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Vijay KuriyanOn Campus Lead

Managing Interview the freshers way!

The word “interview” could send shivers down the spine, especially of a fresher who has no idea what it’s all about. I am not sure about the fresher’s these days, but, this was true a good ten – fifteen years back when the information boom did not happen and we were exposed to limited details on interview cracking either in books/magazines or a chat with somebody experienced. But now, I must say that the scenario has changed and all of us have information in the palm of our hands, there is in fact an over dose of information and the problem is how to extract relevant information that we need.

If one searches the internet today, there would be a lot of stuff available on Interview skills, all that information could be summarized into few important points that should not be neglected. Let us discuss the important things that matter while giving an Interview and this is purely from a fresher’s standpoint.

Assuming that the resume is up-to-date, Profiles have been updated on Job portals, Social media status is pretty neat – (devoid of controversial statements) be it on FB, LinkedIn or twitter, let us get into details of how to prepare for an Interview:

  1. Research: Regardless of what the mode of interview is – ON Campus or OFF Campus, you must have basic knowledge of the kind of job role that you are applying for. Please ensure that you do research on what are the skills set required, the background of the company. These could be important information that would help you to impress the interview panel.
  2. Prepare: Unlike preparing for an exam which students nowadays do overnight, the preparation for an interview should be long-term. It starts with building a positive mindset, keeping abreast with news and other current issues, confidence building and it helps practicing on voice modulation.
  3. Personality Development: “Personality Development” is a term that has been a victim of over use. To put it in simple terms from an interview perspective – the way we carry ourselves right from dressing, appearance, attitude, confidence levels, communication, pleasant demeanor etc. fall under the ambit of personality development.  It’s highly recommended that these aspects are looked into and sufficient amount of time is spent on each of them.
  4. The Interview: The practice and preparation for interview boils down to this one day and what matters most is how you perform in the interview. Points listed below could help:
    1. Make sure you have had a good night’s rest and are feeling fresh on the day of the interview.
    2. Have a look at the newspaper and get the latest news for the day. Generally Group discussions are on some current topics of interest.
    3. Dress well. A very common adage is “first impression is the best impression” and that holds true. Dressing well makes you look confident and impressive, as per a study there is a very good chance of you being hired if you are able to impress the interviewer in the first 30 seconds.
    4. Everybody knows that being punctual for an interview goes without saying. It is advised that you reach the interview area at least 15 minutes before the actual reporting time. It helps you to regain your composure and get ready for the grill.
    5. Never show any sort of irritation or frustration if you have been asked to wait longer that you expected. Sometimes it is part of the interview process and checks the overall attitude.
    6. Greet the panel either with a firm hand shake or with a greeting as per the time. A smile should do no harm to your overall demeanor. Your introduction to the panel should be powerful and crisp.
    7. In the interview room make sure that you maintain adequate eye contact with everybody while you speak, you should ensure that your achievements are eloquently communicated. It is always good to support your statements with an example. Never beat around the bush on something that you don’t know and it is ok to say “I’m sorry I don’t have an answer to your question”. It will only up you honesty quotient.
    8. In a fresher interview, there is very little or no scope for salary negotiation. Most companies have a salary bracket that they set for freshers. When asked about your expectation of salary, it is always safe to answer – “as per company standards”
    9. Closing an interview is equally important, so make sure that you thank the interview panel and leave on a pleasant note no matter how your interview went.
  5. After interview follow up: After a job interview it is polite and advantageous to send a follow up thank you e- mail. It is actually is an opportunity to reinforce your candidature for the job role. You may also include any points that you were not able to answer during the interview for clarification.

As fresher’s, please understand that every interview is a learning experience, you should not be disappointed if you were not able to crack an interview in the first attempt, there would be many more opportunities coming your way  and every interview experience should make you more confident and  smart. All the Best!

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