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Ztek Tips – Are Interview pauses and silences okay? Absolutely!

Ztek Tips – Are Interview pauses and silences okay? Absolutely!

There are going to be a lot of opportunities during an interview for pauses in the conversation or even flat-out, uncomfortable? silence.? Silence is ok, just be yourselfThis can be initiated by you or the interviewer, and in most cases neither is an indicator that something is amiss.? The best way to deal with these situations is to remember that it’s an opportunity for you to demonstrate qualities that employers find highly desirable, such as pragmatism, introspection, confidence, and maturity.

If and when this does happen, ask for a moment to think of an answer and during this time there is most likely going to be complete silence.? This is fine and perfectly normal.? Don’t get distracted because no one is talking.? Instead, use the time you have asked for wisely and think of the best answer or example you can give.

If the interviewer is taking notes (and most likely they are), be comfortable with the fact that there are going to be pauses in between questions as they try and write everything down. This is actually a good thing because it means they found something compelling about what you had to say and want to remember it later when they are making a decision on who to hire. Don’t feel the need to fill this space.? Let them continue writing and wait for the next question.

If you have answered a question and it is met by silence and the interviewer is not writing anything down, you may be at a loss as to what you should do.? It could signal that the interview is expecting more information or they are not satisfied with the answer. You won’t know unless you ask, “Do you want me to elaborate on that?” or “Did I answer your question fully?”? If the answer is no, just patiently wait for the next question to be asked or for additional cues as to what they might be looking for.

There are also going to be times when you have an answer in mind, however you’re not quite sure how to put it into words at the moment, particularly if the response needs to be framed in a particular way or may require more contextual detail than you feel the interviewer may be looking for at the moment.? In these cases, and only after giving it some consideration, you should acknowledge the interviewer’s question and ask if it would be acceptable to come back to the question in a moment.

Consider this your “Get out of jail free card”.? Use it once and only if necessary.? Once you decide that you need more time, be sure to confidently affirm that you would like to respond, however you would like to consider your response first. In the meantime, out of consideration for the interviewer’s time, you would like to continue as information related to the question is likely to come up again in future questions.

Don’t worry that the interviewer is not praising you on your answer to each question and continue onto the next one.? They do not want to give you an indication of how you are doing during the interview and are trained to be neutral when responding to answers.? The important thing is to act natural and be yourself.

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