Something intangible gets lost over video versus meeting someone face to face and, we believe that it is all the "soft-stuff" that we automatically read when we meet people. On a video interview, you have to try extra hard with the verbal and non-verbal elements. These include:
Body language and how it is read is magnified on video, but facial expressions are the most important. Talking with a smile has never been more critical, and you need to make sure that you are both "talking to the camera" and ensuring your camera is directly in front of you and at eye height. If you plan to use a laptop or notebook, consider raising it.
Eye contact, or lack of it
Many interviewers report a lack of eye contact from candidates post video interview. You may be looking at the screen and not the camera, it is essential to compensate for this in the interview.
Seeing yourself in the corner of the screen can be quite distracting when trying to maintain eye contact, consider adding a post-it note your image, so your focus is directly on the person in front of you.
Facial and vocal expressions
There is a reason why News Readers and TV Presenters are more expressive with their facial expressions, voices and hand gestures to convey feelings or emotions on camera and the same is true for video interviews. Nodding your head more noticeably to show active listening, smiling more broadly, making greater use of hand gestures and varying the tone and emphasis of your voice all help.
A plain backdrop will ensure that the interviewer's focus is on you and not on the books in your bookshelf. We all experience "Zoom-fatigue" and having a plain backdrop will remove unnecessary distractions. Some people like to use virtual backgrounds but remember as many people love them as hate them. If you choose to use one, think about what it conveys and choose something plain.
Interviewers quickly pick-up if you are distracted during the interview. Close everything else on your computer and switch off your phone during the interview. Try and use a room where it is less likely that someone is going to walk in. Make everyone in your household aware that you will need to be undisturbed for the duration of the video interview.
Dress to impress
Think about what you would wear to a face to face interview and dress accordingly. Plain conservative colours work best. Avoid patterns, items with stripes, as they can look distorted and distracting on video. Being smartly dressed from head to toe will help put you in the right frame of mind.
The usual interview rules should not be forgotten:
Prepare for the interview by researching the company or project and be prepared to answer questions such as, what do you know about our company? What do you know about this project? What do you know about this airline?
Take time at the start of the interview to build rapport and warmth. Remember, an interviewer is more likely to remember you if you established this in the interview.
Preparing some well thought out questions is super-important. Asking questions allows you to demonstrate your knowledge of the subject and build credibility. A question framed in the right way can be used to show that you have done your research on an organisation or project. Many people lose out on opportunities because they fail to ask good questions.
At the end of the interview finish on a positive note, thanking the interviewers for their time and re-affirming your interest in the opportunity. You don't want to leave the interviewer in any doubt about how you feel. If you want this job, tell them.
Finally, a well-worded post-interview follow-up e-mail is always well received. If you haven’t connected with the interviewer on LinkedIn, do this now too.