Recipe for success in interviews

Some of us come through it with flying coloursIt is an experience, which some of you may walk through smoothly and for others it could be something that could be very daunting and sometimes even boring. Whatever category you fall under, good planning and preparation can substantially improve your ability to participate successfully in an interview process.

Research indicate that interviewers tend to decide in the first five minutes whether to accept or reject a candidate and the rest of the interview is merely a search for evidence to support that decision. One might ponder how are these impressions formed and why are some candidates able to consistently succeed at interviews while others fail? Well, a lot of factors contribute in making one sail through an interview process smoothly. According to Manoj Pachisia, CEO, National Institute for Excellence in Teleworking (NEXT), a leading recruitment management service company that offers training in soft skills, communication and personality development. “Companies these days look at communication skills and experience more than academic credentials. Qualifications do matter for positions that require domain expertise such as financial transaction processing, technical support etc”.

Even subtle factors such as body language, tone of voice, eye contact, enthusiasm the candidate projects, verbal skills and facial expressions matter in an interview process. Says Manoj,“ There is a lot of preparation a candidate requires to undertake before attending an interview. The candidate needs to do some research on the web or get information from friends on what the company does, remember figures like turnover, employee strength in order to convince the interviewer his or her interest in the job ”.

Experts recommend that it is a good idea to know your strengths and weaknesses and find ways to de-emphasize them and turn them into positives. First impressions talk a lot about you therefore before you go to the interview make sure you are dressed appropriately. Also take some time answering a few anticipated questions and preparing appropriate answers.

Advises Manoj, “Be prepared to answer questions on why you want the job and what you think you could bring to the post. Use examples drawn from any aspect of your life but make them as relevant to the needs of the job as you can. When asked to name your strengths and weaknesses, mention a strength that is particularly useful for the job in question. Likewise, don’t be afraid to admit a weakness as everyone has them. It is recommended you choose that particular weakness which you are aware of and volunteer information on how you have dealt with it in practice. For example if you are a person who is by nature a perfectionist, you would have required to learn the advantages of letting other people do things in their own way and during this process you would have realized the virtue of tolerance and become better at delegating work. This way you can try and turn a weakness into a learning experience and ultimately project it as your strength”.

Some of frequently asked questions in an interview are Tell us about yourself? Why do you want to join us? What did you like and dislike about your last job?  What do you see yourself doing five years from now? How well do you work under pressure? Says Manoj, “ Rehearse answers in front of a mirror or to a supportive friend whose role is less to act as an interviewer and can let you hear your own answers spoken out aloud in preparation for the real interview.”

So the next time you receive a call for an interview, be prepared well in advance and be positive. Remember facing an interview successfully is the first turning point in making your dream job into a reality.

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