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Interview: Meeting Of Two Unprepared People To Create A Disaster

Having arranged 1000s of candidate Interviews for dozens of organizations; I have come to a conclusion that definition of an interview should be “meeting of two unprepared people to create disaster’’.

In most cases, candidates go for an interview unprepared. They don’t find out about the employer, they don’t read on the internet, they don’t visit employer’s website, they don’t go through the job description carefully and they don’t care to find out about who is going to interview them. Additionally, they don’t brush up on what’s mentioned on their own resume. A candidate should ideally find out all of the above information, get prepared for the interview and maybe do a mock interview with their friends/colleagues.

Add to this, the interview panels or Hiring Managers also don’t do any preparation before conducting the interview. They don’t go through the profile of the candidate and they don’t prepare any specific questions that they are going to ask the candidate based on the information mentioned in the resume of the candidate.

Ideally, a candidate should know enough about the employer and the job so that they are able to strike a conversation /dialogue with the interview panel about the organization and the job. Instead, interviews end up with interview panels asking ‘tell me about you’, ‘tell me what experience you have on Java/.NET/Sales’ and interviews are seldom a dialogue between the interview panel and candidate.

If candidates do their preparation beforehand, they can have questions about where the organization is moving, how will the job in question shape up for the candidate and if they have any doubts with respect to the job. Candidates could also strike a conversation about the background of the interview panel based on pre-interview preparation and understand from the interview panel about what’s keeping them stick to the organization.

Likewise, if interview panels do their preparation, they can ask specific questions with respect to candidates experience, projects, awards, achievements and how candidates went on to achieve something during their previous stints.

Over 90% of the times, when interview panels ask the question- do you have any questions for me? The answer is NO. How will an interview panel determine the overall attributes of the candidates if the question and answers are only related to experience on specific skills, candidates background about where their home town is, who all are there in their family and what qualifications they have.

Hence, the outcome of the interview is largely dependent on questions and answers that are carried out in the interview not based on actual competence and attributes that the candidate may have. A humble request to all those interviewers and candidates to do a detailed preparation before getting into a room to go through those interviews.

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