In simple terms, preparedness for an interview involves a meticulous planning for the event well in advance. The best way to start with is to think and try to uncover your interviewer’s greatest need, want, problem or goal. It starts with a preliminary research of the job one is applying for and the company or organization. Basic pre-hand knowledge of the job and the company is warmly received and creates a favourable atmosphere into the interview process. Also, to a candidate it generates confidence. Most of the interviewers are generally more interested or gives more weightages to the behavioural competencies of an interviewee as compared to the technical aspects. This is the thin line of demarcation of winning or missing out. A selection process is carried out with a long lasting relationship in mind for which generally the onus is more on the behavioural aspects. There are certain sure shots for which advance preparation can be made. These are known to all but in real sense, these are very tricky, literally a trap. Let us deliberate of a few such questions:
Why do you want to work at our company? Or what do you know about our Company? The interviewer just wants to know whether you’ve done any homework about the firm. If you have, you win and you win it big and if you haven’t, you simply lose. It gives you an opportunity to sell with the in-depth prior research undertaken about the company. A tip here, look for the company’s annual reports, advertisements, articles published etc. you may further get in touch with someone from the company to get a first-hand information.
What are your greatest strengths? A very soft and simple one and if you had not prepared in advance you are most likely to fumble. Before facing an interview, you should prepare a list of your greatest strengths. If you can prepare a specific example or two, to illustrate/ elaborate your each strength it will work wonders. Remember that the example chosen should be from your most recent and most impressive achievements. A few desirable traits may be: Task Accomplishment, Honest and Integrity, Good Communication ability, Enthusiasm and Passion, Dedication, Confidence, Team Player, Planning and Time Management.
What are your greatest weaknesses? This is much more difficult question that the words in it are. It is some sort of an eliminating question where an honest admission to a weakness will earn you respect and applaud but elimination for the job. The best answer to this question is a tricky one and the most common approach is to disguise strength as a weakness. Take a pause, speak about and try to add a principle or habit you practice regularly for healthy human relations. In such a situation, an unprepared candidate confesses, admit and try to unburden self of guilt of personal or professional life or career, which is nothing but self-elimination. Further, an experienced interviewer will create an atmosphere of ‘Silence’, no questions, no remarks, just staring at the candidate in a deafening silence just after the candidate has answered. An unprepared candidate in such a situation tries to come out of the situation by speaking out more of which most are unnecessary. It’s like a situation of digging one’s own grave.
Always keep in mind what Steven Cyros had said, “Remember: When disaster strikes, the time to prepare has passed”.
to be continued…