Most students focus on the written test to make it to a b-school. Many of them actually ace the test but are not able to get through the PI round. It is the PI round which differentiates one from the other and determines which institute you land at.
Below are a few tips to ace the personal interview round:
- Good English speaking skills
If one has good English speaking skills, it serves as a differentiator among the rest of the competitors. While you may have very solid content in all your answers, if you are not able to put them across in the right manner, you are not going to get noticed. Using the right phrases that create an impact on the listener get you those important brownie points.
One of the biggest deal breakers for you in an interview could be dishonesty or portraying a picture of yourself that is too good to be true. Interviewers are able to see through lies very easily. Therefore, it becomes very important to present everything with as much honesty as possible. I cannot stress enough on the importance of this trait. Recently, in a presentation, in front of 8 panellists, I outrightly denied taking credit for things that they thought I had worked for. This helped me gain their trust and it made a good impression on the panel.While some people are very good at lying/ faking stories in an interview, getting caught can make the same interview one of the worst experiences of one’s life. Also, being honest requires less effort as you do not have to cover one story with another.
- Being Open:
In an interview, there are many points when an interviewer might try to push you into thinking from another perspective. It is important to understand what the interviewer is expecting out of you and being able to respond along those lines. Being confirmed to one’s own views on social, political, business, technical and other issues also portrays a negative image.Be open to think from all perspectives and therefore present your final conclusion on any topic under discussion. This also portrays that you have strong analytical skills and you have a coherent line of thinking.
- Invest time in dressing up smartly
If you have invested time in dressing up and grooming yourself, then your first move has been successful towards cracking the interview. While having unkempt hair, a rugged stubble and a folded sleeve may get you a right swipe on Tinder, it is a strict no in an interview situation. Being dressed up smartly also gives you a little boost and confidence that might prove helpful on the day that matters.
- Be attentive
During my first interview, I made this mistake of answering something completely unrelated to what was asked of me. The interviewer had to rephrase the question and I had to start thinking again. This gave a signal to the interviewer that I had not been attentive enough and I was caught nervous after this incident.Always answer to what is asked. Also, a point to note is, not to speak while the interviewer is speaking. Listen carefully to what the interviewer asks, take a pause and then respond.
- Be mindful of every move you make
Have all your documents ready and arranged in ascending order in your folder so that you do not come across as unorganized when a panellist asks you for your certificates.Pay conscious attention to your posture. It is impossible to fix your slouched shoulders in the last one week. So, pay conscious attention to where your hands, eyes and feet are.
And last, but the most important, have a welcoming smile on your face.