Q: I do well in written examinations but fail to ace the interviews. Although I know the answers, I get nervous and make mistakes while replying to the interview board. Please suggest a way out.
— Arun Choubey, Dibrugarh
A: What interviewers really assess is your soft skills such as the ability to work in a team and to express your thoughts. Acing an interview is easy if you can act confident and self-assured. Almost everybody is nervous before and during an interview, the trick is to act as if you are not and keep your body language confident. Do several dress rehearsals before an interview — that is, wear the clothes you will wear on that day, walk confidently into a room and get some friends to ask you the probable questions. Practise looking confident and feeling positive in all settings. And if English is the language in which the interview will be conducted, practise speaking it.
To increase you confidence, make a list of all your positive attributes, capabilities and successes. Write down your traits and experiences that make you a good fit for the college or employer you are interviewing for and keep reminding yourself of it. And remember you are already better than the thousands of people who did not clear the written exam.
Reach the interview venue with plenty of time in hand. While you wait do deep breathing exercises to stay calm and relaxed. Keep visualising how you will ace the interview so that when it is time for you to face the interview board, you are feeling upbeat and confident. Unless you believe in yourself, it will be very difficult for an interviewer to believe in you. So believe in yourself and project that confidence. Before you know it your dreams will come true.
Follow orders for clinical research
Q: Is it true that there are a plethora of jobs for science graduates, doctors and management/IT professionals in the field of clinical research?
— Sumita Ghosh, Raigunj
A: India has a large population and a range of diseases, so many companies are conducting drug trials here. The other reason to choose India for clinical research is the availability of a large number of science graduates who can be trained to conduct these trials accurately. A clinical research professional has to follow precise instructions, have good observation skills and document results accurately. Data management and analysis is a major part of the job. You can earn between Rs 2 and 5 lakh per annum. The field, however, has little scope for creativity so it isn’t for those who would like to do original research in drug development.
MBA isn’t the only way
Q: I am currently in the third year of BBA. Should I do an MBA after this? What other options do I have?
— Anil Kashyap, Jamshedpur
A: If you are looking to study and work in India then going for an MBA just after you complete BBA is an option. However, if you want to earn your MBA from a foreign university, taking up a job is a better option. Having worked for at least three years before your MBA will make you more employable in the international market. You could work as a management trainee and subsequently get a master degree in India or abroad. Decide whether you like marketing, sales or HR and get a job in the appropriate sector.
If you can comfortably handle large numbers, you could appear for the Institute of Banking Personnel Selection exam. If you crack the exam, you can join one of the many public sector banks in India. Banking requires you to be detail oriented and computing skills are also a must.
If you have good analytical and communication skills, you could study law. Your business knowledge will come handy if you specialise in areas such as commercial law or international trade law.
Logistics and supply chain management is also a happening field now and you could consider doing a course in it.
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