You spend four years studying hard, acing every exam, impressing every professor with your answers. You are good at the practicals. Your project is the best in class. Then on the day of the interview. You are ready. You have studied all the questions ever asked in the history of campus placement interviews.
Come D-day, your friend goes in first. She comes out. You ask her what questions she got. They were all 'general questions'. What are 'general questions', you ask? Oh, just general questions, you know. Hobbies, family, dreams.
Now you are nervous. What should I say are my hobbies? Is numismatic the right answer? Or music? What should I say about my family? What is my dream? You get nervous. Your stomach churns. Your knees feel week. As your name is called, your palms are cold. You hunch. You crawl in. You stand in front of a complete stranger. You limply shake the hand offered to you. You sit down. Everything is muddled. After ten minutes you realize you are not getting this job. Four years wasted? But why?
You are not alone.
Many, many talented graduates flunk interviews. It's not just your loss.. It's a loss for good companies too. Let's remedy this situation. Here are some tips to help you ace this test as well, just as you did all others.
1. Sit and chat: First off, look at the interview not as an evaluation but as a respectful conversation. You are trying to understand the company, the role and the culture of the workplace as much as the person in front of you is trying to understand your aspirations, abilities and attitude.
2. Low risk, high reward: Many of the most successful people in every industry did not have a great start to their career. Typical careers last at least forty years. That's enough time to allow you to miss one or two opportunities in the beginning. Look at the campus placement events as low risk, high reward games. If you win, great! If you miss, there's more waiting for you.
3. It's just chemistry: Nervous pangs have some simple antidotes. These might sound silly, but they help your body get over the fight-or-flight response evoked by any high anxiety situation. Hydrate. Drink water. Load up on sugar. Take deep breaths, using your stomach. Visualize a positive outcome.
Besides these, there are tons of other small tips which we will be happy to share with you. DM us on Twitter @campusquotient or on LinkedIn if you'd like to know them. But first, get your resume compiled. Rehearse a little. And take our best wishes for the placement season!
Let us know how it goes, ok?