Interview secrets revealed

Ever wondered just which part of the job interviews you give are the most relevant? What exactly ARE you being judged on? And what, exactly, qualifies as a faux pas, given that different individuals react differently to the same things? Cosmo went behind the jobsearch scene and asked five bosses-who inter view all the time for their companies – just what they judge potential employees on!

Suvarna Chakravarty


During the interview, our focus moves from qualifications to temperament-we look out for a person who can sustain himself/herself under pressure. So much of modern work life is about dealing with pressure, after all! We deliberately ask difficult questions to get a sense of how they’ll hold their ground. Anyone who keeps their nerve through that is at least likely to have a better handle on stress and will, hopefully, bring at least 50% of that ability to the workplace.

Payal Puri

Editor, Cosmopolitan

I look for people with a passion for what they do and who aren’t scared to show it. I like interviewees who aren’t afraid to ask questions about the work; when asked an opinion on something, honesty works over political correctness. If they can’t say anything about the magazine beyond ‘I love it’, that’s worrying-you can’t love everything in it! You should be able to detail what you don’t like and why, too. Give an honest opinion, positive, or negative; it’s the rationality of the answer that counts. And I think I speak for interviewees everywhere when I say ditch the cliches-like “I’m looking to widen my horizons” are so yesterday. If you have nothing original to say, don’t say it!

Souvik Ghosh

Marketing Manager, Specialities, Dupont

First impressions-when someone first walks in-are of course on overall presentability. Marketing is a peoplefunction; you meet clients and represent a company, and you have to make a positive impression. The other thing we look for is the ability to come up with creative solutions-it could be examples from a previous job or in any aspect of life. Good negotiation skills, references, and prior experience also speak for a lot. For freshers, we go through the process of group discussions and also judge basis their analysis of case studies.

Renuka Chatterjee

Chief Editor, Westland Ltd.

Professional qualifications are important, but it’s not necessary to have a first division in English Lit-it’s more important to have a genuine love of books and the willingness to learn. And above all this, I’d look for an ability to get along with people; a person who isn’t into politics or gossip, someone who can roll up their sleeves and work! Of course, it’s not possible to tell all this over one or two meetings, so one goes by instinct and gut feel, and previous references where possible.

Rahul Kanwal

Executive Editor, Headlines Today

The most important thing when hiring for TV, is to determine how hungry the person is to achieve success. Nobody starts with strong technical skills or great contacts. Everyone ends up learning on the job. It’s those who have the strongest desire to succeed, who make the effort to pick up the skills that eventually make them successful. So we try and find candidates who have a strong journalistic fire burning in their belly. Since TV requires strong communication skills, we also lay a lot of emphasis on a person’s ease with language.

Reproduced From Cosmopolitan. 2010. LMIL. All rights reserved.

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