Saturday, May 27, 2017

Preparing for an Interview: Knowing what an employer wants

While it is a fact that jobs are scarce relative to the number of job seeker, it is also true that competent people are fewer than available jobs. Opportunities are not scarce, it is rather the capacity to attract opportunity that is scarce. Today’s youth must learn and communicate employability skills. Your CV is a tool that communicates what you can offer to a prospective employer. To enable you communicate your skills effectively, you need to understand what the world class employer needs from a world class employee. The top skills that organisations need are as follows: 1. Critical thinking 2. Problem solving 3. Communication skills 4. Analytical skill 5. Ability to sell and influence others 6. Proficiency in computer / ICT 7. Technical knowledge related to job. 8. Ability to plan, organise and prioritize work. 9. Ability to work in a team structure According to Bill Gates an American business magnate and co-founder of Microsoft, “The purpose of education irrespective of course of study is to increase our capacity to think, analyse and proffer solutions to the problems”. Your education has hopefully prepared you for the workplace. A typical organisation has a vision, mission, objectives and values they will be looking out for a candidate whose vision can key into their own and whose value is in alignment with their own. Organisations focus on initiatives that revolve around generating a. Revenue, income, sales b. Reducing or eliminating cost c. Quality d. Time During the interview process, your response to questions should show examples of how you have done these things in your past endeavours or activities. Do not trivialize the leadership opportunities you have had in the past e.g. class rep, fellowship roles and other positive association. Imagine mentioning in the interview that you were president of BSF 2013–2014 and the membership grew from 600–1200 by the end of your tenure. That communicates growth and businesses can relate to that. You may not have many interview opportunities but you need to take full advantage of the one you see. 1. Dress professionally. For guys, a white shirt is the best with a tie. Always let the colour of your belt and shoes match i.e. black with black or brown with brown. Use jewellery moderately and perfume/ deodorant as appropriate. Make your hair; it is a good opportunity to make first impression. 2. Do a mock interview – Rehearse and practice with your friend and senior colleague who are gainfully employed. 3. Research about the organisation that is to interview you. 4. Prepare 1 or 2 good questions to ask the panel. How is the organisation heading against the foreign exchange fluctuation? What are the company plans to dominate African continents? 5. Listen to the questions attentively. Respond with the company needs in mind. 6. Be conversant with the current affairs. Listen to news. 7. Be familiar with your CV. Be honest. 8. Use examples of what you have done or how you have demonstrated capacity. 9. Explore opportunities to volunteer while you wait. You pick up skills while working and become more attractive to the employer. 10. Be punctual for the interview and be prepared to wait for long. 11. Apply your faith – Hebrews 11:1. Declare you have your job. Meditate on God’s word.

No comments: