June 28, 2008

Interviews : Do’s and Don’ts

A successful job interview is an important step towards fulfillment of a candidate’s aspirations and ambitions.

The main objective of any candidate is to convince the interviewer that he/ she can successfully do the job and become a desirable part of the organization.

Common guidelines for the candidate / aspirant –

Preparing well for the interview.
Dressing professionally.
Arriving early.
Being prepared to ask at least two questions.
Knowing exactly what you want to do.
Knowing about the organization and the field in which it operates, how the organization is structured, its major activities, and its plans for the future.
Knowing specifically what you have to do for the organization.

Commonly asked Questions –

Tell me about yourself.
What are your long-term (10 years from hence) / short-term (5 years from hence) goals?
What are your strongest/weakest personal qualities?
Why do you think you would be successful / suitable for this job?
Why do you want to work for us?
Why should we hire you?
What positions have you held in the past?
Do you prefer working alone or in teams?

Behavioral Interviews –

Interviewers a lot of times expect specific examples of situations when you were faced with different types of occurrences. This type of interview is called Behavior-Based. They try and gauge the candidates’ problem solving skills.

Must do for candidates during Behavioral Interviews-

Listen carefully for what is being asked.
Put your example in a descriptive manner.
Always end on a positive note.

Interviewer’s evaluation on negative traits
Poor personal appearance
Lack of planning / insights for career
Lack of confidence / poise
Failure to look the interviewer in the eye
Limp handshake
Lack of tact, maturity, and courtesy
Failure to appreciate the value of experience
Overemphasis on compensation / remuneration
Making excuses for unfavorable events in work history
Condemnation of past employers

Tips for the First Interview –

Time is limited. Try and highlight all important points.
Remain clam, patient, reasonable, and gracious.
Minimize time on nonproductive questions and answers.
Listen actively and carefully.
Express your enthusiasm for working with the organization – always works!
Thank the interviewer for an interesting, informative interview.
Write down the names of the people you met and any other information you learned.

Inappropriate interview questions –

Some interviewers just are not professional and end up questioning on a lot of personal areas and inappropriate issues. Only the candidate can decide if he / she wants to answer the question asked – or walk out.

Personal Questions

Questions about Your Spouse/Boyfriend/Girlfriend
Questions about Children
Questions about Your Relationships
Questions Regarding Values and Sexual Mores
Questions Regarding Your Age
Comments Indicating Tokenism

Common questions asked before ending the Interview process –

What compensation package do you have in mind for this position?
Would you please give me some information about your benefits program?
When do you expect to make a final decision on closing this position?
When can I expect to hear from you?


1 Comment »

  1. Good sample answers to these common interview questions and sample behavioral questions and answers can help you prepare for your own job interview. These guidelines, available at the free website Best Job Interview can help you plan the answers you will give.

    Comment by Julia — June 29, 2008 @ 3:44 pm

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