The first job is a momentous and memorable event in one’s life. Tons of preparation and scores of interviews later, one steps out of college and moves into the adult world of work. I believe any challenge becomes easier to face with the right preparation and correct information. How many times have we exclaimed in realisation, “I wish someone had told me that before!” Students who have lived through carefree college days find hard to project professional etiquette during their campus interviews. And given the meagre scope of preparing a student for professional life in our academics, there is enough and more to be learnt.
Here are 10 quick and useful tips for students who are at the threshold of their professional life. These little things are often ignored but make a great impact. God is in the details so we better watch out for them
1. Enunciate your name. I cant remember the number of times I’ve had to ask a candidate to say his or her name again since I did not get it the first time
2. Don’t hold a pen in your hand during an interview. It’s distracting to the interviewer and can also be construed as a sign of nervousness
3. Use hand gestures. Don’t leave your hands limp on your lap for the entire duration of the interview. Hand gestures add animation and confidence to your responses
4. Maintain eye contact. You may look away for a second while thinking of what to say but your eyes need to promptly come back the panel. The entire panel. Don’t just look at the panelist who asked the question.
5. Make a professional email id for placement interviews and job applications (LINK) ids like jags.smart06187991 looks highly unprofessional.
6. Project energy and passion. That’s the only way to convince an interviewer how much you want to do something in life.
7. Explain the names of festivals and societies you’ve been a part of – during the interview and in your resume. Just names wouldn’t help the interviewer know how one thing is different from the other.
8. During a recent stint with a university, I realised how unaware students were of corporate etiquette despite having done internships in reputed firms. So, really observe the work place and the culture around you when you get the opportunity to do that.
9. I know this last two are language tips but I really must put this down because it’s such a common error in Indian English. Especially during introductions:
I belong to/from (the name of the city)
One doesn’t belong to any city since any physical place doesn’t own us. The right way to say it should be:
I am from (name of the city)
10. Another pet peeve I have that’s grating on my ears (?) is the use of “Basically” when it has no use.
I am “basically from Haryana
I am “basically” an engineer
I don’t know what people mean when they say this but basically what I am trying to say is stop using “basically” unnecessarily and do your language a favour.
Details are very important in forming the bigger, overall opinion of a person. Make sure that you take care of the little things to leave a great impression on the interviewer.
Before you go, take a look at 6 blunders in your resume that can cost you your next job.