Monday, June 30, 2008

Tips For HR Interview

Entering the room
Prior to the entering the door, adjust your attire so that it falls well.
Before entering enquire by saying, “May I come in sir/madam”.
If the door was closed before you entered, make sure you shut the door behind you softly.
Face the panel and confidently say ‘Good day sir/madam’.
If the members of the interview board want to shake hands, then offer a firm grip first maintaining eye contact and a smile.
Seek permission to sit down. If the interviewers are standing, wait for them to sit down first before sitting.
An alert interviewee would diffuse the tense situation with light-hearted humor and immediately set rapport with the interviewers.

Enthusiasm
The interviewer normally pays more attention if you display an enthusiasm in whatever you say.
This enthusiasm come across in the energetic way you put forward your ideas.
You should maintain a cheerful disposition throughout the interview, i.e. a pleasant countenance hold s the interviewers interest.

Humor
A little humor or wit thrown in the discussion occasionally enables the interviewers to look at the pleasant side of your personality,. If it does not come naturally do not contrive it.
By injecting humor in the situation doesn’t mean that you should keep telling jokes. It means to make a passing comment that, perhaps, makes the interviewer smile.

Eye contact
You must maintain eye contact with the panel, right through the interview. This shows your self-confidence and honesty.
Many interviewees while answering, tend to look away. This conveys you are concealing your own anxiety, fear and lack of confidence.
Maintaining an eye contact is a difficult process. As the circumstances in an interview are different, the value of eye contact is tremendous in making a personal impact.

Be natural
Many interviewees adopt a stance which is not their natural self.
It is amusing for interviewers when a candidate launches into an accent which he or she cannot sustain consistently through the interview or adopt mannerisms that are inconsistent with his/her personality.
Interviewers appreciate a natural person rather than an actor.
It is best for you to talk in natural manner because then you appear genuine.

Questions To Ask The HR

What kinds of assignments might I expect the first six months on the job?
How often are performance reviews given?
Please describe the duties of the job for me.
What products (or services) are in the development stage now?
Do you have plans for expansion?
What are your growth projections for next year?
Have you cut your staff in the last three years?
Are salary adjustments geared to the cost of living or job performance?
Does your company encourage further education?
How do you feel about creativity and individuality?
Do you offer flextime?
What is the usual promotional time frame?
Does your company offer either single or dual career-track programs?
What do you like best about your job/company?
Once the probation period is completed, how much authority will I have over decisions?
Has there been much turnover in this job area?
Do you fill positions from the outside or promote from within first?
Is your company environmentally conscious? In what ways?
In what ways is a career with your company better than one with your competitors?
Is this a new position or am I replacing someone?
What is the largest single problem facing your staff (department) now?
May I talk with the last person who held this position?
What qualities are you looking for in the candidate who fills this position?
What skills are especially important for someone in this position?
What characteristics do the achievers in this company seem to share?
Who was the last person that filled this position, what made them successful at it, where are they today, and how may I contact them?
Is there a lot of team/project work?
Will I have the opportunity to work on special projects?
Where does this position fit into the organizational structure?
How much travel, if any, is involved in this position?
What is the next course of action? When should I expect to hear from you or should I contact you?

What to Ask After the Offer

All job hunters are waiting for that call -- the one that says they've landed the job. But as eager as you may be to escape either your current job or the unemployment ranks, don't abdicate your power position once the offer comes in. Now it's your turn to sit in the interviewer's seat and ask the company and yourself some tough questions -- the answers to which could mean the difference between career bliss and disaster.

Will the actual work and job responsibilities provide gratification, fulfillment and challenge?
This question is often overlooked, because applicants get hung up on job titles, salary and benefits. Try to get a clear sense of what an actual day would be like. What will you spend the majority of your time doing? Is the work in line with your values? Will you likely learn this job quickly and become bored and unchallenged?

What are the boss's strengths and weaknesses?
This question can be tough to answer, and it's best saved for after the job offer has been extended. You'll want to get a good idea for your potential boss's management style. Speak to your potential boss as much as possible to get a feel for his personality and what you can live with. Does he micromanage? Will you get consistent feedback and reviews? Does he make small talk, or is every conversation strictly business?

How much change is in the works at your prospective company, and what kind?
Constant change at work can mean constant stress. Find out if there are any big changes coming, such as new processing systems or management, impending retirements or adoption of new procedures that still need to be ironed out. At the same time, remember that some of these transitions will have less effect on your position than others.

How many of my skills and experiences will I be able to use and learn?
Make sure your unique skills and talents will be used and that training and promotion are open in the future. When you decide to move on, you'll want to have a new crop of experiences to sell to your next employer. Your goal is to perform well at work while constantly growing and learning.

How many people have held the position in the past several years?
Knowing how many people have been in your job and why they left can offer you great insights. You'll want to know if they were promoted or quit altogether. A steady stream of resignations may be a sign you could be reentering the job market soon.

While many of the reasons positions eventually become unfulfilling are unavoidable, such as hitting a plateau after repeatedly performing the same duties, job seekers should consider the ways a new position will advance them

Why are you leaving (or did you leave) this position ?

(If you have a job presently tell the hr)

If you’re not yet 100% committed to leaving your present post, don’t be afraid to say so. Since you have a job, you are in a stronger position than someone who does not. But don’t be coy either. State honestly what you’d be hoping to find in a new spot. Of course, as stated often before, you answer will all the stronger if you have already uncovered what this position is all about and you match your desires to it.

(If you do not presently have a job tell the hr.)

Never lie about having been fired. It’s unethical – and too easily checked. But do try to deflect the reason from you personally. If your firing was the result of a takeover, merger, division wide layoff, etc., so much the better.

But you should also do something totally unnatural that will demonstrate consummate professionalism. Even if it hurts , describe your own firing – candidly, succinctly and without a trace of bitterness – from the company’s point-of-view, indicating that you could understand why it happened and you might have made the same decision yourself.

Your stature will rise immensely and, most important of all, you will show you are healed from the wounds inflicted by the firing. You will enhance your image as first-class management material and stand head and shoulders above the legions of firing victims who, at the slightest provocation, zip open their shirts to expose their battle scars and decry the unfairness of it all.

For all prior positions:

Make sure you’ve prepared a brief reason for leaving. Best reasons: more money, opportunity, responsibility or growth.

Tell me about something you did – or failed to do – that you now feel a little ashamed of ?

As with faults and weaknesses, never confess a regret. But don’t seem as if you’re stonewalling either.

Best strategy: Say you harbor no regrets, then add a principle or habit you practice regularly for healthy human relations.

Example: Pause for reflection, as if the question never occurred to you. Then say to hr, “You know, I really can’t think of anything.” (Pause again, then add): “I would add that as a general management principle, I’ve found that the best way to avoid regrets is to avoid causing them in the first place. I practice one habit that helps me a great deal in this regard. At the end of each day, I mentally review the day’s events and conversations to take a second look at the people and developments I’m involved with and do a double check of what they’re likely to be feeling. Sometimes I’ll see things that do need more follow-up, whether a pat on the back, or maybe a five minute chat in someone’s office to make sure we’re clear on things…whatever.”

“I also like to make each person feel like a member of an elite team, like the Boston Celtics or LA Lakers in their prime. I’ve found that if you let each team member know you expect excellence in their performance…if you work hard to set an example yourself…and if you let people know you appreciate and respect their feelings, you wind up with a highly motivated group, a team that’s having fun at work because they’re striving for excellence rather than brooding over slights or regrets.”

What are your greatest strengths ?

You know that your key strategy is to first uncover your interviewer's greatest wants and needs before you answer questions. And from Question 1, you know how to do this.

Prior to any interview, you should have a list mentally prepared of your greatest strengths. You should also have, a specific example or two, which illustrates each strength, an example chosen from your most recent and most impressive achievements.

You should, have this list of your greatest strengths and corresponding examples from your achievements so well committed to memory that you can recite them cold after being shaken awake at 2:30AM.

Then, once you uncover your interviewer's greatest wants and needs, you can choose those achievements from your list that best match up.

As a general guideline, the 10 most desirable traits that all employers love to see in their employees are:

A proven track record as an achiever...especially if your achievements match up with the employer's greatest wants and needs.

Intelligence...management "savvy".

Honesty...integrity...a decent human being.

Good fit with corporate culture...someone to feel comfortable with...a team player who meshes well with interviewer's team.

Likeability...positive attitude...sense of humor.

Good communication skills.

Dedication...willingness to walk the extra mile to achieve excellence.

Definiteness of purpose...clear goals.

Enthusiasm...high level of motivation.

Confident...healthy...a leader.

Tell me about yourself ?

Start with the present and tell why you are well qualified for the position. Remember that the key to all successful interviewing is to match your qualifications to what the interviewer is looking for. In other words you must sell what the buyer is buying. This is the single most important strategy in job hunting.

So, before you answer this or any question it's imperative that you try to uncover your interviewer's greatest need, want, problem or goal.

To do so, make you take these two steps:
Do all the homework you can before the hr interview to uncover this person's wants and needs (not the generalized needs of the industry or company)

As early as you can in the interview, ask for a more complete description of what the position entails. You might say: “I have a number of accomplishments I'd like to tell you about, but I want to make the best use of our time together and talk directly to your needs. To help me do, that, could you tell me more about the most important priorities of this position? All I know is what I (heard from the recruiter, read in the classified ad, etc.)”

Then, ALWAYS follow-up with a second and possibly, third question, to draw out his needs even more. Surprisingly, it's usually this second or third question that unearths what the interviewer is most looking for.

You might ask simply, "And in addition to that?..." or, "Is there anything else you see as essential to success in this position?:

This process will not feel easy or natural at first, because it is easier simply to answer questions, but only if you uncover the employer's wants and needs will your answers make the most sense. Practice asking these key questions before giving your answers, the process will feel more natural and you will be light years ahead of the other job candidates you're competing with.

After uncovering what the employer is looking for, describe why the needs of this job bear striking parallels to tasks you've succeeded at before. Be sure to illustrate with specific examples of your responsibilities and especially your achievements, all of which are geared to present yourself as a perfect match for the needs he has just described.