Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Helpful Interview Tips

For a job applicant, especially for a fresh graduate, the word interview may connote several things and a mixture of thoughts. To some, interviews are like banshees that may paralyze them with fear and yet to those brave souls, they are simply interviews.

From my own perspective it is relatively easy. If you are the type of person who enjoys being interviewed, who knows yourself inside and out. If you are smart, and you know when to say the right things at the right time. If you are confident without being overly then everything should be okay. Always keep in mind, for every interview you are invited to, that you are selling yourself to a company you would like to be a part of. Like a new product in the market, make sure you are able to find your own niche and stress on how the company can benefit from you.

Of the 5 interviews out of my 15 years of work experience, the question “What can you say about yourself?” is, has been and will always be one of the first few things that you will be required to answer. Why? Because the interviewer would like to know if you know yourself well and if you are suitable for the job. You can base your answers on the following questions – Are you hardworking? (for the interviewer your answer should correspond well to what they really want to know – can you work under pressure? Are you reliable?) Are you flexible? (again, for the interviewer this would answer the company’s need for its employees to easily adapt to its demands like overtime, long meetings, no absences etcetera….)

Other common interview questions would include the following: What are your strengths? Weaknesses? How do you see yourself in the company after 5 years? Why should we hire you? Why are you leaving your current company? For other interview question and answer please refer to: http://techpreparation.com/64-hr-interview-questions-answers1.htm

Finally you would be asked whether there is something you would like to ask or add --
just to share with you, fresh out of College, during my very first interview when asked the same question, (mind you it was a panel interview), I answered them this:

"All I can say is that I was brought up by parents who has instilled in me the value of hard work, patience, and perseverance. During my growing up years they have always emphasized that the road to success is not easy but with these three principles I would never go wrong."

If you have had a couple of jobs in the past you can add:

"These were the same principles that guided me in every job I had and these will be the same ones I can offer your company if given the chance to be a part of".

All 5 people during that particular panel interview were speechless, I knew even before I reached for the doorknob that would lead me to the waiting area, that I have nailed them, and that the person next to be interviewed wouldn’t have a chance. Oh please don’t get me wrong! I am not being boastful but right that moment I know I would have made my momma proud.

Think of ways to sell yourself well and make sure that the interviewers are given the impression that you are a flexible person. That given the demands of the business you will always strive to do your best.

Prepare yourself by reading materials that can be of help, browse through the internet for websites that showcases tips for job interviews and get a load of information about the company you wish to apply to.

For HSBC, just to give you a heads up there may be accounts where selling is a must but you know you don't have to worry because the sales incentives are great! It's added income for you. So if asked if selling would be a problem for you tell the interviewers NO because you know you will be given proper sales training.

When asked what you know about Customer Service -- always include verbs like "empathize" meaning you are able to provide good customer service by putting yourself in the customer's shoes.

So with that I wish you goodluck!

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