In the SSB, the interview plays a very crucial role, because during the interview process the focus of the Interviewing Officer (IO) is completely on the candidate. Since, majority of the Group Testing Officer’s (GTO) tasks have been done by the time the interview process starts, the IO has a fair idea as to how the candidate works and forms a rapport with the group. The candidate’s skills while working as a team member and other leadership qualities are assessed. So in the interview, the IO is now interested in the candidate, his/her life, his/her ambitions, his/her capabilities, his/her reason to join the Forces and his/her potential contributions to the Forces.
From the candidate’s point of view, the interview process is even more important since the candidate gets the chance to directly converse with the IO and to convince him that he/ she has it in them.
Following are some of the ways to convince the IO:
- Pay attention to what you write in your PIQ form.
The Personal Information Questionnaire form is highly important. It’s a mini reflection of you. The IO will go through your PIQ form first and then come up with questions for your interview. So it’s highly important that whatever you write in your PIQ is 100% true. Do not even think of lying or bluffing. You will be caught and that won’t really give a good impression, would it? Remember whatever you have written in your PIQ form. Most of the questions’ basis would be the form itself.
- Your actions need to convince the IO rather than your words.
When you say that you are passionate to join the Armed Forces or you wouldn’t think of any other job but to be an Armed Forces Officer or that this what you’ve always wanted to be and wanted to do then your actions need to be in sync with it. Whatever you’ve done in life so far should vouch for what you are saying. Verbal convincing isn’t good enough. Your actions need to be convincing.
- Strengthen your knowledge about the Armed Forces.
Imagine that you go to an organization for an interview and the interviewer asks you “what do you know about us”? Or “do you know when did our organization come into being”? And you don’t know the answers to these questions. What impression would it give about you? On one hand you said that it’s your dream to work in this organization while on the other hand you don’t have the basic knowledge about it. Same goes for the Armed Forces. If you are being assertive that you want to join then it’s expected out of you to know the basic facts about them. It also becomes all the more important if you belong to the Defence background.
- Be aware of your surroundings and the world.
You need to be aware of what is happening in the world around you. So the current affairs, the news it all becomes very important. Know about the latest news regarding the military, the political and the financial aspects. The main focus is not on testing your GK but it’s expected that you must know what is happening globally and how our country is being affected by it. Be alert. Be socially aware.
- Be confident. Believe in yourself.
Convince yourself first before convincing anyone else. You need to be able to tell yourself that ‘yes, I can do this’; ‘I have what it takes to be an Officer’. Believing in yourself is extremely crucial. Imagine someone who isn’t self-assured, low on confidence, nervous, scared sitting in front of the IO. Do you think that such an individual can ever be convincing enough to the IO? A candidate who is confident, who believes in himself/herself has a better chance in convincing the IO since he/she isn’t faking anything. They say what they believe.
- Work on the OLQs present in you.
There are certain qualities and traits that are present in all of us, in varying intensities. The Officer Like Qualities are something that must be there in a candidate to become and Officer. While some of them can be worked upon, others are innate. Identify which of the qualities are present in you and sharpen those qualities. Try to develop those qualities which are weak.
- Be realistic and logical.
While you speak with the IO, you are constantly being evaluated. Each word that comes out of your mouth is listened to very carefully. So don’t lie. Try not to brag about yourself or your achievements. While answering a trick question be logical. The IO might give you a situation and ask for your reaction, in such situations your reasoning ability is being checked, so think and answer logically.
- Remain calm.
The IO will throw questions at you that would be least expected but instead of freaking out or losing your cool, you need to remain focused and answer the questions appropriately. He just wants to see how well do you handle and tackle awkward questions and situations.
- Don’t try too hard.
The interview gives you a chance to sit face to face with the IO, converse and convince him that you are Fauji material. When you get a chance to prove that ‘you have it in you’ and that you are fit for the Forces you don’t want to blow it by trying to overdo the convincing act. Portray the OLQs which are present in you and let the IO be convinced by your actions, responses, your confidence, your determination, and your assertiveness. And remember that if you have ‘it’ in you, convincing won’t be a hard task.
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