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Interview Your Voice Mail

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So you are well-qualified, you submitted a killer resume and you nailed the interview.  The recruiter was very enthusiastic and said they will contact the successful candidate in the next week.  Looks like you are home free, you can see nothing in way of you and an awesome job offer, except for your voice mail.

In today’s post, I am going to cover a very important yet often over-looked item in your job search – your voice mail.

Earlier in my HR career, I hired for entry level management professional positions.  When recruiting for junior level or entry level jobs, we weren’t looking for experience.  Instead, we were looking for bright young candidates who would bring fresh ideas – you know, some “new blood”.  I couldn’t tell you how many times, I contacted a potential candidate only to be greeted by an unprofessional voice mail.  Some of my favourites included:

“It’s John, you know what to do”

“Sup it’s Dave, leave a message” (with the gangster rap music playing in the back)

“Hello, it’s Chantelle, leave me message, later!”

Or my personal all time fav:

“Hello you have reached Tom, I am currently unable to take your call.  Please leave a message and I will respond as soon as I can.” (*insert toilet flush)

Messages like the ones above, are not professional and do not create a favourable impression with potential employers.  Employers need to trust that if they leave you to a client, assignment or otherwise that it will be left in capable hands.  So if you are looking for work, ask yourself, “Does my voice mail sounds professional?”.  The logic is simple, if you want an employer to see you as a professional you must present yourself as a professional, and this includes a professional sounding voice mail.

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