How to ace a Job Interview
Interview Preparation

How to ace a Job Interview

Getting a call for a job interview is always exciting, especially when it is your dream company. But How do you ensure selection? This article provides you important pointers for that.

Let’s try to look inside the mind of an interviewer. Imagine that you have been assigned a task to select a candidate for a job role in your company. What would you expect from the candidate? Think about it and Write down the qualities that you would like to see in those candidates.

We talked to 30+ people from the industry and asked them to list down what they expect in a candidate. Let’s look at the following points that many interviewers have written in the order of their relevance:

Knowledge

They need to onboard someone who can become productive and contribute to the team as soon as possible. There is no substitute for the knowledge and this is definitely the most important criterion. Make sure that you are good at what you do.  It could be for any profile, but always remember that there is very little room for mediocre. Make sure that you are updated with the latest trends, happenings, and have practical knowledge.

A friendly but confident attitude

You are going to join their team and no one likes a snob. The interviewer would pay attention to small things like your tone of voice, your way of answering questions, and your way of handling failures. If he/she senses that you are not friendly, there is no way that you are going to get selected, even if you are one of the best in your domain.

Everything that you do reflects your attitude. Never ever try to show off, just try to be modest. Never start an argument with the interviewer, that simply reflects a childish attitude. If you find that your thoughts and the interviewer's thoughts are clashing, just present your opinion politely.

Always try to carry a friendly smile on your face. Sometimes the interviewer asks a very difficult question just to see how you react! Do you panic? Does the smile on your face disappear in a click? Do you start looking upwards or here and there? Or Do you try to answer calmly and accept gladly that you are not aware of the answer, but do not miss the chance to ask him the answer to the question :-) .This has happened a number of times in interviews and most of the time candidates who did not panic have emerged successful.

Sincerity and Punctuality

We all hate to work with people who are not sincere, people who take up work but do not finish on time or those who take things too lightly.  Often, the work given to you would have deadlines and those can only be met if you are sincere.

Also, never be late for an interview, no matter what happens. It leaves a really bad impression on an interviewer and he/she would have made an opinion of you even before meeting you. 

People are tired of excuses like “I was stuck in traffic”, “I was unable to find the location” etc. It simply shows that you did not anticipate these things. If you were stuck in traffic, you should have left early. If you were not able to find the location, you should have called and got the correct address and exact location.

Reach the center 10 minutes prior to the scheduled time and cross-check your documents. Anybody hates waiting, and your interviewer is not different. Particularly in the case of off-campus interviews, the interviewer is generally tired after having taken a lot of interviews and would get pissed off and reject you right away for such a small thing, no matter how qualified you are. Moreover, being late shows that you are "irresponsible".

 

A professional and clean appearance

Dress appropriately for the interview. A clean shirt and trouser/jeans is a good combination. Make sure that you looks sharp. If you do not dress properly or if you look clumsy, people would think that you are not serious about the interview and this might affect your chances of selection.

Some Important Points

Now that you know what the interviewers are expecting from you, try to inculcate all these qualities in yourself, let’s move on to interview preparation.

Here are some of the things that you should start with:

Do your Research:

A short research about the company and the questions that have been asked earlier is really helpful. Ask your seniors or your colleagues about the interview experience they had. Though it would not be the same person taking your interview, but more or less the Questions are similar because the interviewer in any company is given a list of questions that they need to ask the candidates and provide the feedback.

You must have seen a sheet that they carry where they tick and write after listening to your response. The sheet contains a list of parameters over which they have to judge you, which essentially remains constant in all the interviews!!

Practice:

Now that you know the pattern and type of questions asked in an Interview. Practice! Practicing the questions would save the mini-heart atttack that you get in an interview when a question like "Why Should I Hire You?" is asked. Prepare well for such questions so that when you are thrown such a question you are well prepared and can answer well instead of blabbering rubbish(Many Of the candidates do that! )!

Read Your Resume:

Do not just copy-paste your resume from others. You are allowed to follow the design but copying an entire resume and then just replacing his marks with yours is a strict No-No!. In some cases we have found that in a campus selection interview almost all the students have the SAME CAREER OBJECTIVE!, it clearly shows that you are either lazy or you lack originality. Such things might drag you down, and can be a prime reason for your rejection especially if the company you are appearing for is amongst: "Yahoo", "Google", "CISCO", "Microsoft", "McAfee" etc. These companies literally scrutinize your resume.

In fact, some of the times the Interviewer's first Question might be: "What is your Career Objective?", and this can send you for a toss if you are unable to reply to what is written on your resume.

You should be prepared to explain each and everything that is on your resume, be it your academic projects or your achievements.

We hope that that this article will help you a lot in your interviews. If you liked the article, please share it with your friends. Thanks !

Written by: Prajjwal Sinha

Prajjwal Sinha is an alumnus of IIM Bangalore and has 10+ years of corporate experience in companies like TCS, McAfee, Intel. He is also an Entrepreneur and has created popular apps like Amigoz, BharatScanner, GovJobAdda, Funbook etc.

He has interviewed 500+ candidates in his career and writes regularly on topics related to jobs.