The Internet has been enjoying the interview between the unfortunate Professor Robert Kelly and the BBC, during which his two children entered his office. The good news is, as said by the BBC he “managed to keep his composure and complete the interview successfully.”
The nature of our work means we regularly hold interviews with people in their homes or other environments and we understand that unforeseen things can happen when candidates are speaking to us, or even their future employers. Of course, being on a global TV network is one thing, but what might people do when faced with this situation in a meeting or interview?
Our advice is to know how to mute your microphone and cut the camera before your appointment starts. If you are interrupted by a child, a well-meaning colleague, your cat or dog, the doorbell, or even a fire alarm, excuse yourself briefly and turn off your microphone and camera. Resolve the situation and then take an additional five seconds to gather yourself before turning back on the camera and microphone. Most interviewers will be very understanding—and you will also have demonstrated your calmness under pressure.