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Interviewing through an Interpreter: Three Best Practices

Conducting an interview through an interpreter can add complexity to an interaction. By keeping a few guidelines in mind, you can conduct the interview with poise. We have three fundamentals for communicating through an interpreter:

1. Show the interpreter courtesy. Greet the interpreter warmly and professionally. Invite them to let you know if anything is unclear. At the end of the interview, express your gratitude for their assistance in the interaction.

2. Practice brevity. Break your communication into short segments that the interpreter can convey. You don’t want to get carried away, talk for five or ten minutes straight, and then the interpreter has to recall and relate such a large section of content.

3. Connect authentically. Your goal is to have a genuine interaction with your interviewers. Look them in the eye, rather than looking to the interpreter. Smile and be personable. Don’t allow the logistics of an interpreter to divert you from your regular pleasant presence.

How have you found success communicating through an interpreter? Share your experience with us on social media.