Interview & Group Discussion

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INTERVIEW 

How to Dress up

  • Males – Formal (Coat & Tie), Females Formals or Saree, Sober Make up, light Deodorant/Perfume, bag, Pen , Highlighter, Certificates, CV, Visiting Card, Mobile Off, Reach 15 minutes early

HOW TO PREPARE EMOTIONALLY FOR THE INTERVIEW

  • Focused, enthusiastic, confident, crisp & to the point, passionate, ambitious, team person.
  • Your energy, maturity, emotional stability& Cultural fit will determine whether you get hired.
  • First impression matters. Normally the most qualified person never gets hired.
  • Read the job description and research company carefully. Ask for more details
  • Look into the eyes of the interviewer and act confidently.
  • Be honest and enthusiastic and highlight your strengths by giving examples of Important Qualities – Personality, Motivation, Leadership, Flexibility, Decision Making, Go Getting Attitude, Conflict  & Problem Solving Skills, Loyalty, Integrity, Creativity
  • Describe your personality honestly and why this job excites you. Do not speak ill of your previous company.
  • Do not try making a Positive when asked about a Weakness “I’m a perfectionist” and turn it into a positive. Interviewers are not fooled. Honestly highlight a skill that you wish to improve upon and describe what you are proactively doing to enhance your skill.

Beliefs you must develop

You are a Winner & Good Things Will Happen

Failure is Not Final; Failure is Feedback 

Patience is a Virtue  

No One is a Finished Product 

Everyone is Created for a Bigger Purpose 

HOW TO HOLD THE INTERVIEWER’S ATTENTION?

Attention Level – 0 to 10 Seconds is 100% ,10 to 60 Seconds it falls to 50%,  60 to 90 it falls to almost 10% if there are no interruptions. Near the end of your long response the interviewer starts to formulate their next question unless you keep them engaged.

Ask a Question – By asking a question you promote two-way communications and minimize the risk of talking too much.  This helps you ensure they are listening while you talk

SOME QUESTIONS YOU SHOULD PREPARE FOR

  •  Tell me about yourself?

EXAMPLE

 “I am a presently ‘Senior Executive Accounts’.  I have a lot of experience in tax issues and audit. (expertise and skills)  My experience includes carrying internal audit for ISO 9000 and resolving tax issues for the last 2 years (insert knowledge or skill)  I have worked in the Construction Industry and t6he Media Industry. My background also includes roles as Junior Accountant (position title), Senior Accountant (position title) and Senior Auditor (position title).  My education/certifications include CA (degree or certification) and M. Com.  I would like to be described by my Colleagues as ‘results focused’ & ‘details oriented. Highlights of my professional accomplishments include winning the “Employee of the Year Award in 2003 and the ‘Best Suggestion Award in 2004

  • Why do you want to leave your previous organization and join us?

EXAMPLE

“My company merged with another firm and the new management wanted to bring in their own team. Prior to the merger I was a strong performer with positive performance reviews.” Provide References and Proof – Provide references from a former colleague and boss to verify his performance. Demonstrating a confidence and willingness to provide references to support your reasons for leaving is a powerful way to ensure you are believed.

  • Give an example of a successful project, your role & why it succeeded?
  • How would your subordinates describe your management style, strengths & Weaknesses?
  • Give me an example of handling underperforming employee
  • Where do you see the industry going? What are you doing to stay on top of these changes? 
  • What are the most important things to you about any job?  Is it the pay, the opportunities, feelings of self-worth, fellow employees, location, benefits, etc.? 
  • Tell me about a time when you accomplished something significant that wouldn’t have happened if you had not been there to make it happen.
  • Describe for me a time when you may have been disappointed in your behavior.
  • Tell me about a time when you had to discipline or fire a friend.
  • Tell me about a time when you’ve had to develop leaders under you.
  • Do you want to ask me something?

EXAMPLE OF QUESTIONS YOU MAY ASK
– What position are you considering me for? What are the top challenges that I’ll face in this job?

– What are the characteristics of people who are most successful in your company?

How to prepare emotionally for the Interview

  • Worst case – Not hired. –This is practice and I will learn from it.  It is one out of the 100 chances you will get. .
  • I will be honest & frank – God will decide the result
  • I will be patient. I will not get stressed out. I will be positive and hopeful to the end.
  • There is nothing to lose and all to gain.
  • I will not be negative about my present Employer or any thing else.
  •  Your enthusiasm, confidence and energy will determine your success.
  • Normally the most qualified person never gets hired.
  •  This is because of the ‘Cultural fit’ & the ‘personality fit’ are  important.
  •  Interviewers receive and interpret all  inputs coming from you and evaluated your emotional state.
  •  REMEMBER = When you are feeling great you project a positive image of yourself and are more “likable” and “hire-able.”
  • SUGGESTIONS TO FEELING GREAT:
  • Exercise – This gets your blood flowing to your brain & improves your mood  instantly.
  • Listen to Music, Write / repeat Inspirational Phases, Imagine doing your favorite activity.
  • Remember a time when you were absolutely at your best.
  • Imagine how it will feel when you have landed this fabulous position.
  • Get ready to be hired, and you will be hired.

HOW TO PREPARE AND BEHAVE DURING AN INTERVIEW

  • Read the job description and company profile carefully.
  • Ask the employer for more details.
  • Write down the name & contact number of the recruiter to call back later.
  • Find out more about the company, the job and the industry.
  • Be punctual for your interview.
  • Carry your resume, transcripts, certificates and relevant documents .
  • Look into the eyes of the interviewer and act confidently.
  • Be honest and enthusiastic and highlight your strengths.
  • Show loyalty to old employer and fulfill responsibilities before joining.
  • Follow up on the status after two or three days showing interest. 

WHAT INFORMATION TO GATHER ABOUT THE COMPANY

  • Industry
  • Company position in the industry
  • Competitors
  • Turn over.
  • Market Share.
  • What kind of a job it is.
  • What kind of a person they are looking for
  • Who is your future Boss
  • Who will interview

TYPES OF QUESTIONS FOR KNOWLEDGE WORKER

  • Do you own a personal computer and, if so, what kind?
  • What software do you know how to operate?        
  • Do you have a fax modem?                    Yes__________ No__________
  • Do you use an e-mail program?            Yes__________ No__________ 
  • What literature that relates to your profession do you read, including books, newspapers, trade magazines, etc.?    
  • What classes or seminars have you taken on your own during the last three years to advance your career and personal growth?
  • What efforts have you made at “networking” to advance your career? 
  • What volunteer or non-profit activities do you engage in?
  •  Where do you see your profession going in the next five to ten years?
  • Where do you see the industry going?                         
  • What are you doing to stay on top of these changes? 
  • What are the most important things to you about any job?  Is it the pay, the opportunities, feelings of self-worth, fellow employees, location, benefits, etc.? 
  • What efforts do you make to keep yourself healthy?  Do you exercise, eat a proper diet, refrain from smoking, take nutritional supplements, meditate, etc.?
  • Who do you consider to be your professional role model? Why do you consider this person to be so special?  How can you improve on that person’s contributions? 
  • When it comes to getting paid, are you the type of person that is more interested in a steady paycheck with good benefits or would you rather work for a company where there may be greater risk but yet greater rewards in terms of both pay and job satisfaction?  Please explain 
  • What type of incentive programs have you found to work best?

(NOTE : THE BELOW SECTIONS ARE STRAIGHT FROM THE INTERVIEWER’S MANUEL)

HOW AN INTERVIEWER LISTENS TO YOU

There’s a lot to listen for in a conversation. When a person speaks, listen to what’s NOT being said, as well as what’s being said (SEE Video on Body Language). The purpose of an interview isn’t merely to learn about an applicant’s skills or background ­ you’ve already given this information in the resume. ‘Listen beneath the words’ as  to who a person is. Listen for the qualities that are most matter to the position and to the company.

(NOTE : THE INTRERVIEWERS ARE TRAINED TO DETECT THE FOLLOWING)


1. CONFIDENCE AND SELF ACCEPTANCE
Beneath the surface conversation, listen to who a person is. Listen for how comfortable a person is during the silences within a conversation. All conversation waxes and wanes ­ during the pauses in a conversation, listen for the level of confidence and self-acceptance a person has. When s/he pauses to gather her/his thoughts prior to answering your question, do you sense nervousness or anxiety? The level of comfort a person exhibits during the pauses within a conversation says a lot. Listen for the level of confidence and self-acceptance beneath a person’s word.


2. FOLLOW THROUGH AND PERSISTANCE
Follow through and persistence is the unique ability to engage in a project and see it through — at all costs. The downside of persistence is the fine line that exists, separating persistence from stubbornness. Think about the qualities that are essential to the position – then, upgrade those qualities, envisioning a top performer in the position. Identify the desired qualities for the job – then pursue a line of questioning that will allow the quality to emerge. What line of questioning will bring forth the quality you’re looking for?

To ask the applicant to “tell me about your follow through abilities” isn’t going to reveal anything but an artificial response. Use your own experiences to identify impactful questions. What line of inquiry would bring out YOUR perseverance? A question about personal commitments and passions, or a question about your project management skills? My guess is that you’ll learn more about a person’s persistence by asking them about their passions vs. previous job responsibilities.


3. INTEGRITY
Integrity is about being responsible for our actions and inactions; it’s about keeping one’s word — to oneself and to others. It’s about being responsible for handling whatever happens, and making adjustments so problems don’t reoccur. When one is responsible, one doesn’t blame or complain. Listen for how the applicant responded to situations in the past. Does prior behavior demonstrate responsibility, integrity and keeping one’s word? Listen for level of ownership and the attitude one has in accepting responsibility. (Hint: You’ll also learn about their leadership qualities in this conversation.)


4. CREATIVITY
The most tedious jobs benefit when performed by a person who thinks creatively. Listen for the level of comfort in considering and/or behaving in an “out of the box” way. Don’t confuse style with creativity. Creative thinkers can present very “ordinary.” Listen to a person’s mind when assessing their creativity. A bold dresser who looks “creative” might very well be a rigid thinker. A conservatively dressed person might be an extraordinary creative thinker. Don’t let appearances fool you.

5. STANDARDS
We’re all motivated by our values, whether we realize it or not. Values are what motivates and sustains us. They are the core of who a person is. What standards motivate the applicant? Does s/he seem to value working hard and getting the job done at all costs, or does s/he place priority on communication? Is s/he motivated by setting standards of excellence and quality, or are her/his motivators about connectedness and team? Listen for what drives a person. By doing so, you’ll have a better sense of “job fit.”


6. CLARITY OF COMMUNICATIONS
Communication isn’t just about the words a person uses. It’s also not only about the tone or affect the speaker uses. Communication is about being 100% responsible for the other person’s listening. Communication is also about making a profound connection with another human being. It’s about establishing rapport and being such an excellent listener that your responses perfectly answer the needs of the conversation.


How strong a connection has the applicant made with you? Did the person present authentically ­ or were they playing a role to impress you? Listen for how well a person listens and connects with you. This is a highly valuable skill ­ with enormous benefit for your team and organization.

7. PERSONAL PHILOSOPHIES AND BELIEFS
What are the beliefs of the person? What messages do they embrace or are passionate about? A person’s beliefs about opportunity will generate activity based upon their particular perspective and beliefs. Is their glass half full or half empty? A person’s personal philosophy about life will tell you something about how they’ll approach the challenges of the job. Guide the conversation to allow the person’s belief system to emerge. Then listen for it.

8. COMMITMENT
The word commit comes from the Latin word committere, which means to connect and entrust. Listen for a demonstration that the person has the ability to connect and entrust her/him self consistently to your product, service or organization. The ability to connect and entrust oneself is a key ingredient for rapport and building trust. Commitment is the quality that generates a consistent connection with another – an ability that benefits all types of relationships. Listen for evidence that the person can follow through on the connections they make – this is where commitment is found.

Connection + Consistency = Commitment


9. PASSION
Success comes effortlessly to the person who’s doing work they’re passionate about. But, must a salesperson be passionate about their product to be successful? Maybe not. Listen for what the person’s most passionate about – is s/he a people person or is s/he passionate about analysis? What motivates a person and lights their passion? When do their eyes sparkle with excitement? The more aligned a person is to their job, the more passionate and successful they and you will be.


10. AUTHENTICITY
Warren Bennis, professor and noted author of more than 20 books on leadership, change & management and who’s advised 4 U.S. Presidents, speaks about authenticity as a core ingredient of leadership. He says: “Becoming a leader is synonymous with becoming yourself. It is that simple. It is that difficult.”


How genuine is the person during the interview process? How comfortable with oneself does she/he appear? Authenticity is about being real & about being genuine – listen for conflicts that get in the way of a person’s authenticity.

BEHAVIOR  BASED INTERVIEW QUESTIONS

  • Are you looking for behavior based interviewing questions? While the questions and behavior characteristics listed below are by no means comprehensive, it might be just the jump-start you’re looking for. Try these…  
  • If You’re Looking For Behaviors that Revolve Around Leadership:
  • Tell me about a time when you accomplished something significant that wouldn’t have happened if you had not been there to make it happen.
  • Tell me about a time when you were able to step into a situation, take charge, muster support and achieve good results.
  • Describe for me a time when you may have been disappointed in your behavior.
  • Tell me about a time when you had to discipline or fire a friend.
  • Tell me about a time when you’ve had to develop leaders under you.
  • If You’re Looking For Behaviors that Revolve Around Initiative and Follow-through:
  • Give me an example of a situation where you had to overcome major obstacles to achieve your objectives.
  • Tell me about a goal that you set that took a long time to achieve or that you are still working towards.
  • Tell me about a time when you won (or lost) an important contract.
  • Tell me about a time when you used your political savvy to push a program through that you really believed in.
  • Tell me about a situation that you had significant impact on because of your follow-through.
  • If You’re Looking For Behaviors that Revolve Around Thinking and Problem Solving:
  • Tell me about a time when you had to analyze facts quickly, define key issues, and respond immediately or develop a plan that produced good results.
  • If you had to do that activity over again, how would you do it differently?
  • Describe for me a situation where you may have missed an obvious solution to a problem.
  • Tell me about a time when you anticipated potential problems and developed preventative measures.
  • Tell me about a time when you surmounted a major obstacle.
  • If You’re Looking For Behaviors that Revolve Around Communication:
  • Tell me about a time when you had to present a proposal to a person in authority and were able to do this successfully.
  • Tell me about a situation where you had to be persuasive and sell your idea to someone else.
  • Describe for me a situation where you persuaded team members to do things your way. What was the effect?
  • Tell me about a time when you were tolerant of an opinion that was different from yours.
  • If You’re Looking For Behaviors that Revolve Around Working Effectively with Others:
  • Give me an example that would show that you’ve been able to develop and maintain productive relations with others, though there were differing points of view.
  • Tell me about a time when you were able to motivate others to get the desired results.
  • Tell me about a difficult situation with a co-worker, and how you handled it.
  • Tell me about a time when you played an integral role in getting a team (or work group) back on track.
  • If You’re Looking For Behaviors that Revolve Around Ability to Work in Varying Work Conditions (stress, changing deadlines, etc.):
  • Tell me about a time when you worked effectively under pressure.
  • Tell me about a time when you were unable to complete a project on time.
  • Tell me about a time when you had to change work mid-stream because of changing organizational priorities.
  • Describe for me what you do to handle stressful situations.
  • If You’re Looking For Behaviors that Revolve Around Delegation:
  • Tell me about a time when you delegated a project effectively.
  • Tell me about a time when you did a poor job of delegating.
  • Describe for me a time when you had to delegate to a person with a full workload, and how you went about doing it.
  • If You’re Looking For Behaviors that Revolve Around Customer Service:
  • Tell me about a time when you had to deal with an irate customer.
  • Tell me about one or two customer-service related programs that you’ve done that you’re particularly proud of.
  • Tell me about a time when you made a lasting, positive impression on a customer.

QUESTIONS – SKILLS IN MANAGEMENT & SUPERVISION

  • How would your subordinates describe your management style?
  • How would they describe your strengths and weaknesses as a manager?
  • Give me an example of handling underperforming employee
  • Rate your management skills on a scale of 1 to 10
  • Provide three examples that demonstrate your selected number is accurate.
  • Describe work environment or culture or mgt in which you succeeded.
  • Give example of exceptional employee who sought more responsibility. Describe how you handled this situation day-to-day and over time.
  • Describe three components of your philosophy of management
  • What value can you add,  to an organization’s culture and work environment.
  • What factors are crucial for you to work most effectively?
  • Tell me how you have managed employee performance.
  • At a new workplace you will you develop relationships with new coworkers
  • How will you provide direction and leadership for a work unit.

 QUESTIONS TO TEST MOTIVATION

  • Environment or culture in which you are most productive and happy.
  • Imagine you got national award five years from now. Why? Circumstances?
  • What goals, including career goals, have you set for your life?
  • Define “success” for your career? Now & at the end of your work life.
  • Example of how you motivated another person.

QUESTIONS TO ASSESS TEAMS AND TEAM WORK

  • Give an example of a successful project , your role& why it succeeded?
  • Describe two situations from your past work experience in which you have determined a team was the best potential solution to a problem, a needed process improvement, or a planned change. How did each work out?
  • What actions and support, in your experience, make a team successful?
  • Give me an example of a time when your work group or department worked especially well with another work group or department to accomplish a goal.
  • Have you been a member of a team that struggled or failed to accomplish its goal? If so, what assessment did you make of the reasons for the failure

QUESTIONS TO ASSESS LEADERSHIP SKILLS

  • Tell me how you proceeded with the reorganization?
  • Have you ever been a member of a successful team? If so, describe the role you played on the team and in its success.
  • Give me an example of a time when you played a leadership role in an event, Describe how you led & how people responded to your leadership.
  • How would  your reporting staff or your peers comment about your
  • Tell me about a time when you created agreement and shared purpose from a situation in which all parties originally differed in opinion, approach, and objectives.
  • How would you build support for goals and projects from people who do not report to you and over whom you have no authority. Tell me about a situation in which you demonstrated that you can build the needed support.
  • What are the three most important values you demonstrate as a leader? Tell me a story that demonstrates each of these leadership values in practice within your workplace.
  • During your work experiences while attending college, tell me about a time when you demonstrated that you have leadership ability and skill.

QUESTIONS TO ASSESS INTERPERSONAL SKILLS (ASK EXAMPLES OF) `

  • When you had to work closely with a coworker whom you disliked. How did you make the relationship work so you could succeed for your company?
  • When you disagreed with the decisions of your manager or supervisor. Was the situation resolved to your satisfaction or did nothing change?
  • When you worked with a friend. What did you do to ensure that the friendship bore positive results for your company?
  • How did you resolve a conflict? What happened  to the coworker or team?
  • Describe behaviors, actions, or attitudes you are most likely to conflict with at work? Give  an example of a situation you addressed in the past? How was it resolved?
  • Name factors that make you an effective, valued coworker in your current job? What would your supervisor say are the three most important factors?
  • If you have reporting staff, how would these staff members describe you?
  • Describe a time when you demonstrated that you have the ability and desire to work effectively with your coworkers.
  • When you have entered a new workplace, describe how you have gone about meeting and developing relationships with your new coworkers, supervisors, and reporting staff.

QUESTIONS TO ASSESS COMMUNICATION SKILLS

  • You attend a weekly staff meeting with your supervisor. How do you communicate it to your reporting staff and coworkers?
  • Information you believe to be untrue or confidential has reached you via the grapevine. What actions will you take?
  • Example of a time when you were part of a project or team and you never knew what was happening.
  • Rate your communication skills on a scale of 1 to 10
  • Describe the work environment or culture and its communication style in which you experience the most success.
  • Describe five things about the communication within an organization that must be present for you to work most effectively?
  • How often do you believe it is necessary to withhold information Under what circumstances do you limit communication in your experience?
  • How have you handled a  boss, who fails to adequately communicate?
  • When you have entered a new workplace in the past, describe how you have gone about meeting and developing relationships with your new coworkers, supervisors, and reporting staff.

QUESTION: WHAT ARE YOUR WEEKNESSES

  • Conventional Approach : State a weakness that is really a positive or translating a weakness into a positive like “I’m a workaholic and I spend lots of hours at work ensuring I do my job to th e best of my abilities.”
  • Interviewers want to see  how you handle this & what your response indicates about you.
  • Hhighlight your strengths for this position
  •  Highlight an area that you are working to improve upon
  •  Describe what you are doing to improve
  •  Describe how this new skill improves your value to the company & Finally, ask a question.

EXAMPLE

  • “While there are several strengths I bring to this position, including being a top performer in my previous position and possessing strong industry knowledge, I am currently working to enhance my knowledge in the areas of business finance. I feel this is important because it allows me to directly relate products and services to customer’s return-on-investment and to recommend department cost saving initiatives.
    Would you like me to elaborate on either of these?”
  • NOTE : Asking a question will make the interview more conversational and avoid it becoming an interrogation.

QUESTION: WHY SHOULD WE HIRE YOU?

  • To answer this type of question, it is vital that you know yourself, your strengths, your skills and abilities and be able to communicate these characteristics effectively.
    When a recruiter asks such a question an invitation is being made to you to confirm or change a decision the interviewer has been forming about you.
    The interviewer may have decided that you are appropriate to proceed with to the next level and is merely looking for an affirmation of what he thinks you bring to the table, or he may be looking for signs that confirm a negative view he/she has and wants to see if the impressions are correct.
    If this is asked of you in the beginning of an interview and you have no clue about what the hiring manager is seeking, it is very important that you have a clear idea of what you are going to say beforehand. What are the areas that you have had most success in? What are you good at doing? What do you enjoy doing? What have bosses and team members said about you that highlights your value to the organisation?
    On the contrary, if you are asked this question towards the end of the interview, quickly review in your mind what the recruiter said were important ingredients to success in performance of the job. Tell the interviewer the reasons why you are the “Best Fit”. The more details you give, the better your answer will be. This is not the time to talk about what you want. Rather, it is a time to summarise your accomplishments and relate what qualities makes you unique.
    For Example:
    “From our conversation, it sounds as if you’re looking for someone to come in and join immediately. It also sounds as if you are facing problems with your financial modules. With my five years of experience working with financial modules, I have saved my company’s expenditure by streamlining the process. My high energy and learning abilities enable me to resolve problems easily. My co-workers would tell you that I’m a team player who has the ability to stay focused in stressful situations and can be counted on during testing times. I’m confident that I will be a great addition to your team”.
    Also, think of two or three key qualities you have to offer that match those the employer is seeking. Don’t underestimate your personal qualities that makes you unique; your attitude, personality type, working style and people skills are all very relevant to a job. However, if you come across as nervous or unaware of what you have to contribute, then that impression will be left with the interviewer and there will be less chances of progressing to the next level.

QUESTIONS ASKING YOU WHY YOU LEFT THE LAST JOB

1,  Be Succinct –  “My company merged with another firm and the new management wanted to bring in their own team. Prior to the merger I was a strong performer with positive performance reviews.”

Provide References and Proof – Provide references from a former colleague and boss to verify his performance. Demonstrating a confidence and willingness to provide references to support your reasons for leaving is a powerful way to ensure you are believed.

3.  Tell the Truth in Balance  Interviewers want to know that you were not the problem and to understand how you handled yourself.  Don’t just state the circumstances of your departure; also add any facts that positively reflect on your performance.

4.  Tell what you learned. – Demonstrates  you are a life-long learner & you look on the positive side .

5.  Speak Positively – Any negativity will only reflect negatively on you.  Do not express anger.

6.  Tell the Truth-  Do not speculate on the motives or feeling of the other people involved in the events of your departure. Focus only on the facts of what happened and what you did.

7.  Look them in the Eye  This  will convey your confidence, communicate that this is the truth and that you have nothing to hide.

8.  Practice and Conquer Your Fear.  Write out your response and practice saying it. First, practice responding out loud to yourself and then practice saying it to another person. Ask a friend to practice interview you. Ask them to ask you this question (“Why did you leave your last company?”) and a couple other questions you fear most. Practice until you are comfortable.

QUESTION – Why did you leave the previous Company

“Why did you leave (or seeking to leave) your company?”  

Be Succinct Do not go into great details unless they ask you for the details Provide References and Proof 
Bart could then say he is happy to provide references from a former colleague and boss to verify his performance. Demonstrating a confidence and willingness to provide refer ences to support your reasons for leaving is a powerful way to ensure you are believed.

Tell the Truth in Balance
  Interviewers want to know that you were not t he problem and to understand how you handled yourself.  Don’t just state the circumstances of your departure; also add any facts that positively reflect on your performance.

What Did You Learn
This is also an opportunity to describe what you learned and how you will handle things differently in the future. Describing what you learned demonstrates that you are a life-long learner

Speak Positively
State the facts in a positive manner. Any negativity you express will only reflect negatively on you. If you’re angry about the situation, you’ll need to process that anger in another manner befo e you interview.

Tell the Truth
Do not speculate on the motives or feeling of the other people involved in the events of your departure. Focus only on the facts of what happened and what you did.

Look them in the Eye
Most of us instinctively sense deception. Look the interviewer in the eyes when responding. This will convey your confidence, communicate that this is the truth and that you have nothing to hi de.

Practice and Conquer Your Fear
Write out your response and practice saying it. First, practice responding out loud to yourself and then practice saying it to another person. Ask a friend to practice interview you. Ask them to ask you this question (“Why did you leave your last company?”) and a couple other questions you fear most. Practice until you are comfortable with the words you say and how you deliver them.

QUESTION : Why do you want to change the industry or career?

  This is normal and healthy. However, you must have a well structured response

 “I’m concerned that you don’t have any previous experience in this field (or industry).“

 The strategy is to focus on what you do have rather than what you don’t have.

YOUR RESPONSE


First: “That’s a good concern. I’d like to share with you some additional information about that.”


Second
: “From my previous experience, industry research and informational interviews, I’ve learned that to be successful in this career (or this industry) requires the following :

            (a)

            (b)

Third: List your strengths and highlight how they will be useful to the company.

EXAMPLE “A Passionate attention to detail, persistence & unwavering focus on results, staying current on industry dynamics and professional certifications, as well as the flexibility and intellectual agility to respond to constant change.”

Fourth: You ask a question. “I can give you specific examples where I’ve demonstrated each of these talents. Which of these qualities would you like me to elaborate upon?”

QUESTIONS TO ASSESS SALARY DESIRED
ASKED FIRST TIME“I was paid well in my last position and in-line with market conditions and the results I delivered. I will be happy to discuss my compensation history in detail when we have decided that I’m the right person for this position.”
IF ASKED AGAIN“I realize that you need to make certain that my salary expectations are consistent with the salary range. To ensure we are aligned, please tell me the salary range and I’ll let you know how my salary matches the range.”
IF ASKED A THIRD TIME “When deciding on a position I consider the following factors; quality of the opportunity, quality of the company and the people I’d be working with, long term growth potential , location and compensation. Compensation is the least important criteria I use to evaluate a position. So far I’m impressed with what I have learned about this opportunity and remain very interested.”
NOTE

       Remember that the first person to give a number is at a disadvantage. You want to discuss salary only when they are absolutely convinced they can’t live without you. It is at this point that you have negotiating leverage and not until then.

QUESTIONS YOU MAY ASK DURING AN INTERVIEW
 Interviewers are more impressed with your questions than any selling points

Write your questions by starting with “What” or “How”.  Limit  “Why” questions because these cause the interviewer to defend or justify a decision or condition. 

  Never inquire about “What you get.”  For example, questions like “How much vacation time do new employees get?” or “How much sick time off do I get?”  These questions send the message that you are most interested in what you can get rather than what you can do for the company.

  The following are examples of questions you can ask.  These examples are presented to encourage you to write your own questions.

  Be as company and industry specific as possible when creating your own questions.

 EXAMPLES  

What are the key business reasons driving the need for this position?

Describe the three top challenges that I’ll face in this job?

What has to happen for you to know you’ve hired the best person?

What are the key deliverables and outcomes that this position must achieve?

Describe the top three initiatives for your company/department and how this position is linked to these initiatives.

What are the key metrics for measuring success in this position?

What competitors do you feel present the strongest competition?

How do you feel my style will compliment the team culture?

How would you describe the qualities of the most successful people at your company?

HOW TO ASSESS ORGANIZATIONAL CULTURE

Culture – values, behaviors, beliefs, and norms – expressed through words and behaviors

Cultural Indicators. – How you are treated? What phrases are frequently used by the interviewers? Is there a theme or unspoken tone to the questions you’re asked? How doe s the environment feel to you? How prepared are the interviewers? Are they on time? Were you given an interview schedule? Were you treated like a prisoner or a guest? Are your responses to their questions treated with suspicion or professional curiosity? How considerate is the company recruiter?

Questions Please describe the company or department culture in three words or three phrases.- How does t he company (team) handle conflict or differing opinions?- How does the company recognize employee accomplishments?
– Does the company have a “Code of Ethics?- Please describe the leadership or managerial style at your company?- What qualities do the most successful employees in your company possess?- What is the company’s attitude towards professional and educational advancement?

HOW TO IMPROVE WITH EVERY INTERVIEW YOU UNDERGO

  • REHERSE PERFECT ANSWERS
  • After an Interview go back home and write down important questions asked and answer them in a perfect way how you would have desired
  • PRACTICE
  • Write out your response and practice saying it. First, practice responding out loud to yourself and then practice saying it to another person. Ask a friend to practice interview you. Ask them to ask you this question (“Why did you leave your last company?”) and a couple other questions you fear most. Practice until you are comfortable with the words you say and how you deliver them.

  • RECORD LEARNING FROM ALL PREVIOUS JOBS
    Embrace the opportunity to describe what you learned from a recent job and how you will handle a similar situation in the future. Describing what you learned demonstrates that you are a life-long learner and you look on the positive side of most

COMMON MISTAKES IN AN INTERVIEW

Interrogationis one sided questioning and Interview is 2 sided. Having no questions prepared indicates you are not interested and not prepared. Interviewers are more impressed by the questions you ask than the selling points you try to make. Before each interview make a list of 5 questions you will ask.

 Making a Positive out of a Weakness “I’m a perfectionist” and turn it into a positive. Interviewers are not fooled. Highlight a skill that you wish to improve upon and describe what you are proactively doing to enhance your skill. the question and what your answer indicates about you.

Only Researching the Company, What about You? Job seekers must  research themselves by taking inventory of their experience, knowledge and skills. Formulating a talent inventory prepares you to immediately respond to any question about your experience. You must be prepared to discuss any part of your background.

 Leaving Cell Phone On: We may live in a wired, always available society, but a ringing cell phone is not appropriate for an interview. Turn it off before you enter the company.

 Waiting for a Call: Time is your enemy after the interview.  After you send a thank you email and note to every interviewer, follow-up a couple days later with either a question or additional information.  Contact the person who can hire you , not HR (Human Resources).  Additional information can be details about your talents, a recent competitor’s press release or industry trends. Your intention is to keep their memory of your fresh.

2 nd & 3 rd INTERVIEW

Have different expectations and they’re more comfortable with you.

 They expect you to be more informed about  company and express enthusiasm for the position.

Questions focused on company, industry, market, key position deliverables, and competition.

The difference is they’ve heard good things about you and expect you’re a strong candidate. But they’ll still have to be convinced. With 1st time interviewers, conduct yourself like it’s your 1st interview because this is your 1st interview with these evaluators.

Questions you ask during 1st interviews include:
– What are the key business reasons driving the need for this position?
– Describe the three top challenges that I’ll face in th is job?
– What has to happen for you to know you’ve hired the best person?
– What are the key deliverables that this position must achieve?
– What are the key metrics used to measure success?

Questions you ask during 2nd interviews include:
– Please describe three company initiatives and how the position is linked.
– What competitors do you feel present the strongest competition?
– What market dynamics do you feel will have the greatest impact?

7.        2nd interviews include meeting higher levels who are unskilled but they’re more comfortable interviewing and asking unorthodox questions. You may be asked to deliver a presentation. Panel interviews (multiple interviewers simultaneously), problem solving/simulation interviews, personality tests, mealtime interviews are also common on 2nd interviews. In 3rd interviews you’ll be questioned about your salary expectations and possible start date. 

INTERVIEW IS NOT SELLING

  • Interviews are NOT Selling Events

  • More like Playing Darts Blindfolded

  • The target  is  mental criteria each interviewer is measuring you against.
  • Only 3-4  “Darts of talent” can be thrown at the target
  • Locate  target and decide which three “talent darts” by asking questions.

  • Asking one of these “opening questions” at the start of each interview

  • Did you Score? After you present each talent-dart, check by asking a follow-up question.

  • Follow-up questions  will get interviewer feedback on the effectiveness of your answers. Asking follow-up questions will also influence the course of the interview.Job interviewers are just like playing darts blindfolded. If you don’t ask questions you’ll be in the dark, miss the target and loose the game. Ask opening and follow-up questions to win this dart game.
  • But remember you should not over do it

5 INTERVIEW TIPS

1. What are you looking for?
Interviewing is just like playing darts. The interviewer’s screening criteria is the target and each dimension of your talent is represented by a dart.  At the start of the interview you must find the target and decide which 3 “experience darts” to present. “What skills do you feel are required to be successful in this position?” is an effective question for you to ask at the start (“opening phase”) of the interview.
2. Ask Questions:
It is your responsibility to make sure the interview is an interview and not an interrogation. You do this by asking questions throughout the interview.
3 . Specific Examples:
Interviewers ask questions about your past experience to predict your future performance.  In response to their questions provide specific examples of your work and life experience. Focus on the actions you took and the results achieved.  Interviewers are less interested in what “the team did” or what you were “responsible for”.
4. How do you like me so far?
At the conclusion of each interview ask the interviewer for their opinion of your background. Ask them what t they feel your strengths are and what concerns they have about your ability. Interviewers form opinions based on a 45 minute interview. The potential for misunderstanding is enormous. Ask a couple questions at the end to make sure they understand your e xperience accurately.

5. Visual Aids:
Bring visual aids whenever applicable to convey the quality of your work. You can even prepare a few PowerPoint slides or one page document to communicate the quality of your work. Visual aids can include anything that you feel conveys what you have done and what you can do.

GROUP DISCUSSION 

HOW TO DO WELL IN A GROUP DISCUSSION

  • Grab the opportunity to be the first speaker and to Introduce the topic. Keep a pre-prepaired 5 sentence – EXAMPLE – Good Morning friends. – Name the Topic. – This has been the center of discussion in many forums and it the media. This topic has great importance s in our lives and I am glad that we are discussing this today. As per my view – I believe that ———.

Now let us have the views of some of us.

  • Listening carefully and look for a chance of butting in (Don’t do this too often).
  • Agreeing with a person and elaborating it by giving an experience or examples
  • Disagreeing & giving examples.
  • Looking on both sides of a coin. Intervening to get a balanced view.
  • Intervening during a conflict between 2 people fighting immaturely.
  • Co-operating & leading.
  • No cornering or making fun of participants
  • Intervening & giving a chance to a timid participant.
  • Giving examples & experiences
  • If you did not get a chance to start the discussion then you must try Concluding (EXAMPLE –This has been an interesting discussion. We have got diverse views. It appears to be evenly balances and hence we need to make our individual choices —— not your own view, no final decision )

Personality Traits Gauged in Group Discussion

  • Ability to interact in a team
  • Communications Skills
  • Reasoning ability.
  • Leadership skills.
  • Initiative & Enthusiasm.
  • Assertiveness.
  • Flexibility.
  • Nurturing & Coaching Ability.
  • Creativity.
  • Ability to think in ones feet.

HOW TO PREPARE EMOTIONALLY FOR THE INTERVIEW

  • Focused, enthusiastic, confident, crisp & to the point, passionate, ambitious, team person.
  • Your energy, maturity, emotional stability& Cultural fit will determine whether you get hired.
  • First impression matters. Normally the most qualified person never gets hired.
  • Read the job description and research company carefully. Ask for more details
  • Look into the eyes of the interviewer and act confidently.
  • Be honest and enthusiastic and highlight your strengths by giving examples of Important Qualities – Personality, Motivation, Leadership, Flexibility, Decision Making, Go Getting Attitude, Conflict  & Problem Solving Skills, Loyalty, Integrity, Creativity
  • Describe your personality honestly and why this job excites you. Do not speak ill of your previous company.
  • Do not try making a Positive when asked about a Weakness “I’m a perfectionist” and turn it into a positive. Interviewers are not fooled. Honestly highlight a skill that you wish to improve upon and describe what you are proactively doing to enhance your skill.

Beliefs you must develop

You are a Winner & Good Things Will Happen

Failure is Not Final; Failure is Feedback 

Patience is a Virtue  

No One is a Finished Product 

Everyone is Created for a Bigger Purpose 

How to Dress up

  • Males – Formal (Coat & Tie), Females Formals or Saree, Sober Make up, light Deodorant/Perfume, bag, Pen , Highlighter, Certificates, CV, Visiting Card, Mobile Off, Reach 15 minutes early

HOW TO HOLD THE INTERVIEWER’S ATTENTION?

Attention Level – 0 to 10 Seconds is 100% ,10 to 60 Seconds it falls to 50%,  60 to 90 it falls to almost 10% if there are no interruptions. Near the end of your long response the interviewer starts to formulate their next question unless you keep them engaged. By asking a question you promote two-way communications and minimize the risk of talking too much.  This helps you ensure they are listening while you talk

SOME QUESTIONS YOU SHOULD PREPARE FOR

Tell me about yourself?

EXAMPLE

 “I am a presently ‘Senior Executive Accounts’.  I have a lot of experience in tax issues and audit. (expertise and skills)  My experience includes carrying internal audit for ISO 9000 and resolving tax issues for the last 2 years (insert knowledge or skill)  I have worked in the Construction Industry and t6he Media Industry. My background also includes roles as Junior Accountant (position title), Senior Accountant (position title) and Senior Auditor (position title).  My education/certifications include CA (degree or certification) and M. Com.  I would like to be described by my Colleagues as ‘results focused’ & ‘details oriented. Highlights of my professional accomplishments include winning the “Employee of the Year Award in 2003 and the ‘Best Suggestion Award in 2004

  • Why do you want to leave your previous organization and join us?

EXAMPLE –  “My company merged with another firm and the new management wanted to bring in their own team. Prior to the merger I was a strong performer with positive performance reviews.” Provide References and Proof – Provide references from a former colleague and boss to verify his performance. Demonstrating a confidence and willingness to provide references to support your reasons for leaving is a powerful way to ensure you are believed.

  • Give an example of a successful project, your role & why it succeeded?
  • How would your subordinates describe your management style, strengths & Weaknesses?
  • Give me an example of handling underperforming employee
  • Where do you see the industry going? What are you doing to stay on top of these changes? 
  • What are the most important things to you about any job?  Is it the pay, the opportunities, feelings of self-worth, fellow employees, location, benefits, etc.? 
  • Tell me about a time when you accomplished something significant that wouldn’t have happened if you had not been there to make it happen.
  • Describe for me a time when you may have been disappointed in your behavior.
  • Tell me about a time when you had to discipline or fire a friend.
  • Tell me about a time when you’ve had to develop leaders under you.
  • Do you want to ask me something?

EXAMPLE OF QUESTIONS YOU MAY ASK
– What position are you considering me for?

– What are the  top challenges that I’ll face in this job?

– What are the characteristics of people who are most successful in your company?

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