Interview Cracking Skills - Pre-Interview preparation
While discussing Interview skill, we will divide this in three sections:
ii. During Interview
(we will discuss these three in three articles, the first one is Pre - Interview)
After doing a proper job search, when you got a call for interview, you need to do following preparations before facing interview:
To know about the company, visit their website or search on Google or any other search engine and understand the following:
- Vision and mission of company
- Top management and key persons
- Recent milestones of company
- About company business
- Competitors of the company
- News about your department like finance / marketing etc.
- Basic numbers related to your department like Turnover, PAT, no. of showrooms, no. of dealers etc.
If you know more about the company, then you have more chances of selection.
Read the job description thoroughly and carefully. Make points to justify how you would be able to meet the company requirements. If you have some past experience related with any duty, mention that.
Pick up your main subject books or notes and give a re-visit to the fundamentals to have better subject knowledge. Don’t try to read all the books in detail. Just go through the main fundamentals and things related with your subject.
An interviewer’s job is to find a suitable candidate for the position and to do this; he will try to test every aspect of you. For this, he will ask you many questions about yourself, your past jobs, your current job, your skills, your likes and dislikes in the current job etc. Some of them might be tricky and some might be very open - giving you a chance to show your strengths. You need to be very smart and alert to win the game.
Refer to the next chapter in which specifically 15 frequently asked question in interview are given with suggested answers. By going through those answers, you can understand the concept to prepare your answers. Don’t try to cram the answers but pick the concept and learn the art.
Sometimes, interviewer may ask questions related with current affairs going on, to check your awareness about your surroundings. So keep yourself updated about current affairs which are hot at that moment.
By current affairs here means things related to your profession not the news about theft, murder, cricket, film industry or other unrelated media coverages.
Freshers specifically require to practice speaking during the interview and need to focus on grammatical errors, pronunciations and tone of their voice. It would be better if you practice in front of some of your relatives or friends and let them criticise you. Also we would recommend you to present yourself in front of a mirror, and improve where you get stuck up. You can build your confidence this way.
g. Be organised
Don’t keep your papers in a haphazard fashion. Arrange all the documents properly. Use a good executive file and make sure that all documents mentioned below are kept:
- Cover Letter and Resume
- Educational & Professional certificates
- Experience and Training certificates
- Any presentation or write up
- Note pad, pencil, pen and calculator
- Any slide, presentation, research papers etc. in pen drive (USB)
- Most importantly, focus on essentials, like flight tickets etc.
Keep at least three to five copies of each document so that you can share these with interviewers, if asked.
Preferably you should keep the above documents in two different folders;
-One of them should have only your cover letter, resume, professional qualification certificates and salary slip.
-The rest in another folder.
During an interview, you may need to narrate your past experiences. So make a pointer of your experiences, practical examples, and special attributes & qualities.
By doing so, you won’t miss important practical examples and won’t be confused by the questions are being asked by interviewer.
If you are going outstation for interview, don’t forget to take two or three extra dresses for unexpected climate and weather. Don’t forget to check the temperature of the interview station. Pack your clothes accordingly.
Don’t forget to pack the necessary documents like ID cards, tickets, credit / debit cards, Interview call letter etc.
To avoid last minute panic, book your trains / flight / hotel earlier such that you reach at least 24 hours before the interview time.
Keep a list of three to four references ready who can provide endorsement for your work. Keep following details of these references:
- Name & designation
- Department or division
- Telephone / Mobile and Email Id
- Your relationship / connection with them
Some companies use video / telephonic interview through Skype, Zoom, Google meet, JioMeet etc. And COVID-19 outbreak has forced many more companies to choose this mode. So you should equip yourself for these types of interviews also. Take care of the following to get through the telephonic/ video interview:
- Keep your device properly charged and sort out the connectivity issues before starting.
- Learn and test audio and video apps like Zoom or Google meet etc. prior to the meeting.
- Test your microphone and your own voice tone.
- Keep your device in an isolated room so that family conversations don’t disturb your interaction quality.
- Keep a soft copy of your resume and other credentials on that device in case they are required
- Listen first and wait for your turn to speak.
- Keep your microphone off while panel is speaking so that your breathing voice does not disturb the call clarity.
- Sit in a room with proper lighting and which is properly arranged.
- Avoid eating or chewing during call.
- Keep a water bottle near you.
Last but never the least, till now you have worked on your knowledge, your documents etc. But don’t forget to do a little work on yourself also. After all, personality does matter in the interview. Looking good will make you feel good.
So shave properly, get a good haircut, clean your nails and a light facial too will work.
Boys should specifically avoid wearing extraordinary ornaments like rings and bracelets etc. Newly married girls should avoid heavy dresses, makeup and ornaments which they wear regularly otherwise.
The purpose of above exercise is that instead of cramming for a specific interview, you prepare yourself for this interview in full and also be more than 75% ready for future interviews.
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