Video Call Voyages 1: The Virtual Job Interview that Freaked Me Out

Posted By
Adam Grant

Before joining Banty, I was an anxious, nervous wreck when it came to setting up and participating in video calls. The Video Call Voyages series of blog posts will reflect on my pre-Banty video chat experiences and what I learned from them.


When I was first introduced to virtual meetings, I couldn’t help but initially fear the undertaking I would eventually have to embark on. As someone who for the longest time did not need said technology for professional purposes, my understanding of it was pretty basic – if not totally non-existent.

If memory serves me correctly, the first video call I was invited to was for a job interview. I was immediately hesitant and slightly terrified. Job interviews are stressful enough, so learning that this one now had to take place through an online meeting platform added further angst to the occasion

Since I didn’t want to look like a dummy before the online meeting officially began, I performed an inordinate amount of research on video chat apps and how to participate in video conferences. I probably spent more time educating myself about these two things, than the company I was interviewing with.

I did most of my research using Google, before filling in the blanks by incessantly asking the video chat experts in my life question, after question, after question.

The morning of the job interview was nerve-wracking and busy. Because my home office looked like a disaster, I spent much time tracking down the spot in my house that had the best Internet connectivity and lighting. Then, I checked, and re-checked my audio settings. From there, I thoroughly studied the virtual meeting invite to see that I understood the process of logging into it.

As the clock moved closer to go-time, I took a few minutes to ignore my fear of logging in for a live video chat online. I used this tech breather to focus on how I’d answer the questions I expected to be asked. If I was going to put in all that time learning about video conferencing solutions for business, I was at least going to have a quality interview experience as well.

At the moment of truth, I followed the virtual meeting invite directions to the letter. I was in! My lighting was superb. My audio was where it needed to be. My Internet connection was excellent. It was time to get on the video call and shine.

Right away, there was an issue. But, to my surprise, it wasn’t on my end. 

The interviewer – without any prior warning – opted to conduct our virtual meeting without video on their end. Instead, I was watching a video feed without a human in it, and hearing a voice tell me it’s okay for me to exit video mode as well.

As much as that wrench threw me for a small loop during the early stages of this online meeting, it also helped me realize one important thing really quickly: virtual meetings are only as stressful as you make them out to be. 

Here I was – for days leading into this job interview – stressed out about how well I could learn the technology, harness it, and manage it during a live video chat online. All of this dominated my interview preparation. The fact that I could still remember anything about the position I was on a video call for, was a minor miracle. 

When my virtual meeting began, I was tasked with pivoting immediately. I never researched how to switch off my video mode if that was required. I had to learn this on the fly and avoid awkwardly falling on my face. I was forced to find calmness and realize video conferences are easy – you just have to trust yourself and the technology.

Banty offers a number of virtual meeting solutions for business and personal use. 

Tap here to learn more about them, as well as our 14-day free trial period for all new users.

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Adam Grant

Adam has been a professional, published writer for more than 20 years. He has experience writing about technology, business, music, news, as well as many topics in-between. When not banging away at the keyboard, Adam spins vinyl, obsesses over sports, and takes his dog on giant walks.