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After having 12 years of experience in several areas like HR, IR, ADMIN, I am unable to face Interviews and I am sure that I will do any type of HR Related jobs. Because since from my joining personally resolved all the issues at my level without troubling to any one.. Seniors pls suggest where I can correct my self.
From India, Bellary
Dinesh Divekar
Business Mentor, Consultant And Trainer
Manager -personnel And Administration
+1 Other

Dinesh Divekar

Dear Lokesh,

Your post brings out glaring difference between interviewer and interviewee. In your 12 year long tenure you must have conducted lot of interviews. However, when you wanted to be in the shoes of interviewee, you start getting butterflies in your stomach! It is easy to test others knowledge but giving test is difficult.

The second glaring difference that your post brings is about length of your service and confidence. Why your 12 year length of service did not develop confidence in you?

The third thing that your post brings out is that you have handled HR issues personally. For this you did not bother your superiors. Good quality of not bothering the superiors however, it has worked contrary in your case. Since you did not ask whether you handled the issue correctly, there was no one to give you feedback on your decisions. You have developed yourself but self-development beyond a point carries no meaning. This is the crux of issue. Your lack of confidence was because of lack of feedback to you.

Final comments: - In your post, there are few inconsistencies in the statements. You need to learn how to write the post in a sequence. You need to learn how to write in simple sentences rather than complex sentences. Transitory sentences were also missing. Hardly this is expected from a person with 12 years of service in HR. Therefore, my humble feedback is to improve your business writing skills. For this, you need to learn "concept of communication". Please note that I am saying concept of communication and not communication skills.


Dinesh Divekar

From India, Bangalore

Hello Dinesh sir,
Thanks for your wonderful comments and advise, actually taking interview is different but giving interview is different. I have attended interviews they will not stick to the subject or relavant topic, Ex: Job post is for PF section they have to ask that topic only or relevant to that topic actually they are not doing that (Position also counts). We know as per HR to take out the negetive points of interviewee. Hence request in this where I can improve suggest and to gain vast knowledge where we can improve and how we will became confident about everything.
Lokesh H R

From India, Bellary

Dear Lokesh,
As Mr. Divekar rightly said 'Building Confidence' and 'Trust' in your ability to win in Interviews is what you need to work on at this stage.
In Interviews, the Interviewer would like to know what you have to tell . So if you present your skills and experience in proper planned manner, your confidence will boost up during the Interview.Dont get afraid,remember a discussion with smiles,laughs kills the fear and stress. It gives way to a Healthly Discussion.
If you have the fear in your mind ,prepare yourself in front of Mirror at home.This will give you confidence. Also you need to study/prepare of what all you will be presenting before the Interviewer.
All the Best.

From India, Mumbai

Dear Lokesh,

Some of these tips might help you to face your interviews:

How to Give Best Answers To Tough Interview Questions- Part-1

The best way to prepare yourself for the interview is to know what may be coming and practice for it in advance. Fear of known can only exists when there is unknown. Take the time to understand some of the ‘Standards’ when it comes to interviewing questions. Some job interviewers ask tough questions to trip you up or to get you to reveal information you may be trying to conceal. Others want to get a better sense of your thought process or how you respond under pressure. Whatever the reason, you will want to be prepared.

The following are some of the most difficult questions you will face in the course of your job interviews. Some questions may seem rather simple on the surface but these questions can have a variety of answers. The more open ended the question, the wider the variation in the answers.

Please Note: in reviewing these responses, please remember that they are only examples, please do not rehearse them verbatim or adopt them as your own. They are meant to stir your creative juices and get you thinking about how to properly answer the broader range of questions that you will face.

Q. Tell me about yourself.

This is really more of a request than a question. But these few words can put you on the spot in a way no question can. Many quickly lose control of the interview during the most critical time- the first five minutes. This is not the time to go into a lengthy history or wander off in different directions. Your response should be focused and purposeful. Communicate a pattern of interests and skills that relate to the position in question. Consider your response to this question as a commercial that sells your autobiography. Provide an answer that includes information about where you grew up, where you went to school, your initial work experience, additional education and special training, where you are now, and what you intend to do next.

One of the most effective ways to prepare for this question is to develop a 60-second biographic sketch that emphasizes a pattern of interests, skills, and accomplishments. Focus your response around a common theme related to your major interests and skills. Take, for example, the following response, which emphasizes computers.

“I was born in Canton, Ohio and attended Lincoln High School. Ever since I was a teenager, I tinkered with computers. It was my hobby, my passion, and my way of learning. Like most kids I enjoyed computer games. When my folks gave me a computer as a reward for making honor roll my sophomore year, I mastered DOS, Windows, and Word Perfect within six months. I then went on to teach myself programming basics.

By the time I graduated high school, I knew I wanted to study programming. From that point on, everything fell into place. My life revolved around computing. By my junior year at Syracuse, I decided I wanted to work for a major software manufacturer. That is why I had an internship last summer at Fast Track Software.

I now want to work for a major player so I can be at the forefront of breaking trends and new technology. When my college roommate told me about his start in your department, I hounded him until he helped me get a referral, which brought me here today.

I am prepared to answer any questions you may have about my education and experience.”

This response sets a nice tone for starting the interview. The interviewee is able to say a lot within 60 seconds by staying focused. The message is clear: the interviewee has both passion and focus relating to the position. He stays on message and concludes by leaving the door open for additional questions about his education and experience.

Q. Where do you see yourself five years from now?

This open-ended question is one of the most difficult and stressful ones job seekers face. Employers ostensibly ask this question because they are looking for people who know what they want to do and who are focused on specific professional goals. Be sure you arrive at the interview with a clear vision of what you want to do today, tomorrow and five years from now. Be consistent with the objective on your resume and the skills and accomplishments you’re communicating to the interviewer. Your answer should be employer-centered. For example,

“In five years I hope to be working with an employer in an increasingly responsible position, which enables me to utilize my talents and work closely with my colleagues in solving important problems. I see myself taking on new and exciting challenges in an enjoyable environment and hopefully this will be with your company.”

Do not indicate that you hope to start your own business, change careers, or go back to school. Such responses indicate a lack of long-term interest since you do not plan to be around for long.

Q. Describe a major goal you’ve set for yourself recently.

Give an example of a goal you both set and achieved. Ideally, this should be a professional goal; such as improved time management skills, achieved new performance targets, or learned a new skill. Talk about results of achieving your goal. This indicates you set realistic goals and that you can focus on outcomes. Select an example that has interesting outcomes related to your efforts. The example should showcase your skills and abilities.

Q. Now that you’ve had a chance to learn more about us, what would you change about our company?

Be careful here. Most companies don’t want you to come in and shake up the place. At the same time, they don’t want someone who says, “Nothing, everything looks great here.” Seek a middle ground by focusing on one or two non-threatening issues that may have come up in your discussions. For example,

“From our discussion of the problem with the southwest accounts, I think we should look into the possibility of consolidating them the LA office. However, I think we need to do a thorough cost-benefit analysis of this region before making such a move. We may find the Phoenix office to be more beneficial.”

Such an answer indicates you are open to making changes but you also have a certain non-threatening decision-making style. Your response should sound sensible and innovative.

Q. We all have weaknesses. What are some of your major weaknesses?

This is not the time to confess all your problems nor to confidently say you have no weaknesses. The best way to handle this question is to mention personal weaknesses that are outside the job or a professional weakness that you have already improved upon. For example,

“I have a real weakness for chocolate that tends to go right to my waist! I’m watching my calories carefully these days!” or “I’ve never been good with accounting. I’m glad this job doesn’t involve accounting.” Or “I have a tendency to take on too much on my own. I am working on this by delegating more.”

Q. What type of decisions do you have difficulty making?

Show that you are generally decisive but mention that there are situations that give you time to pause or you are learning how to better make decisions. For example,

“I sometimes have difficulty choosing between two equally good ideas.” or “I used to have difficulty saying ‘no’ to people until I learned to better set priorities.”

Q. What is your biggest failure?

Focus on something outside your work or something that happened on the job that you later fixed. Do not admit to any personal quality that might hamper job performance, such as procrastination, laziness or lack of concentration. Choose something that will not reflect badly on your ability to perform in the given position, such as one that took place early in your career. For example,

Q. What are the major reasons for your success?

This is not the time to become extremely self-centered and arrogant. Keep in mind that employers are often looking for team players rather than Lone Rangers. A good response to this question may relate to a mentor/and or philosophy of work or the people you work with. Also, use this question as an opportunity to inquire about an appropriate “fit for success” with this company. For example,

“Many years ago I learned an important lesson from My Father, who was my first supervisor and really became my most important mentor. He told me his secret to success was to ‘Look at each day as a new opportunity to be your very best. Set high goals, be honest, never say no, and work with people who share your passion for doing their best.’ I’ve always remembered that advice and try to live it every day. I am very self motivated, determined and honest. I really love what I do and I try to surround myself with people who share similar passions. I thrive on this type of environment.”

Q. We’re considering two other candidates for this position. Why should we hire you rather than someone else?

Do not be distracted by the mention of two other candidates, you don’t know anything about them and they could be fictitious. Focus on what strengths you bring to the table. These should be consistent with the four things most employers are looking for in candidates during the job interview: competence, professionalism, enthusiasm, and likability. Remember, they are looking for chemistry between you and them. Be prepared to summarize in 60 seconds why you are the best candidate for the job. Also, let the employer know you want the job and you will enjoy working with them. A lack of interest in the job may indicate a lack of enthusiasm for the job and them.

Q. How do you spend your free time?

This question may have several purposes. The interviewer may be just curious about your personal life without getting into illegal questions. He may also want to know how well rounded you are in your personal and professional lives. Focus on some of the standard hobbies or activities that most people engage in: reading, music, gardening, or cooking.

Q. Why do you want to work in this industry?

Tell a story about how you first became interested in this type of work. Point out any similarities between the job you’re interviewing for and your current or most recent job. Provide proof that you aren’t simply shopping in this interview. Make your passions for you work a theme that you allude to continually throughout the interview.

“I’ve always wanted to work in an industry that makes tools. One of my hobbies is home-improvement projects, so I’ve collected a number of saws manufactured by your company. I could be an accountant anywhere, but I’d rather work for a company whose products I trust.”

Q. How do you stay current?

Demonstrate natural interest in the industry or career field by describing publications or trade associations that are compatible with your goal.

“I pore over the Wall Street Journal, the Times, Institutional Investor, and several mutual fund newsletters. And I have a number of friends who are analysts.”

Q. Why do you think this industry would sustain your interest in the long haul?

What expectations or projects do you have for the business that would enable you to grow without necessarily advancing? What excites you about the business? What proof can you offer that your interest has already come from a deep curiosity-perhaps going back at least a few years-rather than a current whim you’ll outgrow?

“The technology in the industry is changing so rapidly that I see lots of room for job enhancement regardless of promotions. I’m particularly interested in the many applications for multimedia as a training tool.”

Q. Where do you want to be in five years?

Don’t give specific time frames or job titles. Talk about what you enjoy, skills that are natural to you, realistic problems or opportunities you’d expect in your chosen field or industry, and what you hope to learn from those experiences. You shouldn’t discuss your goals in a fields or industry unrelated to the job you’re applying for. This may sound obvious, but too many candidates make this mistake, unwittingly demonstrating a real lack of interest in their current field or industry. Needless to say, such a gaffe will immediately eliminate you from further consideration.

“I’d like to have the opportunity to work in a plant as well as at the home office. I also hope to develop my management skills, perhaps by managing a small staff.”

Q. Describe your ideal career.

Talk about what you enjoy, skills that are natural to you, realistic problems or opportunities you’d expect in this particular job or industry, and what you hope to learn from those experiences. Avoid mentioning specific time frames or job titles.

(Link:How to Give Best Answers To Tough Interview Questions- Part-1 by CA Sandeep Kanoi, Abhishek Jain)

From India, Bangalore
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