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How to get through campus placements

You spent 2 excruciating years in a base camp called Kota or at a closed room studying dreadful ML Khanna’s maths or HC verma’s physics aiming to crack IIT-JEE and get into the best engineering college.

The dream fed away with you landing in a NIT, IIITS or so called other engineering colleges. The first & second years go in fun (bunking classes, hanging out with friends and doing all useless stuffs you know), the third year in dreams of a MNC and only worrying, watching seniors getting placed or getting rejected. Daydreaming about office and huge pay slips.

Now comes the final year and the most hyped topic of college life, “Campus Placements”. You have been hearing interview stories from your seniors all these years, how they heroically from a pool of thousand students got the coveted offer, like a gladiator gets his golden sheath after the victory.

Gone are the days when campus placements were all about recruiters scanning a pile of student resumes, discussing pay packages, printing out a few appointment letters and walking off.

With Just every professional college out there competing for higher rates of placements through campus for getting hyped & more admissions, these processes are only becoming more complex and lengthy.

Now recruiters have multiple eliminating rounds of “Aptitude Tests”, “Verbal Tests”, “Technical/Coding Test” , “Multiple Group Discussions”,  several round of personal interview with a panel of HRs.

Recruiters put on a pair of eagle eyes to scan through the student who will be the best fit for their company. 

To crack that much awaited day, here are a few tips on how to get through campus placements.

1. Accept Placements that go with your long term Goals

Students should know that getting that job in that MNC which comes to your college is not always that mandatory that you think. Companies today have left branch boundations & let just any branch guy to sit for placement. 

But for e.g. If you are a mechanical guy and love your nuts n bolts, but for the sake of getting that offer letter of IT and that job of being in a AC office, you sit in placement and get recruited, then you are getting fooled yourself.
If you don’t like computers & coding, don’t have good aptitude for it, then your life as an IT professional will not be what you were told in college as glamorous in air conditioned offices. You would get into a MNC like TCS/Infosys/Wipro/ IBM/Ericsson and during training you will experience the problems. You will be struggling with those damn codes and trying to understand why the hell these codes give that output and what the hell “this” does. You might feel that all these things need to be learned from scratch with your fellow computer guys leading the teams. Now you would be in the deadlock, neither you can go back nor you are happy being here and messing with the codes

2. Don’t just follow the accepted means, be ready for the unconventional

Even if you are fully prepared with your polished shoes, formal pants, tie or formal suit to face that interview & multiple GD sessions & impress the recruiters, you may have to face some really unconventional means during the whole process. In some of such ‘shocks’ you may be asked to give interviews on Skype, hangout, telephonic or some other online tools of screening. 

To lower HR expenses, companies are now looking at such low cost but fast ways to interview candidates.

3. Always maintain eye contact with interviewer and show your willingness to learn

Look through the recruiter’s eyes and imagine how many exaggerated statements they must be hearing during campus placements when every student is trying to trumpet their past achievements. Do you think the recruiter is really going to care about the tasks that you performed when you were a summer trainee? Probably not… Tell them what you are, tell them what you can do and how you will do. Tell them why you are the best for their company, why you are different from others.

Try to answer every question with an example. The recruiter will be impressed if you give an example supporting your answer.
Suppose, you are asked, why travelling to Mars for Mangalyaan was less costly then travelling in auto in India? 

You can answer the question in different ways though you know that it’s all due to gravity. You can give the example, how orbiting in an elliptical path with thrust at certain intervals helped in a way to escape from earth and travel to Mars. Still answer is the same but the way to support your answer is different. The recruiter is convinced and you get selected.

4. Always LEAD the interview

Answer the question in a way that you know the next question that might came up from your answer. Now you will be ready for next question and that will prove your brilliance in leading the interview. Be positive, Answer straightforwardly, If you don’t know the answer, you can tell them something like this “I barely remember this, I think we should try something else”. Keep smiling and show him that you are not desperate, answer casually.

 Once an interviewer asked “Do you smoke?” The guy positively said “Yes” and the interviewer took out the cigarette and asked him to lighten up. In the end the guy came out smoking a cigarette, with an offer.

An interviewer just wants you to be open and leading. You should always take things positively and answer to the point. If it is yes, be sure of it, if it is no, say NO, don’t nod! So basically it’s called leading the interview. Never give the interviewer a chance to point your carelessness.

5. Research before you appear

Thoroughly know the company in and out before you think going for an interview. Obviously, you need not hire a spy. A search engine might solve the purpose.

A friend of mine was asked about the products Mu Sigma has developed. He did not only mention all the products of Mu Sigma but also elaborated how they can be used for analytics.

Though he had no idea what analytics is but he had done R & D on Mu Sigma’s website that provided him ample idea about Mu Sigma and its products. It did amaze the interviewer.

6. Try and Try

There are a lot of students out there with everyone trying to get the offer letter but only a few will get that.  So you may fail sometime but that does not mean you are weak and you can’t get placed. Every failure teaches something, work on those failures and you will achieve what you have wanted the most.

“Winners don’t do different things, they do things differently.”

Lastly, it’s your aptitude & attitude that will take you to new heights in your career!! Be positive and self-confident.

“if you want something you never had then do something you never did.”

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