How to Handle the Pre-Talk Interview

IT companies often treat the pre-talk interview as the first round of interview which often lasts for 5 to 10 minutes in the form of one-to-one or two-to-one. Some companies would like to ask you to select a topic and then make a 5-minute presentation before the formal interview. These companies hope to know your expression ability and personality in the pre-talk interview. Other companies would like to ask you to do some self-introduction and then they give you one or two questions according to your introduction and resume.

As the pre-talk interview is very short and seems like a kind of personality test, it is very hard to make a preparation, but there are still some skills:

1. Don’t answer your questions with simple “yes/no”

If you are given a closed question, you must give the basics of argument after answering “yes/no”. For example, if you are asked whether you are ready to take this busy job, simple “yes/no” will not bring you something valuable and it will be better for you to provide one or two reasons, for example, you can reply “yes, I am ready because I have made an investigation on this industry before choosing this industry and also understand the features of this industry. Meanwhile, I will be able to adapt to this job because I want to keep busy and live every day to the full.” This answer will obviously give the interviewer more understandings about you. But, please remember not to make your answers too long because the whole talk only lasts for 5-10 minutes.

2. Think carefully before answering some selective questions

You should think of many selective questions from the start of job-hunting not just for interview. For example, why do you choose this industry? Why do you select this company? How do you look on the relation between your major and this industry?

These questions can be answered in the following types: the feature of this industry is XXX; the feature of this company in this industry is XXX and my interests and features are XXX, so I have chosen your company.

3. Don’t pretend to be anyone. Just be yourself

Because it is hard to tell what kind of persons are expected by the company before interview, don’t pretend to be someone to please them but just be yourself; you need to believe if you are suitable for them, you will enter next round of interview.

4. Would rather speak slowly than giving unclear expression

Remember, language is the tool to communicate. Especially for the candidates who are not a native English speaker, they will be taken for being nervous if they speak too fast and expression is not clear. Be slow and clear, so that a good communication can be achieved and you also show your calmness.

5. Make your presentation have logic sense

Some companies will ask you to select a topic and then give a 5-minute presentation. These topics are often related with the life, for example, what kind of qualities should be owned by a successful project manager? The common logic for this kind of questions is definition, discussion and the conclusion. You should firstly define a successful project manager from his work and personality; then discuss what kind of qualities are needed to be a successful project manager, such as communication ability, cooperative ability, skills and abilities, etc. Remember to explain why you feel them essential; make a conclusion at last.