Monday, 22 June 2015

6 Questions To Avoid When Asked “Do You Have Any Questions For Us?”

Do You Have Any Questions for Us?
Gauging the keenness and knowledge of a candidate are crucial interview components. It is in this context that the poser “Do you have any questions for us?” is asked, usually at the end of an interview. Specifically, the recruiter is testing one’s enthusiasm to work with the company and understanding of the precise job requirements.

Hence, if you’re asked the same question at an interview and answer improperly, you risk inviting an unfavorable impression, notwithstanding your credentials and skills. Knowing this, here are six questions to avoid asking in response to the aforementioned interviewer query:
1.       How Much Compensation Will I Get?
You ought to remember that an interview is a preliminary procedure and does not connote a recruiter offer. Thus it would be irrational to enquire about your pay structure at this stage. Enquiring about your compensation before a definite offer will irk the recruiter and project you as being unmindful of the job description and responsibilities. Even questions pertaining to prospective salary increments would be irregular and paint you in a poor light.  

2.       What Is Your Overall Leave Policy?
Enquiring about the types, frequency, and quantum of leaves will immediately convey a disregard for serious, regular, and continual work. Hence any questions regarding leave entitlements and the company’s annual leave policy will be resented.

3.       May I Adopt Flexible Daily Timings?
A corporate enterprise essentially functions on the principles of equality, homogeneity, and discipline of all employees and processes. Asking whether you may deviate from office timings would be construed as a violation of the above principles. Thus, questions on the ensuing lines should be avoided:
a)      May I leave early if I’ve completed my daily work?
b)      May I arrive late and stay late? 

4.       Does Your Company Have Good Promoters and Financial Backing?
A recruiter’s fundamental intentions are to evaluate your qualifications and assess whether these meet the company’s exact requirements. Hence, an interviewer will definitely dislike pointed questions regarding the company itself, especially ones that query its status as a going concern.
Thus, you would do well not to ask about the company’s investors and fund lenders, instead impressing the interviewer with your employment proficiencies.

5.       What Is Your Employee Termination Procedure? 
The recruiting company is not your adversary – it genuinely wants you to demonstrate your credentials and associate with it on a long-term basis. Consequently, if you straightaway enquire about the company’s termination policy, you’ll be signaling your intention to break away from the company in the foreseeable future.
Therefore, any questions revolving around notice periods, the resignation process, and termination benefits ought to be staunchly eschewed.
6.       Shall I Show You My Testimonials? 
As a general rule, one should avoid invoking one’s testimonials and recommendations unless specifically asked to do so. Doing so will lead the recruiter to think you’re desperate and not fully confident of your intrinsic abilities and employability.

Now that you know how to solve this interview conundrum - good luck!

Monday, 15 June 2015

Career Counseling – Do you know what you are in for? - Career Advice
Counseling can play a crucial role in the career choices of a student. It is a process that helps a student determine the right career option through evaluation of the student’s aptitude, general interest and other relevant qualities. Hence, it is advisable to have regular counseling sessions, which will help identify the right career choice for an individual student.

Identifying the right career for a student is, however, a difficult task. It involves thorough analysis of several factors, and accordingly guiding the student. There are various elements that influence this process and if the evaluation process is not right, it may lead to incorrect career choices. A student expects the right advice from a counselor and hence the right methodology needs to be followed.

In order to facilitate this, counselors must ensure that students feel comfortable while speaking with them, and share their own opinions and thoughts for the facilitation of a dialogue. Counseling must start early, so that the process can be given sufficient time and the student as well as the parents are advised properly. It is feasible to start the counseling process while a student is in the 9th standard, and this process must continue, through frequent sessions, till the time the specialization of the stream is determined in class 11th

Career counseling needs to go beyond testing the aptitude of the students and must include identifying the interest of students in terms of career choices. While aptitude determines what can be a good career choice for a student, it may not give a complete picture. It is equally important to gauge the level of interest that a student has in a particular type of career and to make the student realize that the interest is genuine and not temporary or influenced by parental or peer pressure.

While there are several coaching classes that help students to crack entrance exams, these are not synonymous with career counseling centers. Counseling must begin much earlier and should continue till the time the student is able to make the right career choices. Coaching classes cater to a limited number of career choices - the ones that are termed as ‘top career options’ by students and parents. 

However, in today’s scenario, there are many career options available that help students utilize their potential to the maximum. Many of these options did not exist earlier and are beyond the realm of traditional career directions. Counseling, therefore, plays a critical role by not just helping students and parents in identifying the potential that a student has, but also by providing them information about various career options that might suit a particular student.

Counseling encompasses a larger perspective and must have contributions from not just the counselor, but also schools and parents. A counselor may just facilitate the process, but schools and parents need to guide students in terms of the recommendations made by the counselor. This would ensure that the students make right career choices.

-By Team

Wednesday, 3 June 2015

How to deal with Resentment on Performance Appraisal

Resentment on Performance Appraisal 
Admittedly, immediate supervisors and the Human Resources department have it tough during performance appraisals. There are bound to be employees who feel embittered and discriminated at not being promoted, not being offered salary increments, or their job purviews not being enhanced. Indeed, it’s difficult to please everyone but there are definite things managers can do to counter and assuage periodic review resentment.

Be Transparent and Upfront

All too often, performance appraisal results are conveyed too vaguely to the employees leading to bitterness and frustration. Thus, appraising authorities are strongly recommended to be precise about the employees’ performance and convey their shortcomings clearly. For instance, if a particular employee’s promotion has been postponed owing to him not accepting added job responsibilities, this fact must be expressly stated and discussed. Just sharing such information in a formal manner will enable employees to better appreciate the company’s viewpoint.

Encourage Feedback

Managers owe it to subordinates to foster an environment of openness and mutual interaction. Hence, listening to the opinions and comments of employees during and after performance appraisals is crucial. This will permit employees to vent their grievances freely and transmit a potent message that the company is receptive to their thoughts. Reciprocal interaction like this will certainly reduce resentful sentiments.

Appraise Fairly

Lost promotions or compensation stagnation are indubitably difficult for employees, especially for
those who have spent many years with the enterprise. If these situations arise during an appraisal,
managers are forcefully suggested to recall employees’ positive traits and highlight them continually. 
In no circumstances should officials perpetrate personal attacks and public reprimands. Disgruntled
workers can be placated by telling them that they are still valued for their competencies and their
efforts are integral for company growth.

Keep Records

Maintaining records of past and present appraisals will allow managers to document employee performances
and appraisal results, effectively. These notes will serve as crucial evidence and a ready reckoner to counter
grievances, thus, efficiently tackling employee resentment.

Provide a Road Map

Static performance appraisals that are not forward looking cause considerable unpleasantness. To
remedy this, managers and HR officials are advised tochart the future course of action for all
employees distinctly. The workers must be explicitly informed about upcoming projects, their
forthcoming duties, and opportunities for career progression. These measures will help diffuse
resentment by motivating employees and giving them things to look forward to.

Set Meaningful Objectives

To thwart performance review resentment, appraising officials should set practical and unambiguous
employee objectives that are inextricably linked to the company’s broader vision. The more definite,
quantifiable, and company-focused the goals are, the less the chances of employee bitterness. Before
the next appraisal, the objectives must be invariably reviewed and altered accordingly.

Be Suitably Strict

Lastly, if appraisal resentment is unwarranted and threatening to affect overall company performance,
it is imperative to adopt stern measures. Supervisors must formally report intractable employees to
top management, who can then initiate procedures like official warnings and even termination
notices. Team