7 Tips for Job Seekers

Being in the industry for so many years and coming across various type of people for various reasons (work wise!) makes you a person-reader and to an extent “Gyaani” (pun intended,not!) Last few months I’ve been deeply involved in hiring for all levels in the Organization unlike to previous role where I was only dealing with selection and on-boarding of people at top rungs. So dealing with them is a different experience altogether than what you experience or learn or observe when you are hiring professionals at the rungs below in the ladder.

While I’m at this stage of hiring I thought why not share it with job seekers who may pick from my two cents and benefit themselves!

“Be on time,not. Be a little before time!” Gives you enough time to settle down, get organized, and take a quick check on how you are looking. Find the resting room and go figure. Since you are commuting from one place to another, chances are your hair get ruffled or your shirt has come out from that tuck-in. And even if all is in place, one look in the mirror and telling yourself to “do well” works wonders, try it!

“Be well dressed” Dressing well doesn’t always mean dressing in coat-tie/stilettos format. Dressing in my humble opinion is to dress comfortably and tidily. Even if you are wearing a little casual dress, make sure you are carrying it well to not let it look like ‘I don’t care’. That I think is an important point to take care of.

“Be organized” Arrange all your documents in proper folder/nice envelope and ensure they are fresh copies and not ill folded, used-many-a-times ones. If you are required to carry certain documents for the interview meeting, ensure you have all of them on you, stating ‘oops, I forgot!’ doesn’t really leave a nice first impression on the recruiter. This gives a message that you are casual about this meeting, which in reality you may not be, but since you are not organized well, you are bound to leave a ‘chalta hai’ impression of yours.

“Be Scent-y” Smelling foul is really something that no one would appreciate, forget about recruiters. For that matter, even you would be uncomfortable if someone’s not smelling nice, right? So I’m not suggesting to smell extraordinary but ensure you are not smelling of sweat!

“Be equipped” With knowledge about the company that you’ve shown interest in working with. It is always good to do some research on the company and additionally if you know whom you gonna meet, about that person too. Having basic knowledge gives you a fair idea of where you are getting yourself landed (in a job!) and what kind of questions and/or pertaining to which field will be asked. Also, however old or typical this question sounds, the ‘why do you want to work with ABCXYZ?’ still remains a favorite of interviewers. This is their way to know your genuine interest in working with them and also how well networked in the industry you are in today’s world!

“Be in possession of pen” Always, always, always carry a working pen. By working I mean which will really write and not give up half way while you are signing a form! A pen is the basic stationary you should carry by default, irrespective of you attending an interview or not. Its a very important and helpful habit. And especially at interview you certainly need a pen either to sign somewhere or to fill in the job application. It shows you have invested time in getting ready for the interview. Again, a sign of you being organized. Oh and carry a Blue/Black pen, not a random pink or green inked!

“Beware of your Resume” this being the last tip isn’t the least important one, in fact this is really important! Always know what you’ve written in your resume. I’ve come across lot of job seekers who think resume is just a piece of paper and a formality. But my dear friends, a resume reflects your personality and works as a window which showcases your expertise. So it ought to be good, precise and giving right information. You can’t simply copy a resume from the Internet or a friend and then go blank when questions are asked related to it. That really put off the interviewers. Especially, HR panel! If you have written a flashy ‘objective’ in your resume but you have no clue what does it mean, you’ve bungled! Either write a simple resume or be ready to explain a flashy one! Not knowing resume means you are faking it all just to get in, which is not nice,really!


Interviewing Styles

There are so many ways of taking an interview. Contradictory to earlier times when it was only a face to face interview taking place or even a word of recommendation would fetch a person the job or the degree-read: diploma that one held was taken as a passing criteria for grabbing that job, today employers have numerous creative ways to judge a person’s abilities for the specific role. Examples being:

Face to Face[F2F] interview-Where the interviewers and the interviewee meet and the question-answer session is conducted.

Con-Call interview- Where the interviewee is likely to be in other city or is unable to make it to the interview point on specified days then the first round is conducted in the form of con-call and if the interviewee sounds good enough to meet for once then the second F2F round is scheduled.

Video-Conferencing-Where the interviewee is in other city or unable to make it to the face-to-face interview this video conferencing does a dual job of first round [con-call] and the second round [F2F] in one go.Easy and suitable for the both parties.

Presentation Interview-Where the interviewer asks the interviewee to prepare the presentation on certain topic pertaining to the area of expertise and then ask questions depending upon that. it again is a useful way to know the candidate’s ability to present,communicate,ppt skills and subject knowledge expertise. In this manner one is able to judge the candidate’s personality and flexibility as well. 

All these methods to know the candidate very well can be applied at any level and by any organisation. But the question still remains..Does any of these methods guarantee a fine, matured and perfect candidate ? Two question arise from this one question..1. Is there anything called a perfect candidate ? 2. If these methods are not enough to find a perfect candidate,then what is ?

Of course the answer to the question 1 being ‘no’ would make the answer to the question 2 as ‘null’ !!


DOs and DONTs before the Interview

How to go to an interview ? A very typical question that has no particular answer. What all is available is in the form of gyaan and experiences of those who would tell you all those do’s and don’t’s list,right ? Well, I’m spilling the beans based on my experience as the interviewer. When I see people coming in for the interview the first thing that I notice is how they are dressed up and how they are carrying themselves. It’s really important for the first impression to be the right impression,especially when you are applying for the senior roles in any organisation. Some things which I would want to suggest are:

The first impression which is gauged by 2 sense of the interviewer:eyes and nose.

Look your bestdoesn’t mean that you need to put up extra make-up or wear something which you haven’t earlier.It just means that you should look your comfortable best while going to the interview.Your attire or hair-do should not take your attention and make you uncomfortable.Just be well groomed.

Smell goodThe one thing which puts the interviewers off is the smell. If at all you are going to travel from a far away place to the interview please ensure that you reach at least half an hour prior to the time so that you can use the washroom and get yourself neat and tidy again.You should not smell foul that’s the mantra.

Wear decentclothes-Doesn’t mean that you should wear a suit and tie as compulsion. But it should look decent enough to be called as professional and suit the environment of the organisation you are visiting. 

The first impression which is gauged by the mind of the interviewer:

Reach on time- No matter where the destination is you need to start accordingly to reach on time. There is no excuse like ‘heavy traffic’ or ‘rains’ or ‘anything’ in this world for not reaching somewhere in time. If you know it will take time then start early. It’s pretty okay if you reach even 1 hour prior to the interview time but it’s always better than reaching late.

Carry your resume properly-Why not think about carrying the resume in an A4 size envelope ? Doesn’t take much right ? But let me tell you it does leave a good impression on the interviewers. Just imagine what would a folded and bare resume look like ? Also,make sure you carry at least 2 copies of your resume properly stapled and page numbered. Each kept in different envelopes.

Know the person-You should know the name and the designation of the person you are going to meet. And of course the contact person that has been mentioned in your interview details.It’s not necessary that the contact person mentioned will be the same person to take your interview. So,be careful and remember the names.

Accessories-Don’t be too much loaded with a lot of accessories in your hand. Carry a nice hand bag or a brief case to keep your keys,pen,mobile etc. If at all you are carrying a shopping bag or a polyethylene bag make sure you leave it in the car OR at the reception with the receptionist requesting her to keep an eye on that OR outside the cabin into which you are getting in for the interview. Carrying lot of things in your hand is a no-no because it just makes you look clumsy. 

Switch Off-Please,Please,Please make sure that you switch off your mobile phones. No keeping it on vibrator mode. Just plain and simple switch it off. Please.Nothing is urgent than those few minutes of your interview time which would mark your career graph,right?

Now all set for the interview ! Just be yourself and face it gracefully.Be cheerful and take time to speak anything that you want to rather than jumping on the answers right away.Listen carefully and ask questions wherever required !

Good Luck !

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