Pauses and silences are okay

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Pauses and Silences are Okay. There are going to be a lot of periods during an interview when there are going to bepauses in conversation or flat out silence. This can be initiated by you or the interviewerand in most cases either is not an indicator that something is amiss.

You can ask for a moment to think of an answer and during this time there is most likelygoing to be complete silence. This is fine and perfectly normal, don’t get distractedbecause no one is talking, use the time you have asked for wisely and think of the bestanswer or example you can give.

If the interviewer is taking notes (and most likely they are), be comfortable with the factthat there is going to be pauses in between questions and they try and write everythingdown. This is actually a good thing because it means they have liked what you have tosay and want to remember it when they are later making a decision on who to hire. Don’tfeel 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 writinganything done, you may be at a loss as to what you should do. It could signal that theinterview is expecting more information or they are not satisfied with the answer. Youwon’t know unless you ask, “Do you want me to elaborate on that?.” If the answer is no,just patiently wait for the next question to be asked.

Don’t worry that the interviewer is not praising you on your answer to each question andcontinue onto the next one. They do not want to give you an indication of how you aredoing during the interview and are trained to be neutral when responding to answers, ifthe respond at all.

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