As part of the management of a company I need to conduct interviews. Now if I understood technology, I could have asked questions on technology. My knowledge of technology, macro economics, micro economics, HR, accounting, marketing strategies, – is limited. Most students would look at me ‘Are you from Mars’ if questions from Dalton, Sheldon, Hull, Keynes, were part of the questions. And frankly knowing whether the answers are correct is a challenge for me. There is no economist with whom I could agree. Now my knowledge of accounting is so basic, that I dare not embarrass a student – if he gets it wrong, my colleagues would be embarrassed to recruit him. So accounting is also out. History – one colleague asked me ‘Why should the candidate know about ‘30th January Marg’ in Delhi? Indira Gandhi was not killed in Jan.
So History is out. Students do not do many creative things. Neither should they do. As soon as they enter the corporate world they will be forced out of their creativity anyway. The only creative thing that most of them end up doing is to sell a product which is cancerous for the customer but profitable for the person paying his salary. However, all their creativity is tested here.
So here are some of the questions that I do ask. I am so happy that I do not have to answer them.
1. What is the length of the tennis court? (I have no clue)
2. Have you climbed a tree (a cousin taught me in class 3)
3. What is the most important thing you’ve learned in high school? (I learnt society says it respects teachers and pays them less than most professionals including carpenters, plumbers, taxi-drivers, but what the hell! )
4. What do you expect to be doing ten years from now? (I have no clue, I know nobody who knows, but what the hell!)
5. If Sachin Tendulkar cannot bring home the world cup in 2011 would you still call him a success? (So what if cricket is not an individual game?)
6. How do you define “success? (I have an amazing definition given by a well educated 8th class pass client of mine)
7. What have you liked or disliked about your school / college / institute? What will you change there? Will you teach there? (This reveals who paid his fees – normally POP bank or MOM bank)
8. How would you describe yourself to someone who did not know you in 60 seconds? (I learnt this at a BNI – Business Network International – an elevator speech.) Most students squirm.
9. What value can you add to this organization, your college, your school, the society in which you live?
10. Are you happy lying about your coming late for a meeting? (Are white lies ok with you?)
11. Who will pay for your wedding expenses? (amazing answers so far)
12. What has been your proudest achievement so far? (checks thinking on your feet is what my boss says, so I have to ask this question – but I cannot answer it for myself)
13. If you could talk with one living (or dead) person, whom would it be and why? (My answer keeps changing, but the number of girls who say Mother Theresa is boring – all thanks to Sushmita Sen according to one friend who teaches at an MBA school)
14. What events have been crucial in your life? (no kid picks a negative event and that to me is sad)
15. What mark do you feel you have left on your school / parents / college / teachers?
16. What is your view on drinking and driving? Have you done it? (only 1 person admitted to doing it, but I have personally travelled in a car being driven by a drunk)
17. What is unique about you? (Boring but a nice question to ask)
18. What will you do if you are stuck in a jam, a terrorist shootout, in a lift on the 22nd floor, in a floor on fire, …….blah, blah, blah
19. What could you contribute to the company?
20. When do you plan to leave?
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