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Five ways to make an impression during placements

It's placements time again. in an economy which looks like it is in the grip of a slowdown, impressing recruiters to bag their dream jobs has become that much more challenging for students.

In an increasingly competitive environment and make-or-break placement interviews, here are some tips for young students to put their best foot forward.

Know the Organisation
Conducting thorough research about the companies that will be interviewing you and the industry is a must. There can be no excuses on this front, given the amount of freely available information.

"Industry is changing at arapid rate - educate yourself on the trends," says Madhavi Lall, regional head (HR), India & South Asia, Standard Chartered Bank.

Prepare Responses
IIT Kharagpur student Namit Shetty, who just got placed in Goldman Sachs, says one needs to prepare responses to standard questions such as, 'Introduce yourself' or 'Why our company?'. "Think aloud during technical interviews," he says, having once faced a tricky math probability question in an interview.

"Often interviewers are interested in your thought process, and your approach towards problem solving. They may even egg you on in the right direction through helpful hints.

In questions where you are asked to describe yourself, always describe by example - simply attaching a string of adjectives is not the best idea - rather, describe an incident or anecdote that potrays the desired quality in yourself," he says.

Communicate Well
Believe in what you say; be passionate and convincing. "Companies love apositive attitude towards learning and the adaptability to change. It's better to admit that you don't know an answer rather than go in for guesswork. But you need to follow that up with evidence that you are keen to learn," says IIM Calcutta's placements chairperson Amit Dhiman.

Play to your Strengths
Don't aim blindly for the usual bulge-bracket salary sectors or big companies just because everybody else in your batch seems to be doing so. "Look for roles which will leverage your strengths. Don't go with a mob mentality while deciding on roles and organisations. Go with an open mind," says Standard Chartered's Lall.

Be Presentable
A sloppy appearance can undo all the effort you put in to prepare for a good interview, so make sure you put your best face forward. "Present a neat appearance. Sometimes, small things like not getting a proper haircut or not cutting your nails can create a negative impression in the recruiter's mind," says Dhiman.(ET)
Published date : 12 Aug 2015 05:58PM

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