Besides having the required qualification, it is important to make a good impression on an employer. To present yourself as the perfect candidate for the job, you should keep the following points in mind:
Be well-researched: There’s merit in doing some homework to understand the profile of the company and the role you are interviewing for. Being well-researched reflects as genuine interest in the job.
Dress smartly: Appropriate dressing accessorised with a cheerful smile is the prescribed dress code. Even if its a Friday and the company has casual dressing policy, an interviewee should dress in business casuals as it helps put across a professional demeanour.
Be candid and honest: One should never misrepresent their skill set or work experience. A smart interviewer will quickly figure out the depth of experience.
What to talk to whom: Most organisations have multiple interview rounds including those with hiring managers, leadership and HR. One should be able to strike a balanced and relevant dialogue with each of these different stakeholders who evaluate the same candidate on different aspects.
Ask the right questions: When an interviewer ends the discussion on the standard question – ‘Any questions for me’, one should smartly use the opportunity to find out more about the culture of the organisation, policies or may be even growth prospects.
Be sufficiently equipped: While its a mandate to carry a hard copy of the resume, one may even carry some work samples or collateral from their previous stints, only if they are not confidential. This strengthens your candidature and helps the interviewer ask relevant questions about your work experience.
What to tell: When asked the routine — ‘tell me something about yourself’, one should be smart enough to articulate their professional and personal highlights, instead of going back to their high school history.
For instance, talking about the values you stand for, or even your hobbies may help you strike an instant rapport with the interviewer.
Don’t panic: If you don’t know the answer to a question, don’t panic or try to come up with a convincing response. A candid confession of not knowing something is better than a giving cooked-up response to an interviewer’s question. It’s not just knowledge that you are being judged on. Several parameters such as culture fitment, values, educational experience et al are taken into consideration for hiring.
— authored by Rajeev Bhardwaj, vice president, human resource, Sun Life Financial Asia Service Centre, India
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