Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Lock your doors when you're having a Skype interview

If you've been hiding under a rock for a week or so, click on the video above for a very funny treat. (Here is a WSJ interview with Professor Kelly and his family.) Also, it is also worth noting that the Skype interview is growing in popularity - make sure your children, pets and other technological issues do not get in the way of making sure you put your best foot forward.

(Also, is the increase in Skype interviews of potential candidates a good thing? I think the answer is "no" - I think it puts much more emphasis on non-verbal cues from the interviewee, activates all sorts of personal prejudices and provides no more information than a phone interview. Maybe I'm wrong, but I believe Skype interviews are another way that the balance between employer and potential employee is tipped to favor the employer.) 


  1. I personally feel a that if a Skype interview is "required", it should go after a phone interview and before an on-site interview, but I do not know the norm of various industries. Having said that, I have had four on-site interviews, with none requiring Skype, thankfully.

  2. My personal view is that a Skype interview should be a better replacement for phone interview nowadays. The ability to guide the interviewers through your presentation slides on Skype is so much better than talking through it on the phone.

  3. My experience is probably not the norm, but I have severe phone anxiety (diagnosed). I think it stems from not being able to observe body language, because I don't have anxiety surrounding Skype calls. In this way, I find Skype interviews to be much more accessible than telephone interviews.

    Also related: as a trans person, I'd much rather have a potential employer take gender ques off of my appearance than off of my voice. I am much less likely to be misgendered this way.

    As I said, my experience is probably not representative, but for me personally Skype works in favor of my diverse experiences rather than against them.

  4. I love that Trump/Spicer/Kellyanne/Ben Carson spoof much better!


  6. I hate Skype interviews! First of all, I always get a lag, or my internet cuts out. One time I did a Skype interview, I tested to see that the wifi in the room was good before starting. It started cutting out right in the middle of my interview. There was no ethernet connection in the room, and in any case I have the newer Macbook which requires a special adaptor to access ethernet. But lags and internet cutting in and out is really a pretty minor worry compared to some other issues I have had.

    Another time, all the conference rooms were booked during the time my Skype interview was supposed to occur. Since I am a postdoc, I have a cubicle and not a private office. I decided to do the interview at home. BTW I live in a studio since I am a postdoc in a high COL area, so there is no door to close to keep my dog from wandering in and out being distracting. She's usually well behaved, so I decided to not worry about it. However, my neighbor's dogs started freaking out right in the middle of my Skype interview. It was incredibly distracting, and suffice to say I did not get an on site interview. It could have been for other reasons, but it definitely threw me off and was distracting on the other end.

    Since I live in a high COL area, I don't really have a private space at home where the door can be shut. At work, we have a really limited number of conference rooms considering the number of people who work here and the number of scheduled meetings. I don't know what postdocs are supposed to do--is it really reasonable that we are expected to have a private, professional looking space? A lot of us who live in high COL places live in studios or have multiple housemates. There are less variables involved in a phone interview--there are more quiet places I could go off to have a private phone conversation that maybe have dumb looking backdrops.

    If you are sharing slides, the Skype interview totally makes sense. But one time, they were just asking me typical questions about my background, my research, etc. This could have easily been done as a conference call.

  7. That could totally happen to me. I do most of my work via GoToMeeting and often at unusual hours, keeping the background noise down is always a struggle. That might be why I avoid activating my webcam, someone would see me getting the kids breakfast.

  8. I once had a skype interview with Pace University. I tested my set-up several times to make sure the mic was working. During the interview, something was wrong with the sound. They kept insisting it was my fault for not keeping my head steady in front of the mic. I remained as still as a statue. One of the faculty still insisted it was my fault but another stood up for me and said he didn't move at all. The interview continued with horrible sound. Didn't make it to the in person interview round.


looks like Blogger doesn't work with anonymous comments from Chrome browsers at the moment - works in Microsoft Edge, or from Chrome with a Blogger account - sorry! CJ 3/21/20