shine! Be yourself, no one knows you better than yourself. You are also the best critic of yourself. So while it’s important to display all of the positive things about yourself, be honest with yourself and the employer. Honesty is always the best policy! Dress to impress but not too much. For my ladies, a simple blazer and black dress with a professional bun, and little to no makeup is the easiest. Guys, suit and tie, maybe not the jacket though.
Practice, practice, practice! Never go into an interview blindsided. I can ensure you that you will freeze in the middle if you do! And lastly, remember it’s always about what you can do for the company and what you bring to the table, not the other way around.
I hope that you all have gained new knowledge on video interview etiquette and embrace this new normal that we are being faced with. Remember that the power of life and death lies in your tongue, and you can manifest the life that you want!
Stay safe everyone!