The Interview

Interview Conduct

Interview conduct:
Things to remember

Telephone interviews

This is the most important aspect of this form of interview is Tone of Voice. The detail is of very little importance – the manager has your CV, so they know exactly what you’ve done, and in all probability wouldn’t be talking to you if they weren’t essentially interested.

The main rules are:

  • Think about how you normally answer the phone at home. When you answer the phone, do so by announcing your name, in an enthusiastic style
  • Sound interesting/interested, energetic and enthusiastic
  • Vary your tone and pitch a little. Remember that your voice needs to make up for lack of body language!
  • Be succinct (don’t waffle)
  • Ask open-ended questions (beginning with who, what, when, why, where, how: these all ask for information, and keep the ball in the other person’s court). Be prepared that they will do exactly the same!
  • Don’t use jargon
  • Know who you are speaking with: Use the other person’s name regularly throughout the conversation (but not all the time). Also, use the company name a few times. Don’t get their name wrong.
  • Ask “What else would you like to know?” (An ideal opportunity to ‘close’ – see below)
  • Closing the telephone interview

Part of the purpose of the telephone interview (from the hiring manager’s perspective) is to find out how keen your level of enthusiasm for the role and whether you have natural closing ability (particularly for roles with elements of negotiation).
As soon as it seems appropriate during the conversation, ask for a date to meet for a face-to-face interview. Say something like ‘Well, this certainly sounds like just the job I’m looking for Mr. Brown. I’m sure I can contribute a lot to your company. I’d really like an opportunity to meet with you face to face and further explore this opportunity”.

You may have to be content with the response ‘I’ll contact AXESS, but at least you can ask ‘When am I likely to hear from you?’
Please telephone your AXESS Account Manager immediately to let them know the outcome. They should be able to find out the answers to the other questions, on your behalf.


Face to face interviews/ Assessment centres

On arrival

  • Arrive in good time. If you are very early stay in the car or find a convenient cafe nearby
  • Ask to use the toilet for the final time. Check yourself in the mirror to ensure you are presentable.
  • Offer a firm handshake
  • Maintain good eye contact
  • If offered where to sit, choose the seat that means you would not get any background distraction such as people walking past the door
  • Sit upright, no slouching.
  • If offered a drink, take it. Having a sip of drink gives you thinking time when asked a question. Don’t do it too often or you will run out when you might need to use this tip late on in the interview.
  • Remember the tone of voice tips for the telephone interview section above. It applies here as well.



  • Number one: “Read the brief. Understand the brief. Stick to the brief”. The main reason for someone failing an interview is not adhering to this simple rule. Always request clarity if you are unsure of what’s required.
  • Ensure everyone in the room can see you and the slides (if using them).
  • Less is more with slide content. Don’t over complicate them. The focus should predominantly be on you. Imagine the slides are the bones of the discussion and you are adding the meat to them.
  • Keep track of time. Practice your presentation to see how long it runs for.
  • Do not rush: relax. Nerves sometimes cause this resulting in you finishing the presentation too quickly and missing important points.
  • Allow questions to be asked during the presentation to stimulate debate.
  • Have a strong finishing statement


Role plays

  • As with presentations, “Read the brief. Understand the brief. Stick to the brief”
  • Conduct yourself as is a proper meeting. Shake hands, introduce yourself, and outline the agenda.
  • Ask open questions to gain information from which you can provide solutions.
  • Get into character as much as possible. If the person you are dealing with is role playing as a clinician, treat them as such.
  • Close the meeting and by discussing next steps. Understand what the outcome requirement of the role play is work towards it.