Sunday 6 July 2014

Career Kit: Tell Me Something About Yourself

How often have you faced this innocent line in an interview,  which is supposed to be a question and intended to  explore your strengths and weaknesses, achievements and wins? And how often have  you answered that with  utmost sincerity while the interviewers pick just two words.  Which two words? That actually depends on what you spoke.

That gives you a nagging feeling, while you are so well prepared for the interview,  the guy on the other side of the table, either just had a bad client meeting or a dressing down from his senior or whatever be the reason for his wandering  mind, had gone through your  resume weeks back when the HR had forwarded it to him, liked some aspects of it, asked the HR executive to arrange a face to face and then forgot everything about the candidature.

So that 'Tell me something about yourself' is at times more to do with him, than you - revive his amnesia than assess your abilities. So keep it short, just enough to wake him up. Human memory is short, do give him that benefit of doubt. Once you  grab his attention,  the questions that follow will be critical.

In response, as a fresher,  one probably might not have much to say and they rave about school achievements, college debates, how he was awarded the best intern, how he fared in a group discussion with leaders recently, how many followers he has for his blogs and how so very much he is open to learning.  

However, an experienced person really has so much more to say-quantify his achievements, substantiate his tall claims in his multiple roles and in various capacities. The risk is when you go on and on with your stretched monologue, their attention spills over to your mannerisms, eye contact, pace, non verbal clues and along with your verbal content, something quite else gets communicated to the interviewer, which might not be favorable. So regardless of experience,  the brevity in response to this line could well prepare both parties for a structured interview session.

Every time a case study or a situational analysis or problem scenario is shared in the elimination rounds, it is not  necessarily about right or wrong interpretations. It is to gauge your thinking pattern - logical, reasoning, creative,  left brain-er or right brain-er.

Group Discussion is  not always about how informed you are, how well you communicate, how articulate you are, how you influence others,  how you relate or negotiate,  what leadership qualities you display - it could be all of these or a particular trait that the interviewers are seeking to see in their new hires.  It could as well be just to identify your natural instincts and reactions.

BECKON is an outcome based learning model preparing students and freshers not just for any placement but a calling of their choice. The model is designed not only to assess the student's caliber but also align a program to achieve signed off outcomes, as mutually agreed. 

So BECKON goes one step ahead of placement - Performance!

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