When you step before an interview panel, the million dollar question in your mind should be, “what is the prospective employer looking for during the job interview?”
This is neither easy for the interviewers too. It is human nature to have great expectations and a frame of mind that suits ones’ interests. So the interviewers will have different expectations on a candidate during a job interview. Below are five qualities that generally make a good interview candidate:
- Poise or rather self-confidence. Self confidence can be compared to cologne, it can’t be masked. As a candidate you must be sure of what you are getting yourself into and reflect the same in the answers you give. Articulate your answers with confidence while stating facts as they are supposed to be. Be confident enough to say no to something you do not know. A candidate suffering low self esteem will run into situations where he won’t take risks of making a tough call for the mere reason of fearing to be wrong. Let you poise win over your prospective employers that you can be trusted to make tough calls when times like those come and you are not afraid of being wrong.
- Communication Skills: good communication skills are a must for most jobs. This is the ability to explain and pass across an idea to someone who is not in your immediate working context. This is more critical of a candidate who needs to explain trivial things like tests, and even potential risks related to technical tasks they can perform to people that will need to make important decisions based on these explanations. To most employers, communication skills of a candidate are an important aspect that will determine the adaptability of the candidate in the company.
- Prior Knowledge: It is not rocket science to conclude that a doctor walking into theatre without prior information, however little, of the patient he/she is to operate is sheer madness and the results are bound to be disastrous. Preparedness in key for every job interview. It might sound odd, but employers are curious to know how curious you are about their company, and how much do you know. When it comes to prior knowledge, this means being acquainted with your subject and having a background knowledge about the prospective employer. Whether it is basic knowledge or advanced, it will play a critical role in clinching that job. Go on and talk to uncle Google, trust you me he, or is it a she, has immense solutions and information that will see you through the day. Going for an interview unprepared is a signal that you are literally uninterested in getting the job at hand, and honestly who would want to hire such?
- Common Sense: a normal functional human being possesses or rather must possess six senses, the sixth being common sense. A cliché, common sense isn’t common. Truth is, there are many times a candidate will need to make decisions based on incomplete pieces of information and the only way to come through this daunting task is by having a good level of intelligence, good judgment; in lay mans language, common sense. You don’t have to be a genius (it won’t hurt either), but the candidate needs to at least display the ability to think through a situation and draw conclusions even when he/she has scanty information and come up with a clearer and bigger picture. Of course no sane employer would want to end with a dummy for an employee or someone who cannot think outside the box, even when there is none.
- Truthfulness: this last one maybe the most important one, the prospective employer or the human resource executive needs to trust the person in front of him/her. If during the interview he/she reaches a conclusion you are making up things up and lying to please the interviewer then it is a simple sign you cannot be trusted in the future and of course the results go without mentioning. There are things and attributes that the HR will be willing to compromise but issues on integrity and honesty are definitely a no. As a candidate you cannot try to be honest. You are either honest or dishonest.
In conclusion, make sure you have the whole picture of what you are getting yourself into. There are always extra-points for technical knowledge in the field in question, and this may even be a requisite if the company is looking for an expert in the specific field, however, these are attributes with less weight in interviews.