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Introduction Here are some very popular interview questions and some possible ways to answer them.

Please remember that there cannot be just one answer to them. Your answers depend a lot on your particular circumstances. For instance, if the interviewer asks you to describe a challenging issue you had to face, your answer would depend on your particular background and experience. Therefore we have attempted to give you strategies to answer such questions, rather than specific answers. Remember, what you say makes only half of the story. How you say it-how positive and convincing you soundmatter a lot. Do not try to make up stories or exaggerate-it shows. If you are a fresher and cannot tell things from your work experience, you can cite instances of your leadership and skills from appropriate circumstances of your student life. Speak slowly and accompany what you say with moderate gestures. Maintain eye contact (this does not mean that you have to stare!) Here are the questions. 1. Can you tell us about a challenging situation at work you have encountered so far? How did you tackle it? Here the interviewer is looking at a number of factors- your problem solving skills, underlying attitudes, how you put across your ideas and how your previous experience may be useful to the present organization. When answering this question, keep the following in mind. What are the requirements of this organization or the job you have applied for? (You should have done some research about this before going to the interview). Now consider a situation, skill or experience from your past that would be relevant to the present company. This acts as a proof of your usefulness. It is a good idea to prepare such a list and have a few small stories ready for the interview. The word story does not mean that you have to cook up something- find something genuine from your past. Having such stories helps you in several ways- you have something to talk about, and you feel more confident. 2. What is your way of handling conflicts? Work related conflicts can be of several sub varieties. This could be conflicts between colleagues, conflicts between senior management and subordinates, conflicts with management rules, systems and procedures, conflicts with clients and customers as well as work versus personal life. The employer obviously expects you to look at things from their point of view. No employer likes an employee for whom they are second priority. You are valued for your ability to solve problems and not for bringing problems to the workplace. Therefore it is important to project a rational and realistic approach. You can say something like I am aware that conflicts are quite natural things- problems do crop up. My approach would be to look at what is causing the problem. This involves communicating with my team members or the other concerned parties. I will take in as many views as possible and go with the solution that appears to be the most rational to me. The interviewer is quite likely to ask you for some such instance from your previous work. In fact you can offer some such example even if you are not asked, as long as you keep it brief and relevant. If it illustrates your point, go for it. 3. In what ways do you think you are suited for this job? How can you contribute to this organization? This again is a question that requires preparation. Before appearing for the interview, assess your own qualification and skills. You should also evaluate the needs of the job and the company. You are qualified for the job to the extent that these two match. What are the most important skills this particular position requires? Make a list and then prepare a list of instances from your previous work experience that match these requirements.


For instance, a customer care executive needs good interpersonal skills, ability to look at problems rationally, and also the ability to deal with difficult people. Once you are clear about this, make a list of such instances where your good interpersonal skills and objectivity helped to solve a difficult problem at work. The next step is to analyze the specific requirements or problems the company is facing at the moment. Which of these can be helped by you? What is the value that you bring to the company? Once you have prepared specific answers to these questions, you are in a great position to answer this question. You can now say something like In my view, good interpersonal skills and objective problem analysis are the most important requirements in a customer care executive. I can tell you a few instances from my previous experience where I had demonstrated these skills and solved problems successfully (Give one or two brief stories here). I also see that you are planning to set up a separate unit to cater to corporate clients. With my previous experience in servicing corporate clients, this is an area I could be of specific use to you Incidentally, this question may be framed in another way. Why should we hire you? 4. I would like to hear about some experience from your work life so far. This is in fact another version of the previous question, but a more open-ended one. The interviewer wants to leave it up to you what part of your personality and work experience you wish to bring forth. However this is not an invitation to share your adventures and tales of heroism. You would do well to tell them some story from everyday work life, but one that shows your problem solving skills- things like how you conduct yourself at work and with difficult situations and people. Here you have more possibilities for showing something that you value in yourselfyour resourcefulness, your adherence to the rules or your ability to think out of the box. But do consider the organization you are interviewing for- its requirements as well as work culture. What you say should not give the impression of a misfit. 5. Give us an instance when you failed in spite of your best efforts? This is a very common situation for many people, but nevertheless a tricky question. You are likely to be embarrassed or worried that talking about a previous failure hampers your job prospects. This need not be the case. No one can be perfect. The employer here is most probably looking at your ability to deal with failure, learn from mistakes and also deal with other peoples mistakes. If you have such experiences, be prepared with one. Make sure that it is something that took place sometime back, was not too gigantic or drastic and something that offered you a chance to learn from and apply that learning thereafter. The net result should be to show you in a better light. 6. How would you evaluate your analytical skills? This is a fairly easy question if you have done your homework. It is important to be realistic about what skills you have and how you can substantiate your claims. You have to be prepared to talk about where or how you learned the skill and how you have applied it. However your inventory should be in tune with what the current job requires. This way the employer gets to know about the specific skills you can bring to the table. You can also take into account skills you learned from extracurricular activities, as these can also teach you great skills like teamwork. 7. Tell us about what you consider as your weak area- things you find difficult to manage. This is a multi-purpose question again. The interviewer wants to see how you react to tricky questions. They are also assessing your awareness of yourself and how you approach difficult situations and tasks. The trick is again being prepared with a story or two. It could be about addressing a meeting, voicing your disagreement about an -2-

important issue or being put in a situation you had no skills to handle. The story should show something valuable you have learned from the experience. It could also show a difficulty that you are preparing yourself to handle. I find that it is difficult for me to make a presentation to my seniors without adequate preparation. I usually have to prepare all the details and rehearse in advance. For example, there was this instance with my previous company where the project had to be temporarily discontinued due to some problems with the supplies. The company was very concerned, as this project was strategically very important to them. I was asked to brief the top management immediately. I was handling all the details, so I simply put together all the facts and brought them up in the meeting. It was easier than I thought, but whenever possible I still would like some time to prepare. 8. Tell us about your goals- both short term and long term. This is a very you-specific question. It all depends on you. In answering this question, you have to assess where you are at the moment in your career and where you want to go from there. Many people switch careers five or six times and some have two careers going on simultaneously. Be sure to connect your answer to the job you are interviewing for. It makes sense to steer clear of aims that cannot be achieved with this organization. For example, you may like a stint abroad but the organization has no overseas connections. It is better not to mention this in the interview. This does not mean that you have to come up with things that you have no interest in. Research into the organization and the possibilities it offers and also consider your wishes. There is a good chance that you come up with something that connects the two. 9. Where do you see yourself in the next two/five/ten years? This is another version of the previous question. The interviewer is here assessing how realistic and adept you are in making short term and long term plans. They also want to see if your aims are in sync with the organizations. A sensible way to answer this is to relate it to your progress so far. I started working five years back as a customer care executive while I was still pursuing my graduate studies. Once my graduation was done, I went ahead for a part-time MBA. Meanwhile I was promoted on the job to the level of a team leader in the next company that I worked for. This was in recognition of my experience and added qualification. . I am a fairly quick learner on the job and I have also continued with my learning through training programs and workshops. I am not really looking at titles, but overall growth in tandem with my learning and contribution to the organization. Therefore I could say that at the end of this period I will have learned more and assumed a role of more responsibility where I can make more significant contributions to the organization. 10. Is there anything that would make us want to hire you, apart from what we have already asked you? This is your chance for you to present your key selling points. Remember that many qualified people would have interviewed for this job. What makes you stand out? What are your strengths that this organization may want to hire you? Perhaps you are good at making stories sound interesting? Maybe you genuinely enjoy helping people. Or you have a knack of holding kids attention to what you are saying. Think of which of these are useful in the job you are applying for. Also be prepared to substantiate your claims. A class overall scores went up at the end of the term you took over as teacher- a difficult child was integrated into the class- or some such evidence. Be sure to plan this out well in advance. You can also include this in your thank you letter after the interview. That would help to sum up your key skills in your request for the job. 11. What in your view are the key factors in good customer service? To answer this question, you need to step into the customers shoes. Keep aside the specific situation or problem. What do you expect as a customer? Now you are equipped to answer this question. You can say something like There are two important elements to customer service- respect and prompt action. You might come up with -3-

some other variant of this, so choose whatever sounds the most convincing to you. It would be great if you can cite one or two instances of exceptional customer care behavior where you were involved. 12. Tell us what you know about this organization. This question is an excellent opportunity to show that you have an active interest in the organization. For this you need to do prior research about the company and also relate it to the field of expertise you are offering the company. For instance, if you are applying for a marketing position, I am aware that you are one of the top five FMCG companies in India and that you are currently looking to expand your market into the Middle East. This area already has intense competition, however you have certain advantages like. This shows several things. For one, you have already gathered relevant information and you appreciate the companys position. It also shows that you are actively using your expertise to bring in solutions. 13. From your resume, we see that you have been in your current job only for six months. Why do you want to leave it so soon and join us? This is a tricky question. Be well prepared with a safe answer if you are in this position. The answer has to be closest to the truth while at the same time sounding a safe one. Your reasons could be any of these. The actual job was very different from how it was described to me while joining. The company changed its direction/ goals. My skills and talents were not being put to good use there. The company management changed and the new management brought in their own staff. The company went in for downsizing or reorganization. Whichever answer you might give, be prepared for a few follow up questions. Therefore it is important not to make up stories- who knows what kind of unexpected question the interviewer might throw at you! The fact is, this is a very common situation. Most interviewers of some experience have heard these stories before. They are not really interested in all your details- what they want to know is how dependable you are. Are you a job hopper? The employer evaluates the circumstances under which you went for this short term job. Did you take it up when you already had a job or did you join the job when you were unemployed? If you have held on to other jobs for longer and more reasonable durations, it is better to stress on that so that the employer sees this short term job as a one-off incident. You can even omit it from your resume. However you may not be able to omit the job from your resume if you are a young person who doesnt have much experience and even a six or four month stint makes up a good percent of your total work experience. 14. What are you looking to gain from this organization? This is another question where research makes all the difference. In other words the interviewer is asking what brings you job satisfaction. Find out some important things about the company, like the corporate structure, product base, recent happenings or current plans and the key figures in the management. Which of these appeal the most to you? In the past I have had several opportunities to work with some innovative launches. I understand that you are about to launch an e-learning portal to reach out to more students. I am very excited about this. With -4-

my experience in launching student interactive programs, I am positive of brining insights and contributions for this project. I am also very enthusiastic about the team you have already formed for this project. I feel that I have also a lot to learn from them... Working on new technology, doing path-breaking work, learning new skills, working with experts the company has on board, these are all sound lines to approach this question. 15. What for you are the most important factors of an employees responsibility towards the organization? These include constantly bringing your best abilities to do the work at hand, putting your time to productive use, being loyal to the company, being a good team player, valuing the work relationship, and being passionate about the products and services the company is offering. 16. Why do you want to leave your current job and join us? You may have to answer this question either in the companys application form or at the interview. Be ready with a good answer. You might say something like this: This company is known all over the country/world and I would like to work for you. Whenever possible, it is a good idea to come to a consensus with your current employer as to your reasons for leaving, as the new company might approach them to enquire about you. Again put the information you have gathered by research to good use. Your effort should be to show how your skills and talents match with the company. If you can impress on the interviewer that this is just the opportunity you have been looking for, great. Give several points as to how you can add value to the company. Do not give downgrade the previous employer if asked your reasons for leaving the job. This reflects badly on you. You should come across as a positive, and enthusiastic individual who can be of value to the organization for many years to come. Ideally, you should put across a sincere, long-term interest in the company- this creates the impression that you are not just job-hopping. 17. Tell us about what motivates you. This is something only you can frame an answer to. It is helpful to look into your past. What were the times and occasions when you were highly charged? When was the time when you were not motivated? Looking into these situations helps to bring forth a concrete answer. 18. What are the essential qualities that make a good team player? It is better to answer this question taking the work context. What is the overall environment of the organizationwhat kind of work does it do? Is the organization framework very strong? Is the work atmosphere informal? Are the teams permanent or temporary? A persons individual idea of a good team member might be different from what the organization needs. Your aim is to present yourself as a good team member who meets the specific parameters of the organization. A lot also depends on where you are in the structure- are you a new member, a team leader or in a support position? Consider all these factors before you answer this question. Also study what are the specific problems the company is facing in its team building and how you can contribute to solve them. You need to make yourself into a good fit into the team and ensure cooperation from others. 19. Why should we hire you for this position? The answer to this question must be ready in your mind even before you submit your resume and prepare the cover letter. Do your homework by researching into the organization and the job. What are the requirements. Next, take stock of your own skills, experiences and interests. Which of these are matching with what the company needs? In other words, how can you add value to the company? Now form a strategy as to how you will prove that you are suitable for the job. Have concrete examples of your contributions to the previous employers and show enthusiasm -5-

for the job you are interviewing for. Remember that you are at the interview to offer solutions to some specific problems/requirements of the organization. 20. What is your salary now? This is a tricky question. The good side is that you have come to a stage where the company is going to make an offer to you. This is a good opportunity to discuss salary. In case you are pressed to disclose your current salary, it is better to mention ranges or a total package rather than go for an exact figure. You can say something like the current package is on the higher side of five figures. Some employers might ask to see your salary slip or some such proof, therefore be sure not to lie. This punctures your credibility. It is better to show that you are willing to take a step back as an investment in this new career. This is an area where you should market yourself well. It is important to show why you like the job and how you are suited for it- the compensation is important, but not your first consideration. 21. What do you consider as a reasonable starting salary with us? Ideally you should stay away from talking about compensation till the company makes an offer. However this does not happen in many situations and the company tries to figure out your price tag, so to say. This question might be used as a filter, so you need to give a response. Research can help you here. How is the general pay rate for this job? Have you checked out other ads for similar jobs? Now consider your experience level and see if your experience matches this pay range. This can work as an indicator to calculate how much you can ask for. It is also important to present your estimate in the right manner. If you dont have all the relevant information about the job so that you can present a reasonable range, say it and ask for what you need to know. Before we can talk about salary, I would like to know how many people will be reporting to me and what their experience and skill levels are. It is also possible to ask in a straightforward manner how other people in the same position are paid in this organization. Try to get as much information as possible, and then present your quote in the form of a range. Based on the information I have got now, I feel that a range of to would be appropriate for this position. However I am quoting this outside of your standard benefits package. Peg this in such a way that there is some possibility of negotiation. 22. If you got a chance to get into a merry-go-round, what song would you like to play? What animal would you choose? This is one of those off-the-beaten-track questions. The first step towards answering this is not to feel embarrassed. This means just that the interviewer is creatively oriented. Moreover this question is very much appropriate if you are interviewing for a creatively oriented job like an advertising copy writer. Enjoy the situation and go with the flow. Try to give an answer that comes from within and reflects your real personality. Be ready to explain why you chose a particular song/tune or animal. An anecdote from your experience would be a good idea. If you cant come up with any such stories, at least give a song you have always liked and held a special meaning for you. A brief and interesting narration is what the interviewer is looking forward to. The same is true for the choice of animal. You can choose an animal you like and tell them why. It does not really matter which song or animal you chooseyour explanation of your choice is what makes all the difference. A Final Round of Tips Okay, so now we saw some popular interview questions and some ways to tackle them. Let us finish off this session with a few general tips that help you towards success in interviews. Here are the tips. -6-

Be punctual. Arrive at the venue at least 15 minutes before the appointed time. You can in fact arrive just in time, but it is always better to reach a little early to avoid last minute tensions. This also gives you some time to relax and collect yourself. Be courteous from the word go. This applies to the way you interact with the reception, other people who have come for the interview as well as the interview board itself. It is very common for the company to leave some of their material like in-house magazines in the lobby where you wait. Use your waiting time to read them. Go for a firm handshake. However this does not mean that you have to break bones! Firm and not hard is the word. Listen before you speak. It is very important to understand the question properly. Use appropriate and moderate body language. This makes you appear natural and shows interest. Do not hesitate to smile when needed. Also use nods and other non verbal feedback whenever needed. Get your queries about the next step clarified before you leave. Thank the interviewer before leaving. Send a thank- you letter or email after the interview as a follow up.

Research These There are the important aspects you need to research before appearing for an interview. These include the important products and services of the company, size (sales volumes, number of employees and turnover), geographical locations where the company has its presence, the organizational structure and major competitors. It is great if you can get to see the perspectives of the companys clients, suppliers and competition. Another major area is recent news about the company and news reports about events that affect the company 1. Describe a challenging work issue you had to face, and how you dealt with it? Consider what would be the requirements of the new job/organization and find something in your past that highlights a skill, experience or situation that might occur or be needed going forward. It is always a good idea to make lists in preparation for interviews: New job will need I can provide Proof/example For your proofs, list (for yourself) examples of when you used the skill, exhibited the characteristic or handled the problem. This will not only give you short stories to relate in an interview, it will also bolster your confidence and target your job search. 2. If you were on a merry-go-round, what song would be playing? If you were going to be an animal on the merry-go-round, what would you be? Congratulations! You have found the unusual interviewer asking a rare question. Dont feel stupid just feel like you have run into a very unusual situation. If you are interviewing for a creative position, then the question is most appropriate because the interviewer may be attempting to evaluate your creativity and your ability to deal with an offbeat question. have fun with it. Give the question your focused attention and go with your instincts. Be ready to say why you chose the tune you did. Perhaps tell a brief story that reminds you of merry go rounds in your own experience. Or if you are really clueless give a song that you have always liked, has real meaning for you or is important for whatever reason and attach it to the merry go round but refocus the question to he importance of the song and make it brief but interesting words tell but stories sell. As for the animal, give the animal that you want to be (even if you think the question is ridiculous and you really need this job) your total attention and focus. On the other hand, the person you are dealing with may not have a clue and just asked because he/she felt like it. We know one person who asks the question and feels it is meaningful. She is into Yoga and looks for the person to be thoughtful in response. We have never heard her say anyone was rejected because of the animal selected. 3. How do you handle conflict? On the job, there are many possible sources of conflict. Conflicts with: fellow employees management rules, procedures clients, customers demands of work vs. personal life, family The best way to approach a good answer is to look at if from the employers point of view they want to be your first priority and they want you to solve problems (not bring them any). I -7-






know everything cannot run smoothly at work all the time. When there is a conflict I usually try to determine the source of the problem and see if it can be solved. This might involve other members of the work team discussing the problem and offering possible solutions. I would then try to pick the solution which appears to have the best outcome and put it into action. A natural follow-up to this would be: Tell me when you solved a conflict at work. So, have a brief example a short story to illustrate your approach. Even if not asked, you can offer your story! If it proves your point and accentuates a skill needed for the position, go with it. In what way do you think you can contribute to our company? Preparing to answer this question requires a 2-step preparation: assessing your skills and researching the needs of the company. An integral part of skill assessment (looking at your own experience, education and talents) is to skill-match. Considering the job opening, what are the skills needed? Make a list of the requisite skills (in priority order) and then list concrete examples of your possession of the skill. For example: a sales representative would need good interpersonal skills, the ability to deal with difficult people. For proof of this skill, you could list experiences and examples of how you were successful in a difficult situation. These matched skills are your key selling points. Next, what appears to be the current problems at the organization, based upon your research? What are their needs that you can meet? In other words, given the specifics of the company, what value can you add? After these two steps, you are in a great position to come up with concrete examples of what you can offer the company. This question, by the way, is just another version of Why should we hire you?. In the interview, when asked this question, you could respond with: In my experience in sales, I know having the ability to deal effectively with all types of people is not merely a positive element it is an essential one. With your plans to expand into ____ market, a sales representative with a proven ability to meet with all types of people and to be able to assess and meet their immediate needs would be a great asset. In the past __ years, I have increased sales __ .. Tell me a story. Many interviewers like to hear stories or examples from your work life. So pick something that is more usual than not (not the day of a plant explosion and you saved 10 lives!) but a story that shows how you handle yourself, handle difficult people or situations. Can you think on your feet? Do you adhere to the rules? Consider the type of organization you are aiming at each has its own culture. The World Wrestling Federation entertainment culture is different than the American Bible Society and also different from Gear your stories to give the listener a feeling that you could fit in you could do the job here. Tell me about a time when you tried and failed? Has this ever happened to you? No one expects perfection actually, employers are more interested in your ability to cope, to learn from mistakes, and to deal with others who are less than perfect. If you have an example, certainly pick one that happened a while back, was not earth shattering in the results, and one which you learned and applied this knowledge recently. This is a version of damning with faint praise by picking an incident that was minor in scope but, since you are so wise and are always willing to learn, has taught you a valuable lesson. Tell us about your analytical skills. This should be easy if you have done a realistic skill inventory for yourself, listing what skills you do have and how you can offer proof of this skill (where you learned it, last used it). Working off your inventory, focus on various analytical skills and match them to the skills you feel are most important for the job you are considering. You can now give specific examples of skills you can offer. (Do not neglect skills obtained in extracurricular activities, such as volunteer work.) What are some of the things you find difficult to do? The interviewer is looking to determine how well you know yourself, how you react to difficult situations/tasks and credibility. Look back over your work experience for examples of challenges speaking in public at a meeting, disagreeing with a manager over an important issue, being asked to use a software program you have not had an opportunity to learn These stories should illustrate a lesson learned, a problem overcome or a weakness being dealt with. I always seem to need a day or two to prepare myself to give a presentation to department heads. When I know I have to give a report on my projects, I plan out all the details in advance and rehearse. One time, there was a problem with a supplier and I was asked to update senior management immediately. The supply chain was crucial to the completion of an important project we had been working on for 5 months -8-

and decisions had to be made based on the information I had to prepare and present on a moments notice. I gathered the information and presented it simply and in detail. It was much easier than I thought without the hours of concern and practice. The facts spoke for themselves. Since I understood the situation, I was able to make it clear to management and get a rapid decision. I still prefer advance notice but I know I can deliver when asked to. 9. What are your short and long term goals? No one can make goals for you. It comes down to where you are in your professional life and what you want to do. Most people have 5-6 careers in their working lifetimesome with 2 careers going at the same time (like us). The best advice is to be certain to relate your answers to the organization that interviews you. Do not make a point of having goals that cannot be realized there (I want to work in Paris. Organization is strictly domestic.) If you do your research into the organization, and into what you truly want to do in the future, you will be able to come up with reasonable responses. No one is going to come back to you in five years and chastise you for not meeting these goals! You will not be held to them it is only an interview and they are interested in how you see yourself (and they want to see you in the job.) 10. Where do you see yourself in five years? This is the interviewer trying to see how you are in making long range plans and if you have goals that mesh with the organizations. One way to answer this question is to look back on your accomplishments to date: I started out in my profession as a junior clerk while I completed my college studies during the evenings. Once I had my degree, I applied for a transfer to a more advanced position, citing my on-the-job training. This has been my pattern for my career with my past 2 employers. I learn quickly on the job and am willing to take classes and workshops to augment my experience. I have been able to assume greater responsibilities and add more value to the organization. I do not think in terms of titles I think more in terms of How can I solve this problem? Since this has been my career style to date, I do not imagine it to change. In five years, I feel I will have continued to learn, to grow into a position of more responsibility and will have made a significant contribution to the organization. 11. What can you add to what we have already asked you that should make us want to hire you? Think grocery shopping all those brands in the soap aisle begging for your attention. Each one comes with its own key selling points. Remember the comics, Superman? On TV, he sold himself stronger than a locomotive, faster than a speeding bullet, able to leap tall buildings in a single bound. What are your key selling points? Plan this out ahead of time for the next interview or include in a thank you letter for this past interview. Think a 1 minute infomercial about yourself. What are your core strengths? Is it communicating with children, being a mentor to other teachers, being able to keep topics current and interesting . Think of what is needed to be successful in the job and how you specifically meet those needsprovide examples. Increased reading scores by using Math scores jumped __% due to my Offer some proof from your past to support your claims. But it is your ability to assess the situation and analyze your potential contributions that will sell your candidacy. Do not think it too late send a strong thank you and include in your request for the job the key reasons why you are the best candidate. 12. What does customer service mean to you? Think of yourself as a customer what do you expect from salespeople regardless of the circumstances and/or the problem. An example may be Customer service is a two-piece reaction. Firstrespect; second problem solving. See if that makes sense and if you sound convincing when you do practice it. If you can give a brief story or two of what you have witnessed as extraordinary examples of customer service behavior. By using yourself as a focal point you will be able to enunciate clearly your understanding of customer service. 13. What do you know about our company? If you can relate your knowledge to the area that you would be involved in, it would show that already you have an active interest in the organization. For example, if you were interested in marketing, I understand that you are one of the top 10 companies in sales to Europe but are currently interested in expanding your market into Asia. Competition is keen in that area but you have an advantage in that you product offers features that others do not, such as .. It is not only showing that you have done the research but also that you like/know what you have learned about the company and have applied it to how you can add value in the position. -9-

14. Why do you want to leave this job after only four months? Well, why did you? What is the closest to the truth: 1. Job was not as it was described to me 2. Organization changed its focus/goals 3. Organization could not effectively use my talents/skills 4. Change in management wanted to bring in own staff 5. Downsizing, reorganization All of these will probably prompt a follow-up question. Do not fabricate but most interviewers have heard these stories before and really are not interested in all the gory details. (Note that this job need not be included on your resume since it was of such a short duration but may have to be included in a application form if it looks to account for all your time.) Circumstances also come to play did you leave your other job to take this 4 month job? or did you try it while already unemployed hoping for the best? If you were recruited to change jobs, there is a lot of room for exaggeration in a sales pitch, and many employees have been misled. If you have held other jobs for substantial periods and you took the other job in good faith, stress your past performance. You are not a capricious personjob hopping. You have skills to offer and want to put them into good use. 15. What do you wish to gain from our company? Excellent question! Research is the answer (know everyone is tired of hearing this but we feel this is one great way for applicants to make a difference in their candidacy). Determine some of the key elements in the corporate structure, product base, employees/management team or recent history. What appeals to you about working at this company? Go with what you know. In the past, I have had opportunities to work on new products being launched. I am very excited about your plans to start an entire new line of products. With my prior experience I know I can provide insights and make contributions immediately and I will also learn so much from the excellent team you have in place. Having done single products, I would love to be in on the give-and-take meetings planning the new line there is much I can offer but also much for me to learn. Finding something specific the opportunity to use a new technology, a new skill, to work with experts on their team are ways for you to find job satisfaction, which is another way of asking this question 16. What do you think the employees responsibilities are to the company? As an employee you have several responsibilities to your employer. They are as follows: to perform a good days work to be loyal to act as part of the team to value the relationship to earn the employers trust to grow with a passion for the product/service. 17. Why do you want to change jobs? When asked on an application, If presently employed, why do you wish to change positions, what do you put down. The reason I am changing positions because the company I am applying at is known nationwide I want to work for a company with their background and one that I can retire from. This same question is sometimes asked on interviews as well so it is important to have a good answer. Additionally, if you decide to leave your current employer, it is also wise to have consensus as to the reasons that you are leaving. It already sounds like you have positive reasons for wanting to work for the national companygo with that. Use your research to put forth several points about the company that you feel will be a great match (for the company) and suit your particular skills and experiences. Emphasize the fact that this opportunity to work for them is just what you have been looking for because .and then go into several ways you can add value to the organization. Remember, when asked why you left, do not downgrade in any way your prior/current employer leave the interviewer with the feeling that you have only been associated with winners! Do not go into the I can retire from this job aspect; it can have negative connotations. Present yourself as a vital, enthusiastic employee that can offer experience to their organization for many years to come. Note: If appropriate, point out that you are not just looking around but are sincerely interested in working for this particular company and that you are not a job-hopper but are interested in a long-term career move. - 10 -

18. What motivates you? Other than looking into your past experiences .times when you were motivated and times when you were not no one but you has this answer. Find concrete examples when you had to pull it all together and get motivated to get the job done; what does it for you? 19. What things make a good team member? Consider first the situational context of the question. What is the team environment of the organization that you are interviewingdo they have a strong, organized team-based work environment or is it based on informal authority and fluctuating teams? Ideally, you should have had an opportunity to research and ask some questions about the organization to determine how they operate (and if indeed you want to work in that environment.) Model your responses to the organization. Obviously, you are describing yourself = good team member. My ideas of what makes a good team member may be very different from yoursand from the organization. Also depends on where you are in the teamnew member, leader, support. How do you see yourself? How do you make yourself fit into a new team? How do you elicit cooperation from other team members? What do you think the organizations biggest problem is relative to teams and team-building? And, what solution could you provide? 20. Why do you feel we should hire you for this position? Before you submit a resume or draft a cover letter and certainly before you go to an interview you should do 2 things: Research the job and the organization. What do they need? What are the requirements for the position? What role does this job play in the overall goals of the organization? Research yourself. What skills and experiences and interests can you offer? How will you add value to the organization? How can you prove that you have the required skills and experience needed for the job? Do a skill matching exercise: The organization/job needs ..(skill/experience) and I have it because I did .. The organization needs .. and i can provide .. Be certain to have specific examples of how you have added value in the past and be enthusiastic on how you can add value to this organization. Do not forget the organization is looking to solve a problem and you are selling yourself as a solution. 21. Why do you want to change jobs? When asked on an application, If presently employed, why do you wish to change positions, what do you put down. The reason I am changing positions because the company I am applying at is known nationwide I want to work for a company with their background and one that I can retire from. This same question is sometimes asked on interviews as well so it is important to have a good answer. Additionally, if you decide to leave your current employer, it is also wise to have consensus as to the reasons that you are leaving. It already sounds like you have positive reasons for wanting to work for the national companygo with that. Use your research to put forth several points about the company that you feel will be a great match (for the company) and suit your particular skills and experiences. Emphasize the fact that this opportunity to work for them is just what you have been looking for because .and then go into several ways you can add value to the organization. Remember, when asked why you left, do not downgrade in any way your prior/current employer leave the interviewer with the feeling that you have only been associated with winners! Do not go into the I can retire from this job aspect; it can have negative connotations. Present yourself as a vital, enthusiastic employee that can offer experience to their organization for many years to come. Note: If appropriate, point out that you are not just looking around but are sincerely interested in working for this particular company and that you are not a job-hopper but are interested in a long-term career move. 22. I will need to take a step back in salary. I dont know how to handle the question What is your current salary? If you have proceeded along interviews to the point when an offer is going to be made, that is the proper time to discuss salary. Otherwise, if pressed to disclose salary, talk in term of ranges and a compensation package. Present compensation package is high five figures gives a lot of leeway yet is not in error. It is rare but some employers ask for W-2 forms or last salary stub to verify salary. You do not want to get caught in a lie (credibility is very important) so being up-front about willing to take a step back in order to invest in a new career can be impressive to an employer. Sharpen your sales skills point out all the reasons why you are suited for the job, why you are making the move to a new career and why you want to work there. Compensation is a necessity but not your prime motivator. - 11 -

23. What do you expect your starting salary to be? Discussions of salaries and compensation should not be held until an offer is made. With that said, lets look into the real world when this is not the case most of the time. Employers are shopping, trying to guess your price tag. This is one of those screening questions used to either screen in or screen out so a response is important. Have you done your homework? What is the price for this job in the marketplace? Have you checked out classified ads or online ads for similar positions? Are you within the range, given your level of experience? Pegging yourself mentally to the right price is the first step. Second step is sharing this information correctly. Do you have enough information about this new job to determine your salary? If not state it and ask for the information that is needed. Before I can discuss salary, I would like to know the reporting requirements and how many people I would be supervising. In addition, what are the skill levels and experience of my staff? You can also ask What are others in similar positions being paid? When you can no longer stall or seek additional information Based on what you have told me and exclusive of other compensation elements I feel that the position would warrant a salary range of $_______ to $___________ Name a range such as $40,000 to $45,000 to give both sides some wiggle room and allow for some give-and-take when benefits and other compensation is considered. If you know what you are willing to accept as salary and what the market pays, using a salary range should permit you to be negotiable. 24. What can you add to what we have already asked you that should make us want to hire you? Think grocery shopping all those brands in the soap aisle begging for your attention. Each one comes with its own key selling points. Remember the comics, Superman? On TV, he sold himself stronger than a locomotive, faster than a speeding bullet, able to leap tall buildings in a single bound. What are your key selling points? Plan this out ahead of time for the next interview or include in a thank you letter for this past interview. Think a 1 minute infomercial about yourself. What are your core strengths? Is it communicating with children, being a mentor to other teachers, being able to keep topics current and interesting . Think of what is needed to be successful in the job and how you specifically meet those needsprovide examples. Increased reading scores by using Math scores jumped __% due to my Offer some proof from your past to support your claims. But it is your ability to assess the situation and analyze your potential contributions that will sell your candidacy. Do not think it too late send a strong thank you and include in your request for the job the key reasons why you are the best candidate. 25. 10 Steps to a Successful Interview 1. Arrive on time. 2. Introduce yourself in a courteous manner. 3. Read company materials while you wait. 4. Have a firm handshake. 5. Listen. 6. Use body language to show interest. 7. Smile, nod, give nonverbal feedback to the interviewer. 8. Ask about the next step in the process. 9. Thank the interviewer. 10. Write a thank-you letter to anyone you have spoken to. 26. Key people in the organization Major products or services Size in terms of sales and employees Locations other than your community Organizational structure of the company Major competitors View of the company by clients, suppliers, and competition Latest news reports on the company or on local or national news that affects the company. .

Technical Support Interview revolves around all the technical questions related to computer systems and their networks and are asked in the technical support interview. This job is in the category of Information & technology - 12 -

jobs. The job may involve handling the queries on site or it may be done over the phone where technical support is provided by the professionals to the people sitting somewhere else. Technical support officers are also called desk support officers and computer technicians. Technical support interview questions or desktop support interview questions will depend upon the platform on which you are going to work on like it can be Unix, windows, Linux etc. Therefore questions related to programming, Novell (Server), Novell (Client), Networking, Cabling, Telecom, WAN, LAN and Unix are part of the interview. So while preparing for the interview you will have to work on your area of specialization. 1. Basic Technical Support Interview Questions First of all few basic interview questions are asked that can be 2. Tell me about yourself. 3. What are your qualifications? 4. What was your last job? Describe your duties and work. 5. Why you want to change your present job? 6. What do you know about this company or Why do you want to work here? 7. What are your strong and weak points? 8. What is your salary expectation? Once you are through with these basic question which are asked in every interview then you must get ready for the technical support interview questions that are asked by the manager or your senior. The question vary according to the position but for the entry level these questions are related to problem solving knowledge and for the managerial candidates the technical support questions revolve around managing team and network. 9. Technical Support Interview Questions 1. Explain your technical support experience. 2. Was your previous job was call based or on site? 3. Tell me your worst customer experience and what had you done in that case? 4. Explain the computer problem that you have solved and proud of solving it. 5. How many calls did you take in a day? 6. Explain the installing and configuring of computer system. 7. What is an Ethernet switch ? 8. What is a jabber? 9. Explain the difference between IPX and IP. 10. Explain tip and ring. 11. Tell me something about ARD circuit. 12. What is ODS? 13. What is a 110 block? 14. Difference between a parallel and serial cable 15. Write a script to list all the differences between two directories. 16. What is a PDC? 10. Technical Support Job Description Technical support job is related to the activities of installing and configuring computers. In this job maintenance and monitoring of the computers and networks is also done along with solving the troubleshooting and networking problems. Technical support officer also requires to identify and replace the parts of the computers that are hampering the working. Setting up new users, testing and evaluating new technologies, running applications to support users and support system is also done by the professionals in technical support job. 1. Tell me about your tech support experience. 2. About how many calls did you answer on average in a day? 3. What procedures did you follow when you received a call? - 13 -

4. What percentage of all calls were you able to answer without escalation? 5. How long were you prepared to work on a call before escalating it? 6. What percentage of every 8 hour shift were you either on the phone or available to take a call? 7. Would you say there was much diversity in the type of calls you received? 8. How did you like working third shift? 9. What percentage of your cases needed 2 or more calls to clear the same issue? 10. How did you deal with really upset customers? 11. How many angry customers would you refer to your supervisor in a week? 12. How do you feel about going on the road from time to time? 13. Could you deliver a training class if necessary? 14. How would you deal with a disruptive student? 15. What if he didnt realize he was a disruptive student? 16. What sort of ramp-up time do you think you need to be fully productive? 17. What are you expecting from this job? 18. Where do you see yourself being in 2 years? 19. Do you have any questions? Why do you want a career in the BPO sector? Telling your interviewer that you need the money or that you love the fast-and -easy BPO culture is a complete no no. There are other ways of convincing your employer to hire you. Think about personality traits that make you suitable for this job. On the other hand, you should have correct information about the growth rate and the size of the BPO industry. Quoting these make you look serious, knowledgeable and professional. You can come up with an answer like -I would like to pursue a job in this sector since this is an industry that is growing very fast. According to this years Financial Times Report on the Indian Industry, the size of the BPO industry is around $ XX billion and it is growing at a rate of XX per cent. Not only this, I also feel that I have a personality that is well suited to this industry, since I love interacting with people and have great communication skills. I fell that I can utilize my potential to maximum in this industry while boosting and enhancing my skills and expertise at the same time. Moreover, it is a steady and a constant job. I fell that I will definitely prove to be an asset for any company as I can easily adapt to any ambience and make sure that it does not hinder my creative skills and abilities. I can easily work in a team. Will you be comfortable working in different shifts? Yes, I can. I might have difficulties at the beginning, but I am sure that my body will easily adjust to working at odd hours. Staying up throughout the nights is not a problem for me. You can take this as an opportunity to talk about how well suited for the job you are by saying things like

I am enthusiastic and energetic about my work. I am very proficient and hard working. I can work efficiently and with the same amount of zeal and energy at any time in the day. I can strive hard to achieve my goals and at the same time manage other aspects of the job.

One thing to keep in mind while praising yourself is to avoid the use of superlatives like extremely hardworking, the best at xyz, the most efficient etcetra. Selling yourself is good, but the subtler the trumpeting, the better it is. Are you confident of your communicative skills in convincing people? - 14 -

Point number oneplease do not answer in negative to this questioneven if you are an absolute failure at convincing people to do anything. The answer has to beYes, I think I can easily convince people. Then tell them how you convince people. Reading up on this aspect will help not only frame a good response to this question, but will also help you in doing your job better. Which one do you think web or voice suits your qualifications better?

If you are inclined towards one aspect, either web or voice, then there is no harm in telling your employer about your preference. They generally have enough vacancies in both and will hire you if you are good, irrespective of what you say here. Just make sure that you have a good reason for choosing one over the other.

There are no standard questions or answers. The questions totally depend on the job you are going for. What I was asked on my first tech support job interview were easy, when I worked my second job they were super basic, however, I am now working a Microsoft job and the questions were pretty hard. My first job asked about how I handle customers, what would I do in this situation, describe a major goal I had, and so forth, yet at my current job, I was not asked any of those questions. ALL of them were technical. Research the job first. Chances are good that whatever the job is about, those will be some of the questions. You will probably be asked about how you deal with upset customers, problems with coworkers, why should we hire you (I HATE that question), and whatever else that is not technical. The higher up the ladder you go, the more technical the questions usually are. An entry level job might ask questions like: A computer is running slow, how would you speed it up? How would you install video drivers? Describe a time you had a very upset customer and what you did to control the situation and how did you resolve it? Higher level job interview questions might be: How many network layers are there, and what are they? What is the maximum signal distance on a cat 5 cable? What are some software ports and what they are for? (such as http, icmp, dns, etc)

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