What is Group Interview?
We all have to go through various sets of group interviews so as to be able to land a job in a particular company. Be it a telephonic interview or a group interview, or the ultimate personal interview. But tackling all these different types of group interview have a different set of steps to be followed. And this particular article will deal with the various steps that you can follow in order to be able to shine in a group interview and move a step ahead. But before discussing that, we need to understand what exactly do you mean by group interview or group discussion and what is its importance.
It is the interviews where the candidates applying for the same position are brought together in a room and tested on their responses to the questions asked to them and also how they would react in a teamwork environment. How good the candidates can work with other team members and whether they are able to take in the suggestions of their team’s members or do they think of themselves as superior and put the other candidates down. These are done by the interviewer by putting you in hypothetical situations and evaluate you on the basis of how to handle or tackle the situation or the issue. There are various sets of skills that are tested here by the company:
- The way that you address the problem
- The way of communication adopted by you for the communication within the team
- The amount and the way of teamwork undertaken by you
It is often believed that the group interview can be much more stressful than other types of interviews. Hence it is also believed that this type of group interview gives the employer and the interviewer a better insight into how well the interviewee handles the stressful situations and if you are the best person for the job or how suitable you are for the job.
Preparation of Group Interview
Now that it is understood that what the of the group interview is and have an idea why the group interview is required a the job in the company. But other than that, there are several other reasons as to why the companies conduct the group interview. It is believed and understood that the group interview is conducted by the companies that require their employees to have a lot of interaction with the customers require the employees to be able to think on their feet and keep their cool in situations so that they are much more equipped to better solve the problems. But this advantage of the group interview does not restrict the benefits of the group interview to such industries only. There are various other benefits that other companies can derive from the group interviews.
The following reasons explicitly explain the benefits that the various companies are able to derive from this type of interview:
- Preparation of group interview questions is quite cost-effective in comparison to the one-on-one interview because the time and the money involved to interview one person can be used to a group interview with 15 people together instead.
- The group interview activities are also time effective because going through each application separately can be a quite tiresome process and also time-consuming hence group interviews tend to save the time of the organization.
- Group interview questions have to provides efficiency in the case of companies that intend to hire a large number of people at once because it streamlines the process of hiring the people and the process of interviewing the people.
- It also helps the interviewer to mimic the job situation so that they are able to judge the candidate in a better way and judge if they are able to adjust to the work environment of the company.
How to prepare for Group Interview Questions?
Now that you have understood what the exact meaning of group interview questions is and why do the companies actually conduct it, now we can take the group interview much more seriously, and this requires a little more group interview preparation on the part of the candidate. But there is no need to worry; the article tells you exactly what you should be doing in a group interview in order to be able to stand out and shine during the group interview questions.
Sometimes you might think that you are going in for a one-on-one interview, but you reach the destination to find yourself in a group interview. The group interview activities might catch you by surprise. A group might not necessarily mean that there are a lot of candidates for you to stand out among, but it might also mean that there is more than one interviewer in front of whom you have to sell yourself and prove your worth. You often find yourself in a situation where you are tested or are put in a situation and asked how to handle the situation. The basic aim of the group interview is to judge you as to how well you are able to communicate your ideas and how well you can think on your feet.
This might scare for the group interview activities. But don’t worry; if you keep the following points in mind and are well prepared for the group interview questions, then you can ace the interview very easily. There is no rocket science here that you can’t understand.
6 different tips are mentioned below:
Conceal your thoughts
The first group interview tips Sometimes have it might so happen that you are taken aback by the setting of the group interview as you had expected it to be a personal interview but do not let that show on your face. It might interpret various things out of your expression as the interviewer is looking for someone who is able to work in a team and is able to talk to people. So walk in the room with confidence and be prepared for whatever is coming your way. Also, don’t be too confident and don’t try and judge everyone. No matter how much you want to size everyone up, just do not do it. It could lead to either of the two things; either you could feel highly underconfident or highly overconfident. And both these scenarios are not good for you. Hence just try and keep your thoughts to yourself and don’t let them show on your face.
Try and be friendly
Instead of these group interview question tips that are trying to size everyone up, you should try and be friends with the co-candidates. It is quite understandable that the candidate often tends to be quiet when waiting for their turn and tend to check their notes on the phone; just try not to do that and instead try and initiate a conversation with the fellow candidate. This will, for one, put a good impression on the interviewer. He would be able to recognize the initiator of the conversation and think of you as a more people-friendly person and a good team worker and will also view you as a good networker. So this will be a good start for you. And well begun is half done. Two, the friendship initiated by you might even help you in the group interview ahead. So no matter how nervous you feel on the inside, try and be friendly with the other person; it can get you quite some brownie points.
Try and talk to everyone.
The third group interview tips for using your competition with the candidates to your benefit. Try and address everyone in the room with their first names, at least the maximum that you can. This is projecting you as a leader in the eyes of the interviewer, which is something that you want. Also, you can use the conversations that you strike earlier with the fellow candidate to your aid when the situation so arises. For example, the interviewer asks you about your views on a current topic so you can say that you and Kevin we are just talking on the issue, and these are his views on the topic, which I quite agree with, or I don’t agree with, depending upon your views. What you can also do is take the other candidates to answer forward and build your answer around it. It will also save you the embarrassment of repeating somebody else’s answer. Even if you find yourself alone in a room with multiple interviewers, try and involve every one of them when you are addressing the panel and not someone in particular. It puts you in a better situation and puts a better impression.
Be true to yourself
Tips for a group interview is one of the most clichéd lines but one that holds the highest importance. Many times it so happens that in order to impress the interviewer, people often overdo things or might take a little aggressive approach. Cutting people off mid-sentence or not really paying attention to what they are saying can really harm the image or the persona that you are trying to create about yourself; if you are not a leader or a bold leader, then don’t try to be one. It can backfire and really have some hazardous results. Nobody is of the opinion that they are comfortable working with someone who doesn’t even pay attention or due respect to what you are trying to say. So just be yourself and try and show your true self in the best possible. Be noticed for all the right reasons.
Do not ramble
If you are a shy person or you are just not used to speaking in a crowd, then a group interview can be particularly difficult for you. But when you do speak up, make sure that what you speak has a purpose and solid base. Also, do not apologize for speaking up or for interjecting because you are not. If you do this, it will just harm the image that you are trying to create in the mind of the interviewer, so just try and keep your apology to yourself. Also, if you think that you constantly talking will help you get noticed, then that is not the right thought process. You just need to speak something substantial. Do not repeat the answers; do not speak anything that will just tarnish the image. The preparation of the group interview that you have done for the interview is probably going to go out of the window because the points that you have thought of is probably something that everything else has also thought about. So just make sure that when you say something, it will carry the conversation forward. And your thoughts will have something valuable to add to the ongoing conversation.
Just thinking about what you are going to say next is not going to help you. You need to listen as well. It is of as much importance as is the process of speaking your thought. If you don’t know where the conversation is headed, then you can’t expect yourself to contribute anything meaningful to the conversation and hence just come across as a dumb person. Also, if you intend to use the first name of the people, then listen to them when they speak or else you will just forget their names and lose that edge over everybody else. Also, if you have a thought that you want to speak, then don’t cut the conversation in the middle, instead jot down the point and speak when it is your turn to speak.
Also, make sure that when you leave the room, the interviewer remembers your face. Be it a small thank you or a silly joke that you crack or just ask where to follow up. Stand out from the group. Cracking a group interview is not that difficult if you realize what is it that you have to do and what are the things that you can skip doing during the group interview. And you are good to go. Just don’t try to overdo things. It can never end up in your favor. It will always come across as something that you are trying to force, so keep away from that. Don’t let your fear overpower you. As I said above, it is not rocket science.
This has been a guide to group interview questions. Here we are discussing the 6 tips for a group interview. You may also look at how to prepare a group interview-