MBA Interview: strategy & tips

What is the winning strategy to market yourself in a Personal Interview? What are the tips for succeeding in a Personal Interview?
To form a winning strategy for interviews, you need to understand what the interviewer is looking for. The best way to prepare for an interview is to understand the mindset of the interviewer and once you have done this, you can turn your weaknesses into strengths.
Following is a list of parameters on which you would be evaluated in a Personal Interview (these parameters are accompanied with a list of things you need to keep in mind for scoring well in these areas):
  • Introduction: 
    This is that part of the interview where you set yourself up. This is where the panel gets a first look and evaluates your personality. The question type in itself is a vast and you can cover a lot of information in this area.Make sure you mention your positive traits in this section and drop the right hints for the panel to connect with you later in the interview.
  • Education: 
    This is when you portray your overall learning skills, and give an impression of a well-rounded personality. Academic skills (exhibited by your performance) coupled with extra-curricular and academic activities provide the panel a fair idea about your skills. Academic learning is checked with the help of your subject knowledge, and panels frequently pose questions from your favorite subjects to check your sincerity. Technical training and projects also become a probable source for questions. Your knowledge is co-related with your performance, and this gives the panel an idea about your learning levels. Extra-curricular activities are evaluated on the basis of their nature, relevance and level of achievement. Performance in competitions is a further proof of your passion.
  • Current Affairs: 
    Questions on current affairs can become an Achilles heel for many students. These questions act as check of your knowledge, awareness and ability to process current information and environments. To successfully operate in any condition, you need to know the changing business and political scenarios, and knowledge in areas such as politics, economy business society and culture is required.
  • Career Planning:
    What the panel is evaluating here is your “time bound plan” and it is extremely vital that you provide a clear and logical guide for your future plans. The important consideration here is that you should not appear to be too over-ambitious and you should strike a balance between being practical and ambitious. You can always state that you wish to start a business but if you have no inkling of what you are going to do or you do not have any basic plan to back up your claims, this kind of a statement can be hard to justify in an interview. You can always say that you wish to be the CEO of a company but then you need to have a defined career path to justify the same. Making tall claims requires a lot of backing and you would do well to if you keep a humble profile that can be justified easily. The focus, while discussing your long term plans, should always be on the skills you wish to learn rather than the posts and positions that you want to occupy.
  • Personality Assessment Questions:
    Interviews often feature questions on areas such as strengths, weaknesses, role-models, etc. These self-assessment questions are based on your “self-awareness levels” and the degree to which you know your own self. If you know yourself well enough and have enough time figuring out the intricacies of your personality, you would have no difficulty in providing examples for your strengths and detailing your weaknesses and how you could overcome them. Each of these questions requires self-evaluation, and you should make sure you undertake this at the right moment so that you can prepare adequately.
If you have any question, suggestion or feedback, feel free to post it in the discussion box given below.
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