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Introspecting my futile job trials - What they taught me in silence

Experiences  • Posted one year ago

It’s been around 2 years that I got my first job offer. Things have changed much since then, but still I can’t forget how sweet that moment was.

‘Success is sweet, but a right success at the right moment feels even sweeter’

It took me around 7 futile attempts to win my first job offer. I’ve seen failure at each and every level of an interview process, I shouldn’t call them failures to be honest; they’re lessons I was taught by destiny - lessons that every job aspirant should remember to be successful in their trials. Hereby I’d try to put all that I’ve learnt in words.

The first thumb rule to any interview - be quick to react. I’ve even gone through this recently, in a book I’ve got to read – ‘Plan -> Do -> Check -> Act’. At the time of an interview, you need to go through all this in the split of a second. You can never know when the right moment is, so I suggest to be quick in your actions. Be it, in an interview round, or in a written round, or in a discussion round. I understood this when I lost my first group discussion round; just for the reason that I was not quick to react to the moment; speaking out my mind. Although I don’t regret for it coz that had helped me understand my greatest flaw, and get myself into a lot better level now.

The second thumb rule and the most important one - courage. People call it confidence, but I’d like to call it courage. Because with the courage to face, comes the confidence to act. Aspirants must develop courage to face almost anything, from a harsh feedback from the interviewer to the golden words that you’re selected for the role. You must be balanced, unabated and calm. If it’s a failure, you should have the courage to accept it, understand what it means for your next opportunity. Remember, if it comes in the first try, it doesn’t feel that sweet. I learnt this at every rejection I faced, to be precise. But to develop the courage to fight back, you need to be optimistic. You should keep in mind and soothe yourself reminding that failure is just another step closer to your success.

The third thumb rule and the most often told one - skillset. I don’t really have much to advice something on this, coz it differs with people. I myself was one of the brilliants, but yet it took me 7 rejections. In one interview, I was told that I knew nothing about programming while I was one of the most sought after programmers then. It all depends on how you’re going to present it, and how relevant they’re for the moment. You can’t offer a cooking experience for a gardening job. You may be a jack of multiple skills, but you’d fail flat when you go generic about a role which needs a specific skill. You may not be great about it, but you should have the skill at least to assure the interviewer that you can do better. As you can understand, there needs to be confidence to put weight on your appeal to the interviewer. And where does this come from? From our own courage to be confident. So I suggest being courageous to gain confidence. It can build the best out of you.

Having said all this, I’d give you a brief experience of how my first success went like. It always feels great for me to speak about it, coz like I said in the beginning, success after many failures make it sweeter. I had a brief written test on aptitude and quantitative skills. Although I was not that great in the solving skills, I just tried backtracking the question from the answers; something I never thought of before. I cleared it out with the highest score among the takers. That followed a technical interview; it went on for around 3 hours. Yes, it was THREE whole hours, testing my mettle in all ways possible. I was asked to write code, answer a rapid fire round and offered a cake – all simultaneously. I was courageous, confident and too much experienced to not to give up. At the end of all this, I got into the final HR round. She was too much impressed by my attitude that it went on a casual note. I should tell you that although the selected candidates were announced a week later, I knew it from her words.

And now I’ve become better than what I was few years ago. How? Just by practicing what I’ve learnt then.

It’s what is called, the Kaizen.

— Sent by Sriram Kumar Mannava