Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Tell me a little about yourself

Job fairs :

An opportunity to find a new position but it can be a terrific learning experience.
A professional recruiter would often tell you that making positive impressions which lead to interviews and job offers is quite a difficult task.
Applicants need to impress the interviewer within the first two minutes of your introduction.

Human resources hire diligent managers to screen hundreds or even thousands of applicants for jobs throughout their organizations.
It is a lot of effort, and because of this they develop a great instinct for what works and what doesn’t work in their companies.
In order to aid this, most job fair interviewers will ask you to introduce yourself. That’s the critical two minutes of the interview.
Don’t be surprised when suddenly “the question” hits you: “Tell me a little about yourself.”

It is an opportunity for the interviewer to take a few minutes off to listen and silently determine where to take the questioning next.
In short, it’s an easy out for him or her.
But it can be subtly dangerous for the applicants because this period of intuition on the part of theinterviewer reflects emotional decision-making that is hard to overcome later.

Many hiring managers make up their minds about an applicant in the first 5-10 minutes.
This being the case, any early opportunity you have to expound on your strengths or state your case is a good thing.
But it can also be a trap – if you aren’t ready for this one, you could shoot yourself in the foot.
Your answer to this “question” plays a crucial role in the successful outcome of your day at the job fair.

It has always been shocking how many technical people are taken by surprise instead of considering this request a certainty and thus preparing for it.
Most interviewers requested this because it offers a glimpse into how prepared the job candidates really are.
Some people misinterpret the question to mean “Tell me about your thesis work.”
Worse come to worst, many misunderstand and believe that the interviewers have asked them, “Tell me a considerable amount about yourself.”

When an interviewer asks you to tell a little about yourself, you are being asked to provide a general framework for discussion.
You will set the stage for later questions that will address various aspects of your academic and work life.
If you plan properly, this will give you the opportunity to steer the critical, opening portion of the interview into an area in which you will do well.

In the 2-minute job fair response, you’ll have a chance to touch briefly on only one accomplishment.
Choose the most appropriate one for the circumstance, and not the one that you are most enamored with.
In the longer version for interview day, focus on three elements:

1)A statement of a problem you were given, the approach you took to solving the problem,
2)The results you achieved.
3)Hit the highpoints only, and you can go back into more details later in your conversation.

Add a closure, unique to each situation, where you state one solid reason that you’d be a good fit for the company you are meeting with.
What is there about the background you’ve described which makes you uniquely qualified to work for this firm?
Keep it brief! You’ll lose the attention of your job fair interviewer if you go on much longer than two minutes.
Writing and speaking succinctly is more difficult than many people think.

Abe Lincoln, a master orator, once told an interviewer that he could “write a twenty minute speech in about two weeks” but that he would only need one week to write a good forty-minute speech. In fact, he said, “I can give a two hour talk on almost any subject right now.”

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