Kids, SHUT UP! During a Phone Interview?

Kids. Job interview. They don’t co-exist in the same space. Not job interviews. It never ends well. And it shouldn’t.

That is what happened to my client, Sharon,  a year ago in middle of a shouting match between her 7 & 12 year old girls. It was obvious to her prospective employer that her response to her children was not the transferable skill the company desired.

Sharon (not her real name) was the most mild mannered person I’ve known. We wrote and edited her resume to a lean 1 1/2 pages. We produced a cover letter that was pretty unique and compelling. She received calls for meetings within two weeks. But…

The most temperate person will blow his or her top under the worst circumstances. The person on the other end thinks, “If she can not control her kids, how will she deal with a difficult customer or coworker.”

Tell your kids to stifle before an interview, without an audience, before disqualifying yourself as a serious candidate.

I suggest the following to remind parents to master the restraint button before you have life-changing conversations of any kind:

Don’t: Threaten them, and punish them for being kids. They run, they chase, and they throw things.

Do: Prepare them by giving them toys or a temporary hiatus during the duration of the call. Explain to them the significance of the call, and the rewards when you get the job.

Don’t: Yell at children during the call. No one wants to know, or hear you yell, scream, or screech!

Do: Train them to  lower their voices when anyone is on the phone anytime.

Don’t: Be where you are visible or distracted.

Do: Be in an office with the door shut, locked, or bolted.

Don’t: Expect your small children to understand.

Do: Demonstrate patience and provide them with careful instruction.

Debatable: Don’t interview on a busy day.

Do: Have an quiet hour or two before the phone interview, and to quiet your children. If Dad is not around to help, then maybe they  will sleep while you have an uninterrupted interview over the phone.

Remember that you cannot ask an employer to hold unless it is an emergency. Some interviewers tolerate it, but most have zero patience. You have to know your children, and prepare them accordingly. Good luck. May the force be with you.

About Mark Anthony Dyson

I am the "The Voice of Job Seekers," career consultant, job seeker advocate, career writer, and founder of this award-winning blog. I help the employed, unemployed, underemployed, and under-appreciated find jobs using job search strategies to navigate the new job market. I aim to give a safe place online to those with different needs, cultures, and ethnicities to find their voice in the job market. Thousands have read my career advice throughout the web as I write about everything from job search strategies to the mobile job search. I have published more than 400 articles on this blog and some of the largest career sites such as, YouTern, and Come Recommended. I've been quoted in major publications such as on Monster, AOL Jobs, Fortune, Business Insider and Levo League. Both FlexJobs and JobMonkey listed my podcast as one of the top eight podcasts to help your job search. Love for you to sign up for the weekly newsletter. I share the latest articles I've written, new podcast episodes, and answer any questions you may have. The new job search is scary and if you need help, I am here for it!

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