Nearing the completion of your PGDM / MBA course? Surely, there is much more going on in your mind than just the final semesters! This is the real ‘Make or Break’ career defining time after the rigorous two years of the MBA grind. As dream companies visit your campus, your friends become your competitors, and you would wonder as to how to get that ‘break’ before others do.
While the knowledge acquired in the past would go a long way in helping you secure the ‘break’ that you seek, following these simple interview tips will surely supplement your efforts.
Do not be caught off guard. Take the initiative to know as much as you can about the company, its products, its promoters, top management and its recent news. By being aware, you create an impression of being seriously interested in ‘this’ company’s job rather than just getting job with ‘any’ company.
Practice is the key. Practice role plays with a person who has attended/taken interviews before and ask him/her to offer you constructive feedback. Work on the areas for improvement and go through the practice feedback loop again to firm up your learnings. List down the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) and prepare your answers. You can also record the rehearsal and see it yourself to get a feel of how you ‘appear’ to the interviewer. Work on the areas for improvement that you identify.
The first impression is the last impression! The importance of punctuality needs no further emphasis. Not reaching the interview on time sends out wrong signals; you set off on the wrong foot. Make sufficient allowance for traffic snarls and arrive at the venue at least 15 minutes before appointed time.
You don’t need to wear expensive clothes to impress the interviewer. Being dressed in business formals is a standard expectation. Wearing clothes that shape well on you will boost your confidence.
Give credence to your claims! Make sure to come up with examples from your past – it could be your excellence in academics, sports, or extracurricular activities that illustrate your behavioural strengths. For instance, being president of your college, secretary of a club, or member of a committee must be mentioned to strengthen your candidature.
Summarize your project/internship
The success of your summer project might be the yardstick of your performance. Though you might have a lot to narrate, prepare a few points to describe and highlight your project’s objective and what you did to achieve the desired results.
It’s all in your mind! So be calm, stay focused and don’t fret. There might be a lot of anxiety before you enter the interview room. Take deep breaths and focus on the interviewer’s questions. Make a conscious effort to speak slowly and Listen carefully. Give yourself sometime to collect your thoughts before answering questions. You may use fillers to buy yourself more time.
Be confident and enthusiastic
Your body language is as important as your verbal communication. So walking straight, holding your head high and giving a firm handshake all add to a positive start to the interview. Keeping eye contact throughout the interview, leaning a bit forward, a positive nod when required add to show your level of interest in the interview.
In interviews, honesty is indeed the best policy! When an interviewer asks you something for which you don’t have an answer, it’s much better to admit it than to pretend otherwise. If you have committed a mistake in the past, it’s ok to accept it and mention your learnings and what you have done to not repeat this again. The employers are not looking at someone who knows all the answers but are surely not looking for someone who is not honest.
When an interviewer gives you an opportunity to ask questions, don’t ever Say ‘No Questions’. Interviewer wants to know whether you are interested in the details of the job, the company or the department you would be working for. So be prepared with intelligent thoughtful questions that will reflect your interest for the job.
Thus, overcome the fear, be yourself and give it your best shot! Success will follow naturally.