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What to Expect from a First Job Interview: Tips for Newbies


The first job interview in your life can be a very critical one. As you have never appeared for job interviews before, there is a great chance that you would be scared or tensed to appear for the interview. You have just left college and are hoping to make a new start by joining a good company. If you know what to expect in the first job interview, it will make things easier for you. Here we have listed out a few questions that are commonly asked to candidates in their first job interview.

expect from first job interview

Your First Job Interview – Preparation Tips:

1. What is your Strength?

Usually interviewers are aware that you could be tensed or worried during your first job interview. Since you have no prior experience working for an organisation, the recruiters stick to questions that help to know more about your personality. If you are asked about your strength, make sure you phrase the answer properly so that it pleases the interviewer.

The common acceptable answers to questions like these are:
‘I am a great learner’
‘My strength is my ability to deal with difficult people’
‘I think my greatest strength is my patience’

You need to avoid answers that do not help to strengthen your profile in the interview. Here are the type of answers you should avoid during an interview when asked about strength:
‘My mother is my strength’
‘My good health and constitution have remained my strength’

An experienced candidate knows the purpose of questions asked in an interview. If it is your first job interview, this guidance will help you answer impressively.

2. What is your Weakness?

While most candidates know several strengths and can easily boast about these, when it comes to weakness, candidates are often confused. They feel that revealing the weakness can reduce their prospects in getting the job. This is true in most cases. That is what makes this question trickier for freshers. Here are some answers to this question that may help you strengthen your profile for different jobs:

‘I never get sleep if a task is left incomplete’
‘I get restless if I am unable to meet a deadline, even if it is not a practical deadline’
‘My love for machines/writing etc (based on your profession) is my weakness. I miss out on valuable time with my family because of this’

These are well framed answers that convey your abilities or skills that will benefit the organisation. Such answers are wise. It is best never to reveal what you truly lack. Even if you are selected for the position, employers can exploit you if they know your true weakness.

3. What is your Hobby?

You may possess several hobbies but when you are asked this question in an interview, mention hobbies that may be useful in your profession. Avoid speaking of hobbies that do not relate to the trade at all.

For jobs that require you to have a good logic, you can speak of your interest in playing games or solving puzzles. These games usually help to develop logical quotient. Logic is one thing that developers must possess. There are many other jobs too that require superior logic. For all these jobs, you may reveal your inclination to solve puzzles or other hobbies in the same league.

If you are planning to work in a creative field, you can reveal your love for artistic things. You must make sure these do not appear out of place. If you are a graphic designer, you may say you enjoy drawing or sketching. If you are applying for a writing job, you can reveal your love for poems and your great imagination.

Avoid hobbies like dancing, singing or cooking if your profession is nowhere related to these.

4. Why do you wish to join our firm?

If you are a fresher trying to join a reputed firm, make sure you learn and research about the reputation of the firm. Most firms bask in their own glory and like to hear their own trumpet being blown. Try to understand about when the company was established. Read about the owner of the firm and the principles he believed in.

When you are asked this question, you may state the principles of the firm that match with your principles. You may also speak of the achievements of the firm and say you wish to be a part of a firm with such achievements.

If you are selecting a firm that is the most reputed firm in your filed, make sure you state that. Do not miss out on any opportunity to appreciate the firm.

5. What is your goal in life?

This is yet another common question posed to candidates in their first job interview. While it is true that everyone needs to have a goal in life, most of us barely think about such things while still in college. Even the interviewers know this fact so you can be honest with them about the same.

You can frankly tell them you have not set a goal for your entire life but right now you aim to be recruited in a reputed firm. You may also state a higher position where you see yourself in the next five years. The interviewers are bound to prefer your honesty over exaggerated answers that hold no relation with reality.

6. Have you organised any events in college?

The firms usually seek candidates who are proactive and possess the ability to take initiatives. These are aspects about you that cannot be revealed by asking questions. Individuals who have organised events and have participated in group activities usually possess these qualities. That is the reason why this is a probable question in most interviews.
Ability to organise events also reveals your ability to be a leader. It also shows that you are a great team player. If you have not been a part of college events but have organised other events in your locality, feel free to mention that.

7. How many languages do you know?

In the present world, the jobs are no more limited to a single nation. The business deals of big companies happen with clients belonging to different continents. Thus, knowledge of different languages always remain a great asset. In many multinational firms and organisations where they deal with people from different places, your profile may be ranked higher because of the extra languages you know.

If you are not sure what they are asking, do not hesitate to ask them. Incase of IT engineers, they may even mean computer languages.

They may even ask you a few of the basic subject related questions. These questions try to test your subject knowledge and level of understanding.

If you are a Mechanical Engineer, you may be asked questions like:
What is the law of buoyancy?
What is the Hooke’s Law?
What is the Law of Gearing?

If you are applying for the position of an accountant, you may be asked questions like:
What do you mean by Mercantile System of Accounting?
How good are you at Bookkeeping?
Explain what is meant by the dual aspect concept?

If you are applying for the job of a web content writer, you may be asked questions like:
What do you mean by passive sentences?
What is the difference between American English and British English?
Have you heard about Copyscape?

If you are applying for a Sales job, you may be asked questions like:
What would you do if you are to handle a difficult client?
How many languages do you know?
Tell me what you understand by customer satisfaction?

Things to Keep in Mind for First Job Interview:

There are several things that a candidate needs to keep in mind while heading for the first job interview. Here we have listed these points and they will help you prepare better for the job interview:

1. Stay Confident:

Confidence is the key to success. While most individuals tend to get nervous during their first job interview, you need to have a hold over your emotions. You must remember that most of the other candidates who are new to the profession would be equally nervous. If you can get over your nervousness, your confidence is sure to impress the interviewers.

2. Be Well Dressed and Well Groomed:

First impression is the best impression and you must make sure you have the first impression right. This can happen only if you present yourself well. Select the best formal attire for the interview. Make sure you wear appropriate accessories. Having a watch on your wrist reveals you are time conscious. You may also carry a pen in your pocket.

Men should head to an interview with trimmed hair and clean shaven face.Make sure your shoes are properly polished. If you suffer from body odour, it would be wise to carry a deodorant. You may also carry a mouth freshener and a hand sanitiser.

Women should wear formal trousers or skirt. It is best to limit your make up to the formal level. Select a hairstyle that blends well with the formal look. Select simple colours for your outfit.

3. Other Significant Things:

Make sure you reach the venue on time and inform if there are any delays. Carry all the important documents when you head for an interview.