Today, being part of a firm, being a job holder, and being part of something big- both economically and society-wise- is no longer just about doing the donkey work. Instead, it is about seamlessly fitting in with the already existing employees, maintaining a healthy work environment, and being able to give your best and stimulate an environment where you rise along with your colleagues. These are a few of the dozen realistic expectations that today’s Gen Z firms expect you to play along with. However, these are traits that an ivy league college degree or an internship at a top-class firm do not confine. This is where your interview comes into the scene.
Interviews can be very intimidating, even more so if you are not a people person. The purpose of interviews can widely vary, depending on which tier of the hiring process you stand. If you are a candidate who was just shortlisted, your interview will probably have questions related to the subject matter of your job. These kinds of interviews require you to hold a good command over your knowledge and counter each question with subject accuracy and confidence.
Moving on, we have what most companies call the behavioral interview. This is the interview where the interviewee is trying to get to know the finer things about you. This is where your soft skills are put to the test and sets the tone for your hiring process. Again, this is a very crucial part, where being flaky is not an option. So, the best advice you can get to stay true to your gut and speak your mind- your instincts are the best support you got.
How to Tell If an Interview Went Well?
All such interview processes have been switched to telephonic or video call interviews in light of the pandemic. Now, this can be a very tricky business. It is one thing to predict how a physical interview went. But an online interview is much harder to read into given the technicalities, not to mention the glitches. Following are the green flags of virtual interviews:
- “Let us talk again”
This is one of the biggest green flags in an interview. Now to deconstruct this statement, consider an outing with a date. Now, if you had a good time and are really into meeting the person again, will you say, “Hey! This was fun. How about I call you later?” otherwise, you just call your friend with an emergency, and then you are out of there. Now apply the same logic to your interview.
if the employer can check off the following points, then you would probably hear the phrase, “This was nice, let us talk again.”
- The employer thinks you are capable of handling all kinds of work situations effortlessly- be it positive or negative situations.
- The employer thinks that you would thrive in the office’s environment- both as a working professional and an individual human being.
- The employer thinks that you are a confident person, who would be willing to lead and take on responsibilities.
- The employer believes that you fit right into the firm’s system, and having you on board with them would make them work more seamlessly and effortlessly.
The “let us talk again the phrase” can point you to two scenarios. First, your next meeting could be a follow-up on the previous by a different interviewee or even the same one, which is usually the next step. Firms do this to ensure that no favors are going around and only the best of the best are hired. This also helps the hiring team get perspective on the candidates, which is always helpful in conclusion. The other possibility is that you have gotten the job, and they are there to discuss further details, deals, perks, and other information with you!
- Long interviews
This situation can be compared to catching up with your friends. Let us elaborate. Suppose you schedule a lunch with your friend or a colleague, and you are having a great time. And while you are at it, you would not mind spending a couple more hours if your schedule permits. The same applies to your interview.
If the interviewee thinks you will be a good fit for the firm, and your communication skills are on point, you hold a good grasp on your area of subject- majorly that you don’t give unilateral answers or end up with blunt yes or no questions, and you charm your interviewee, mostly likely your interview will go longer than you expect.
In some cases, it is possible to stimulate a longer interview by asking the right questions at the right time or by piquing the interviewee’s interest with your answers. However, keep in mind that if it all seems forced and stiff, you are simply slimming your chances with the job. Trying to make your interview last longer with fillers and unnecessary information is as good as non-living fish since it gives the impression that you beat around the bush and are not comfortable speaking the point. On the other hand, an interview doesn’t need to be going well only if it goes long, so cut yourself some slack and give it your best shot.
- Getting a chance to ask questions.
This one can actually mean two very contrasting things. The negative scenario would be your interview was end, and you were a dud. So, in a freaky attempt to awaken the interview’s mood, your interviewer makes a desperate attempt to ask if you have any questions. Though the damage is already done, it can still be rectified. Getting an opportunity to ask questions is your golden chance to turn the boring encounter into a memory etching one. This is your chance to show your potential employer that you have got that X-factor in you, and you can turn around any situation you are presented with.
Talking of the positive scenario, given your rebuttals, answers, and even your sheer presence, the interviewer’s interests are peaked. I really want you to bring your opinion and perspectives into the interview. This is really your chance to show them what is going on in your head, and thinking aloud is an integral part of that. This is your chance to take the reins into your hands and drive the interview in whatever direction you seem to think fits.
- The interviewer asks about your availability.
Now, this is literally the whole point of your interview. Only if the interviewer thinks you to be the best fit for the company or maybe even one of the better choices will he bring up the question of your availability and your preferences. The hiring process can move quite fast if the interviewer seems interested in you and your work. The catch is that you should be ready to fly at this speed. Otherwise, things just tend to get quite sticky and confusing.
When they ask you what your preferred date to start is, or if you have a specific timeframe in mind to start with your job, you can take it that they are interested in bringing you in and are cross-checking whether their timeline fits in well with yours. Many a time, it so happens that if a firm is very impressed with the candidate, they might even make minor changes with their schedule to accommodate the new employee.
Now it is important to keep your date in mind, for the simple reason that this gives the employer more confidence in you that you know what you are getting into and that you can handle the challenge. It also makes your transition process easier because you know what events are to take place at what time. So, it is always a good idea to keep your dates sheet handy.
- Says you are a good fit.
This is pretty straightforward and does not need much reading into. Recruiters do not shy away from giving feedback in an interview, very much so if they take quite a liking to you. This is a scenario where the interviewer is literally telling you that he is quite impressed with you and, of course, your interview and believes that hiring you would be a good move for the firm’s future. He believes that you would be an asset to the firm, and you would successfully stimulate a positive environment for your coworkers.
The reason for acting fast in the interview is that the hiring space is a quick-moving and highly competitive one, and they are afraid they might lose a gem of an employee if they are not riding fast. But, on the other hand, they do not want to lose an employee who would gladly accept a job offer elsewhere. So, to eliminate this shortcoming, the recruiters are quite strong with their compliments game.
- Gives you a chance to discuss salary.
This is one of the final legs of the interview. This happens only and only if you have taken the potential employer by charm. When the interviewer feels they cannot afford to lose you whatsoever, your preferences are given preference. This is the time to negotiate your paycheck. Sometimes, it is hard to budge on the salary if the company has sharp budget cuts. But this is your cue to negotiate perks, if not salary. Trying to figure that out is pretty easy as all you have to do is figure how the company can help you instead of you g=having to spend money invidiously. Your perks choices can range from lunch every day from the office pantry to paid annual vacations.
The key here is to not go over the board and stick to real expectations.
- The interviewer is trying to sell you the company.
This is as clear as still water. The recruiter is trying to impress you with the company because he is impressed with you. If the recruiters think you are a good fit, they will spend ample time raising the firm’s image. They would go ahead and parade all the perks and benefits of you working at their firm. They try to explain the firm’s ethos and why things happen the way they happen at the firm. They try and explain how the system works, how the job position hierarchy works, and maybe even the office timings. They will go all out, in very subtle ways, of course, to try and sell the company to you.
- Discuss your future at the firm.
At this point, you can consider the recruiter to be nurturing ga bond with you. They tend to spell out what the firm needs from you and what kind of efforts you would be required to put in when you take the job. This can also include what kind of steps will be taken in the further hiring process and how to be ready for that. This might be a good time to update yourself with the legal face of the firm- be it their company policies or even simple rules that all the employees need to follow.
- Bonding with the interviewer.
This is something that many people who know who is going to be their interviewer take in as ammunition. Many times, recruiters tend to bond with potential candidates who are like them. This might be over a serious economic group or even recreational activities like beekeeping or speed boating.
When you find a bridge to the recruiter’s life and connect to it, the conversation becomes easy. You can relate subject to personal experience and good for you that they will get all your references. Although keep in mind to never fake your interests as it is really easy for a pro to figure out a flaky person. You really do not want to start on the wrong foot, as that could be a real blow to your chances of getting the job.
Now that we know what kinds of signs to look out for to judge if an interview went well, you know what to read into. Now get that job!