About the Author

 Welcome to ”How to attend an interview”

My Interview experience and the experiences that I had heard from others are mentioned in this site. I had attended many interviews and had interviewed/recruited many candidates.  ”How to attend an Interview” came to light from all these experiences. If this site helps even one person in clearing an interview, I would be very happy. Please note that these are just my ways and opinions. You are free to post your opinions and can also share your interview experiences in the comment section. It might be of great help for other candidates. Good interview experiences will be published in this site.

Kevin

kevinsinterview@hotmail.com

 

Mind-set

Mind-set for Attending an Interview

 

Hello…, Welcome. You have come to the right place.  You must have got an email or a call letter for an interview….right?.  How do you feel right now..?  Are you happy and excited, or are you nervous? If you are happy, excited and will remain the same, even on the Interview day, then you do not have to read any more. You will get through the interview. Problem with some people are that they will be excited as soon as they get the invitation, but will become very nervous as the interview day approaches. This is where the trouble starts.

 

Thinking how to attend an interview

 

Whatever your situation is, do not be nervous. You might need this job very badly as you are in heavy debt, or might need it to pay your bills, or even if the firm that has called you for an interview is the one that you wanted to join for a long time. Let it be anything. Once you are nervous, then your chance of succeeding in the interview will be reduced to a great extent.

Let me narrate an incident that I had to go through a few years before. A start-up company heard about me (The firm that I was working was also a start-up, and I had 8 years of experience), and called me for an interview. Actually it was a direct telephonic call from the firm and was not an e mail. I was in a good position and was happy in the firm that I was working in, when I got this call.

 

Preparing interview questions

 

After two days, I attended the start-up company’s interview, asked for a high salary and a placement near my home town. They agreed for everything that I had asked for and I got the Job. Just thinking that even if I do not do well in this interview, I am not going to lose anything was the one that helped me here. But the story does not end here.

normal_good_job_green_ribbon-1

Few days after this interview I got another mail from one big corporate firm asking me to attend their interview.  I had sent my resume to this firm a month before and had actually forgotten about it. The interview was on the same day that I was supposed to leave for my home town for the new job. This was a big one for me. I never had high grades in Engineering and this call from such a big firm surprised me. I had an impression that, even if I attend this interview, I will not be selected.  So why go through it? I was confused and did not know what to do.  I decided not to attend the interview.

puzzled

I was able to settle everything with my old firm within a week and was ready to go home. I had packed my bags and even parcelled my vehicle. My train was at 8.00pm and the interview was at 4.00pm. Actually I was so happy that I would be leaving to my home town in few hours. It was boring from morning doing nothing but sitting inside the room alone. Around 2.00pm, I felt, ok what I am I going to lose by attending this Interview? So I went to a nearby Internet café, took some print outs and started out to attended this one. The technical interview was conducted by a person who was highly qualified. I could not answer most of the questions that were asked. I was able to answer a few.

 

Interview panel

 

Then I got a chance to ask questions to the interviewer. I utilized this chance very well. Since this was a start up, and as the firm that I had worked before was also a start-up, when I joined, I was able to ask him lot of questions. This impressed him. It was because; all the questions that I asked him were genuine ones. He in fact was very interested in answering each and every question.  Hence if you get a chance to ask questions to your interviewers then don’t be frightened. Utilize this chance very well. They will be very happy to answer your questions and would also be impressed.

But if you are a fresh graduate and do not know much about the job that is going to be assigned to you, then just ask a few questions and make sure you do not make a fool of yourself. The questions you ask should not back fire.

So the Technical interview was over and I got through it. Next it was HR’s turn. I asked for a high Salary (Very high). He just looked at me and was surprised that I was asking for such a high salary. He went back to the Technical person who interviewed me, consulted him and came back. His response was that I will be posted in Head office and not in the same city. I said NO. I am not interested.

business_male_stern

Surprisingly after chatting for some time, he accepted it. He asked me to come and collect the Appointment letter after half an hour. Again I told him NO, I cannot wait for half an hour as my train was at 8.00pm.  He asked me to come after 10 minutes and collect the letter.  Actually I was surprised and confused. Everything that I said was being accepted and did not know what to do.  One advantage was that this Company was a big one and the Salary that I negotiated was very high. But the other point was that I will not be able to work near my home town which I wanted very badly. I collected the letter and left for my home town in the evening.

As I had to report to duty only after 15days,I had enough time to take a decision. The decision that I took was to join this big Corporate Company.  It turned out to be a good decision.

Got through the Interview

What do you think helped me here? The mind-set. I accept I had a job, hence did not feel the need for another one. Another point was that I was going home after a long time. I was excited and happy. What I am talking here is the mind-set that I had while going for the interview.  It was like, it is fine if I get this Job, and it is also fine if I don’t get it. I repeat, I had this attitude as I had a good job in hand. I would have been nervous if I did not have a Job. The name of the corporate company alone would have made me nervous.

Here I was able to have this mindset only because I had a Job. I am just informing you to have this kind of mind set while you are going to attend an Interview. I know it is not easy. It depends on your circumstances.  But try it.

Please note, I did not excel in the interview.  I was an average person with low grades in Engineering. But the interview board selected me because,

 

I was not nervousNervous while attending an interview

 

I had the attitude that,” If you do not select me, it is your loss, not mine.”

Attending Interviews

 

This does not mean that you need to be arrogant.angry when interview questions are asked

 

 

 

Nor does it mean that you need to act like you are the only person in the world whoOver confident when attending interview
is best suited for this post.
If you act as if you are the only best person on this planet, you can be sure that
the loss will only be yours.

 

What I intend to say is that, be confident, not arrogant.

Confident while Attending Interviews

 

 

 

 

Do not be over confident. Over confident during Interview

 

Be brave, be calm. Do not provide an impression to the interviewer that you need this job very badly. It gives an upper hand for them.  Make them feel that they need you, and not the other way. Just showing others that you are excited and feeling nervous within yourselves will not help. That would be cheating yourself.

Just imagine, how you would feel, if you are going to watch your favourite game in a stadium. You will feel excited … right?  Will you feel nervous..? I hope not.  You will have an excitement even though you do not know what the result would be. Right….?

Feeling excited to attend an interview

Have that kind of excitement. You are sure to succeed.

 

 

Preparation

Preparing for an interview

Preparation before attending any Interview is absolutely necessary.  It is a known fact that an interviewer can ask anything that they want, and hence some people think why they should prepare. Please note, Preparation is a must. The interviewer will definitely ask at least some basic questions regarding the post that you are appearing for.

 

How to attend an interview

 

Imagine you are being interviewed for the post of a Network Engineer. You definitely need to prepare at least for the basic things that a Network Engineer needs to know.  If you are not able to answer what an IP Address is?, then the interviewer knows what action to take. It shows that you do not know the basics that a Network Engineer needs to know. Go through the basic stuffs that you need to know first. Then prepare the maximum that you can.

 

Interview questions

 

Research about the firm that had called you for an Interview. Most of the firms would be having websites. Go through it so that you will be able to get a rough idea about the firm. This will help you in answering some questions that they ask about themselves.

searching interview questions

 

Do not over do. Even in the preparation part, go through all the stuffs that you need to know and then leave it. The interviewer can ask about anything under the sun. He might ask you questions related to the topic that is necessary, or he might even deviate from it and ask crazy questions. So do not have the impression that you will be able to answer all the questions. You will not be. No one will be. Just prepare well and be ready.

The below mentioned site provides some interview questions that were faced by different candidates.

http://jobbuzz.timesjobs.com/employee-interview/

Food

Food before an interview

Most of the candidates ignore this part.  You should be careful about what you eat and drink, not only on the day of interview; but the day before the interview also. Do not go for a party the day before, if you are going for an interview the next day.

 

Celebrating before interview

Celebrating before interview -2

If at all you must go, then think twice what to eat and drink. You know what is good for your stomach and what is bad.  Do not eat something that will upset your stomach. You might have an upset stomach even the next day which is also your Interview day. You would have waited for this interview call for days, months, or even years and don’t need to spoil it now.interview celebration

Avoid alcoholic drinks the night before the interview day. (This does not mean that you can drink on the interview day. No don’t do it). No interviewer will like to interview a candidate with a hangover. Celebrate after the interview.

 

Dress for an Interview

Dressing for interviews

As you know, first impression is the best Impression. Best way to impress your interviewer first time is with your appearance.  For that you need to dress properly. You know what suits you the best as I do not know from which country are you from. Each country has a different dress code depending on the climate over there. So dress according to that. Do not wear very tight or very loose dress. Avoid Jeans and T-shirts. Make sure that your dress is neat and tidy.  Wearing a see-through dress (especially for ladies) is a big NO.

interview dresses      Interview         Interview dress 3

                       No fashion parades please

Again, do not over do it. You are not attending a fashion parade. You are attending an interview. Have that in mind and dress accordingly.  The dress that you use depends on the country that you are in. Avoid using strong perfumes. Use some mild ones if you feel you must.

Men can have a haircut if it has over grown.

 

bear_gets_haircut

 

Don’t have spikes unless you are being interviewed for the post of some crazy Music Channel as a Jockey.angry_punk

Polish your shoes properly. Do not neglect this.

 

dress_shoes

Reaching the interview premises

Interview time

This is another area where many people create mistakes. Everyone knows that they need to reach in time.   That does not mean that you need to reach very early.  The right time to reach the firm where you are being interviewed would be 10 or 15 minutes before the interview.  My best suggestion would be before 5 minutes. I leave the decision to you.

 

surveillance_camera

 

If you reach very early you would not know what to do by sitting in their office.  This gives them a chance to observe you, which might make you more nervous.  If you sit there and start referring your books, then you are giving them signals that you have come for the Interview without preparing.  So never do it. You can read some newspaper or magazines that you find on their table.  That will relax you. If there are other candidates over there, have a chat with them

 

There could be circumstances where the interview is not near the place you live. I would suggest that you reach the city or town where ever the interview is scheduled, a day before especially if you are new to that place. If you reach a day before, then you can find exact location of the firm, which makes reaching the place easily on the interview day.

 

I had accompanied my brother for an interview which was very far from our home town. We reached the city the day before and found out the location, but were not able to find the firm. We thought we will find the firm the next day and enjoyed the rest of the day going around the city. We both were just out of college and gave more importance to enjoying ourselves going around the city rather than finding the office where the interview was the next day.

 

running_late for interview

 

But next day even though we reached the location early, we were not able to find the firm that had called him for the interview.

The main reason was that this was a very small firm and did not even have a name board in front of their office. We did not have any clue that the firm was so small as they had a great letter pad. These were those good old days were the interview calls came by post and not by email. No wonder we struggled a lot on the interview day to find the firm. We found it after struggling for some time. We were not late, but barely made it.

 

Do not be like this. Find the office where you need to go the day before, so that you will not have any trouble the next day. Reach this area at least half an hour before the interview. But do not enter their office. Go to a nearby café, have a coffee, spend some time there and enter the firm 10 or 15 minutes before your interview time.

 

Once you enter their office, be confident. There would be a lot of persons and cameras watching you the minute you enter their office. You would find many other candidates who would have come for interview. Smile at them. Engage yourself in a chat with some of them.

animated_conversation

Chat with other candidates

Please do not neglect this part. Do not act over smart. Be yourself. You will know why. Continue reading.

 

One of my friends had gone for an interview and this was a junior position in a Bank. This was a good Bank and he was a Commerce graduate just out of College. He had appeared for different other higher exams in finance but did not get through.  But this person was a great guy. He is very confident and gets along with others very easily.

He entered their office 5 minutes before the interview. He was asked to wait in the lobby. There were a large number of candidates for the interview. He was surprised by the huge number of candidates.  He got himself engaged in conversation with the other candidates.

He came to know that many of them had masters in finance and most of them were far better than him. They waited for nearly an hour and still no one was called for the interview.  Later one person came out and asked nearly 80% of the candidates to leave. All of them were surprised and angry as the interview had not even started.

 

angry

The truth was that everyone was being watched by the interview board during this time. They removed all the candidates who were not communicating to others, and the ones whom they found preparing for interview. The bank needed many candidates and the first screening was done this way.  My friend ended up getting the job as there were many vacancies.

 

You are being watched

By the way, he left this bank within a year and is working in a big multinational finance company now.

 

There were lots of candidates who were much more educated than my friend, but they did not even get a chance to be in front of the interview board/panel.  They might have been more efficient than him in their work, but they lost, as they did not get a chance to be interviewed.

Note: No firm would want a candidate who does not mingle with others. You are joining a new company and they need you to be part of their family. Hence even if you are an introvert, try to engage in a conversation with others while you go for an Interview.

Next – Aptitude test.