A few years ago we were interviewing for a sales position. My sales manager, Jay, had been looking for the right candidate for quite a while. Since the candidate, Jay, and I were all remote we decided to do a Skype call. I wasn’t very excited about this interview but Jay was sure we had a good candidate. I agreed to sit in on the interview.
We all got connected on the Skype call. Jay started in with our standard interview questions. The way the candidate was responding made it clear to me that this wasn’t a good fit. Every time this candidate spoke I couldn’t believe what I was hearing. I put myself on mute so they couldn’t actually hear my eyes rolling!
Halfway through this call I was done. As Jay continued his futile effort, I started pacing around my office. Looking for some entertainment to distract myself from the discontent on my face, I started playing with some juggling balls. I was pacing my office, rolling my eyes, and juggling balls. Completely disengaged in the conversation.
The call ended and we all politely thanked one another for the time.
The next day Jay called me to discuss the candidate. The first thing out of Jay’s mouth was “Well, that was pretty embarrassing!” I thought, “Exactly! That candidate was terrible.” Jay continued “You know your camera was on the entire time, right?”
I WAS HORRIFIED!
While it was true that I was not into the call, my body language was downright disrespectful! It was not my intention to show such disrespect to the candidate and Jay. It was so bad.
I apologized to Jay. I called the candidate to apologize to him too.
The biggest lesson I learned is that I need to maintain professionalism in every environment. I would have never behaved that way in person and there was no excuse for me to behave like that on a call; camera off or not.