Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Summer Placements

There are two times when I felt that most of my gtalk contacts become active – firstly, when CAT or GD/PI dates are approaching; and when Placement Season is approaching. Due credit to my IIM background, I've been a sought-after mentor amongst the b-school fraternity since the days when I was also a student (or rather, participant) of the b-school. And now as the summer-placement season is on in most of the b-schools, I'm been enquired about a lot of related and not-so-related things. I've found that a lot of people unnecessarily get stressed about getting a 'decent profile' (no definition available for this quoted word, not even in Oxford or Webster's) but as this post will illustrate, it's so simple.

Let's begin with résumé. Many people don't know this, but "résumé" is a french word that means "fictional short story". Do I need to say anything more, after this so-relevant translation? Anyways, let me continue for those people who still want to know more. Well, it is usually 2-3 pages long, and details the chronicles of your life in an entertaining fashion. What you write in your resume is very important, and if you are having trouble filling it up with funny anecdotes then try this. Think about what Superman would do if he had Einstein's IQ and could time travel. Write down all his adventures in your resume and put your signature at the end of it.

As you might know, most resumes have a "hobbies" or "interests" section. The key to filling up this section is to write unverifiable claims that show what an interesting person you are. If people decide to be honest (rather, brutally honest) then they might write lazing around, testing various sleep-inducing methods and collecting swear words in different languages and after writing this, they can be well assured of getting placed on day-n (where n is far greater than zero). It could have rather been rephrased as studying abstract impressionism, skydiving, helping impoverished poor people. No need to mention that the abstract impressionism is "TV", skydiving is really throwing paper planes from rooftops and the impoverished poor person you are helping is yourself.

Anyways, after getting a resume shortlist, the most important thing to follow is an interview. This may sound ironic, but the best way to do well in an interview is to have a misplaced sense of very high self-esteem. Most interviewers can immediately detect if you are low on what's called "self-confidence", so you have to go into the interview thinking you are Brad Pitt (or Angelina Jolie for ladies).

Think about it that there are more candidates than there are puzzles, so the interviewer is going to be asking the same questions over and over again. The best strategy is to ask your friends who went to the interview before you, and then act surprised when the interviewer asks you the same question. So, you can either react like "Aahaaa! I know this one. Page 45 of 100 most asked interview questions. Answer is 25" or you can opt to make few faces, humming dialogues like "interesting and challenging indeed", apply few fundae, and in some 5 minutes say like "Well, 25 should be the answer"

After puzzles, you would be grilled with the most difficult question and indeed a popular one – What is your weakness? Now what you can possibly do is to say, chocolate or gossips or communication skills. Well, these type of "real" weaknesses would blunder your chances. So, better try to say something that is really an advantage to the company, and you cannot help doing it. Something which I just suggested one of my friend on the day before. "I tend to work too hard, sometimes late into the night, because I find it unable to give up on a problem without finishing it."

That would be the "brahmastra" for you which would definitely get you in the firm; and if something is left then utilize the last question – "Anything which you would like to ask us". Don't ask if how much incentives are there, or regarding the work pressure and all. This would deplete your chances, so better ask something like, "What are the learning opportunities for me?" "What can possibly be my career path" and so on.

Follow these steps properly, and you will not be disappointed J

1 comment:

Quaintzy Patchez said...

Awesome!! _Totally_ awesome! :D although, i aint going _anywhere_ closer to IIMs ;)