Job seekers should not take an informal approach to phone interviews, Pattie Hunt Sinacole, president of a human resources consulting firm, writes in this blog post. Just as in face-to-face interviews, candidates should do their homework and be prepared when an interviewer calls, remembering to ask about next steps, and follow up with a thank-you note, she writes. Also, they should be sure to minimize distractions. "Crate your dog, turn off the radio and, if in your car, pull over to a quiet spot so you are able to talk in a focused way," Sinacole advises.

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