Hosted By

Isaiah Hankel
Isaiah Hankel
Chief Executive Officer Cheeky Scientist

Join Isaiah as he discusses the challenges of pre-recorded video interviews and explains how you can ace your next one

Here’s a quick rundown of this week’s episode…

  • First, Isaiah introduces PhDs to pre-recorded interviews, an emerging trend in recruiting process
  • Next, he covers what kind of questions you can expect to be asked in a pre-recorded interview
  • Finally, Isaiah breaks down some of the major hurdles PhDs face when it comes to making a good impression on a pre-recorded interview

From This Week’s Show…

PhDs Are Seeing An Uptick In The Number Of Pre-Recorded Video Interviews Employers Are Asking For

If you haven’t already encountered a pre-recorded video interview in your industry job search, just wait – you will. 

Pre-recorded video interviews are gaining in popularity, so chances are, you’re going to have to do one. 

So, start preparing now. 

If you go into this kind of video interview unprepared, even though it’s pre-recorded, it’s going to be painfully obvious. 

There Are Things You Need To Be Aware Of Before Your Next Pre-Recorded Video Interview

The most important thing to realize is that you can’t just stop and start over if you mess up. 

You only get one chance with most of these video interview software programs today. 

So you have to practice “live” before you go “live”, or at least as “live” as possible. 

Pre-recorded video interviews aren’t your average interview. 

They consist of a series of standardized questions designed to assess your skills, your personality, and your ability to fit into the company culture. 

In turn, you’re asked to answer in a video recording. 

As mentioned, you will likely have a limited time to prepare an answer, and you will likely only have one shot to get it right. 

While video interview setups may vary widely from company to company, what remains the same is how unnatural they feel. 

You’re talking to a screen instead of a human being. 

The only audio and visual feedback you have is of you.

To overcome the awkwardness of the situation, you need to practice – A LOT. 

Prepare answers to standard behavioral questions, and don’t just practice saying them out loud. 

Record yourself just as you would during the interview. 

So what questions will employers ask in these pre-recorded interviews?

The first question you’re likely to get is “Who are you?” or “Can you briefly introduce yourself?” 

This is where your well-practiced elevator pitch comes in. 

And note, again, I said well-practiced. You won’t have the time to come up with one on the fly. 

PhDs Who Rehearse Their Answers To Questions Like These Are Better Poised To Come Across As Natural And Competent

A well-crafted elevator pitch includes your name, your background, what your professional goals are, and something beyond yourself – like why you want the job you want and what larger impact you want to have by doing the job at hand.

You also want to include something personable that shows you as well-rounded.

For instance, you could say, “Hi, I’m so and so. I have a PhD in Genetics and enjoy spending time outdoors on the weekend when I have time.”

“I’m interested in a Project Management role at your company because I want to apply my expertise in cutting-edge sequencing techniques to help improve cancer diagnostics.” 

Next, you can expect a number of behavioral questions. 

Things like, “Tell me about a time you faced a challenge at work,” or “Describe one of your biggest professional accomplishments.” 

When answering behavioral questions, apply the STAR method, which is an acronym for Situation, Task, Action and Result.

Here, you want to describe a situation relevant to the question, present the problem you faced (the task), explain how you addressed the problem (the action), and end with what resulted from your actions. 

To convey your enthusiasm and ensure your answers are clear by video, you will want to speak a little louder, pronounce your words a little more clearly and pick up your energy a notch. 

Again, when communicating via screen, it’s harder to get a read on people.

So be ready to add a little “extra” on everything you say.

Make sure you pay attention to your body language and your tonality too.

** for the full podcast, check out the audio player above.

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