Chinese New Year has come and passed, what follows is the post-Lunar New Year job exodus. How can you make the right decision on choosing your new company?
As Chinese New Year is drawing to a close, you might again find yourself amid the thriving hustle and bustle of the city streets, filled with people scurrying to work and car horns blaring. The big plan you’ve set out to further your career this year is immediately brought to mind. All of a sudden, you feel the motivation creeping back in and ready to kickstart your new journey.
Here are some tips on helping you make the right decision to find your new company and nail all the job interview questions at one go.
Do you know what kind of work environment motivates you to perform your best despite obstacles and setbacks? Is it about the work attitudes of the people around you? Or is it about your mentors, the level of guidance and attention that were given to you? Perhaps it is the physical environment that makes you more productive at work. Either way or all of them, you want to make sure you know well enough your pain points and preferences at work, so that you could focus your attention on the aspects that motivate you most, and maximise your productivity when feeling like giving up (because everyone has this kind of moment at some point). Pinpoint five to six factors and rank them in order of importance.
Knowing yourself is only half of the equation and what the company has that matches your needs is also critically important. According to the Medium, one of the ways to evaluate a company is to look at whether its vision or purpose resonates with you and makes you feel like you’re part of something bigger than yourself. Working with a sense of purpose will inspire you every single day and keep you going down that road. Another way to look at this is to start with the company’s leader, to understand whether he/she is an authentic embodiment of the purpose. Is he/she driven to make the purpose a reality? Try looking for the companies’ founding stories that are compelling, authentic and clearly tied to the company’s purpose.
Is the company interested in helping you to realise your potential and develop your career progression? It is thus important to look at how management approaches their relationship with employees. Leverage on your social networking to see if any of your connections work for the company or have worked there before. For example, if work-life balance is important to you, dig out how the company thinks about it.
If you want to advance your career and progress as a professional in your field, job promotions and a bigger desk can’t measure up to actually developing a skillset and amassing valuable experience. Besides directly reaching out to current or ex-employees, you could also check out job review platforms like Glassdoor.
The right company is not always the big name, a great title or competitive compensation. Indeed, the allure of these aspects are strong at the beginning but will fade once you find yourself dreading every day at work wondering why you would put yourself through something like this. It is important to understand what you like/dislike and what the company has that truly makes you tick, so that you don’t spend your days regretting your decision.
Nine successful human resources executives from Forbes Human Resources Council have shared some insights into interviewers during the hiring process. In a nutshell, they are looking for evidence of the right cultural and behavioural fit between you and the company. They want to see a genuine and authentic desire to join the company in you, so keep asking questions; for example, you could start with asking about the cases they are working on or have done so before. Or ask about their training/mentoring programs to show that you also have a strong appetite to learn. Interviewers would also determine the fit by taking the lead to ask subjective, culture-oriented questions, for example, specific scenarios you might encounter, in order to understand your personality. So loosen up and engage more with the interviewer.
Interviews don’t just look at the technical capabilities but rather 'how’ you have done it and the way you present your answers. There are no right or wrong answers in job interview questions. To focus on the ‘how’ and the way of presenting them, you should structure your answers to behavioural interview questions according to the STAR techniques: S stands for Situation - providing background on the situation. T stands for Task - explaining the task in a subject. A stands for actions - describing the specific actions you took to accomplish the task. R stands for results - summarising what the end-results of your efforts were. Following the STAR technique not only allows your interviewers to understand your thought process and how you would react in changing circumstances, but it also enables you to present your answers in a clear way that they could easily follow even in a moment of distraction.
Practising for the sake of practising won’t make it perfect, everything is better when you understand why you are practising it, and then you can enjoy it. Not everyone can improvise and still manage to impress interviewers, without having them realise that we haven’t prepared for the interview. If you really want something, you put in the effort, right?
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