The personal interview or PI is known as the most important part of the SSB interview process, it a formal interaction between the candidate and the interviewing officer also known as IO which could go up to 30 mins to 2 hours.
The personal interview is something where you can make the most powerful impact because PI is something where the candidate is meeting the assessor individually and the whole interview is about the individual candidate, unlike GTO where you work in a group and Psychology tests where the assessor judge you based on your responses.
A personal interview is so crucial that even the slightest mistake can ruin your whole performance or might damage your chances of getting recommended. On the other hand, the personal interview is so simple, it is just a formal interaction but most candidates make it complicated because of a few common mistakes, in this article we are going to talk about what are the common mistakes candidates make, what is the best way to face the personal interview and we are going to read few best and real interactions between the IO and the recommended candidates.
The common mistakes made during person interview:
- Having FEAR: Fear is something which impacts your performance, be it sports or exam or even asking someone for the date. Fear comes from expectations and expectations can relate to what one believes will make them happy and also what one has come to expect from life. This means that expectations can be both empowering and disempowering. The fear which comes during PI is the fear of rejection. There is nothing wrong in keeping high hopes, but entering the PI hoping for some particular questions asked to someone else or hoping for IO to behave with you in a particular way is not a good idea. It is best to enter the PI without having preconceived notions in your mind. The fear might confuse you more and hampers your performance. Just enter the PI with good preparation and confidence and face the questions with a calm and cool mind without expecting a particular response from the IO.
- Lie: Do not lie unless you are a good lier. When you lie in an interview, some part of your brain always keep that impression alive till the end of the interview or maybe after the interview, it affects your performance and personality in a bad way. Your mind knows that you are lying which automatically drops your confidence as a human being. Second, you will not be able to think clearly, your mind always tries to calculate the risk of getting caught, so it always calculates the questions asked by IO and answers in such a way which might not be a confident answer and shows lack of clarity. You might end up answering a very simple question incorrectly or you might not even listen to the question completely and just want to say something just for the sake of it.
- Too much in PIQ form: If you do not have anything particular to write on the PIQ form, do not write anything just for the sake of filling the PIQ form. You will face questions from the PIQ form and it might make the matter more complicated for you. As a matter of fact, you don’t need to be too good in everything, it is perfectly fine not to have super achievements in sports or education or something to boast about in the PIQ form. Just believe in yourself and stay confident, take accountability for things you have done in your life either good or bad.
- Nervousness: This is a common behavior or say emotion of every human being, we all feel nervous during crucial moments of our lives, again the nervousness arises because of hope of achieving something and fear of losing it, you will never feel nervous while doing something in which you are not interested and don’t want to achieve something out of it means no expectations. The only way you can control nervousness by controlling your mind, a healthy body and mind makes your confidence and reduces nervousness during crucial moments of life. Also, removing the fear of losing something remove nervousness. Meditation and Yoga are the proven ways through which a human can control his mind, spirituality also helps in controlling the mind and makes you more confident. The shortcut for not feeling nervous is to feel good about yourself, give importance to your life a human being, acknowledge your achievements even if they are smaller. All the successful people are hardly nervous in front of others because they know they are successful and they admire themselves for achieving something in life. Value your life and don’t underestimate it.
You can comment below the mistakes you think you have committed during your personal interview.
Now coming to the interesting part, below you can read the real interactions between IO and the recommended candidates, similar responses do not mean one will get recommended because the responses come out of individual personality and experiences, but you can learn few things from these responses, which are, confidence and clarity of thoughts. All the answers you will read below are something you can not answer spontaneously unless you genuinely feel and admire them.
Entry CDS 11 SSB Allahabad
IO: “which regiment would you like to join?”
Me: I am very much impressed by their war cry i.e. “JAI MAHAKALI, AAYO GORKHALI!”
The candidate was confidence and had clarity of thought.
Entry NCC Special 11 SSB Allahabad
I.O. How many friends do you have and who are your best friends?
Ans. Sir, I am a friendly person but I have 3 best friends Harshit, Rahul & Salman.
I.O. What are your 3 qualities which Harshit will tell me?
Ans. He would tell that I am disciplined, hardworking and soft-spoken.
I.O. And what about Rahul what will he tell me about you?
Ans. Sir, he will tell that I am helpful, fun loving and I give excellent advices.
I.O. “abhi tak tumhre kisi dost ne nahi bataya ke tum fauji afsar banoge?”
Ans. Bas Sir, Salman bolne hi wala tha aapne pucha hi nahi usse.
I.O. How do you think you were able to influence your group?
Ans. Sir, we were 20 candidates and at least 15 of them try to imitate my language and tone ( basic U.P. wala kanpuria and banarsi touch in my tact).
I.O. If not selected this time what will you do?
Ans. Sir, abhi tak to all my tests have been fine and I think I am having positive chances to make it this time but if not I also got selected for Indigo Airlines as security executive and I will be joining it.
I.O. “tum pakka bouncer banoge”
Ans. No sir, I will be looking after the luggage section.
The candidate was witty and smart. His answers show confidence, clarity of thought and quick-witted.
Entry TES 18 SSB Allahabad
Interviewer: – What happens to the mass of the object when speed of it reaches the speed of light?
Me: – Mass becomes infinite. (Told the formula of inertial and non-inertial mass)
Interviewer: – What is refraction? What is the cause of refraction?
Me: – (Told him about refraction) I would consider light as a wave to answer this question (as light possess dual behavior). Because of the change in wavelength and the speed of light wave, the refraction occurs.
Interviewer: – How can you say that Light possesses particle-like behavior too?
Me: – By Photoelectric Effect. The time lag between the incidence of radiation and the emission of a photoelectron is very small, less than 10−9 seconds. If it behaves like a wave here, it would take several hours. Every electron absorbs one photon, then it is emitted out if the incident light has equal to or more frequency than a threshold frequency.
The candidate knows what he is talking about and has immense knowledge of the subject, he utilized the opportunity to engage the IO in the same topic where he could blow his mind with the knowledge he has.
Entry Indian Navy 12 SSB Bangalore
Interviewer: So Bimal you are in Merchant Navy. As of my knowledge, it’s a pretty good job and provides a big salary. So, why do you want to leave it and join Indian Navy which is far more hectic and can never pay you even close to what you will earn as a Merchant Mariner?
Me: Sir, first I like to clarify that all the forces have equal importance to me. But since I’m trained in Marine engineering I’ll be more of an asset to the Indian Navy than Army or Airforce. Now my answer to your question. Sir, I always had a dream to earn that uniform and serve my country. The biggest reason I joined Merchant Navy is because it provides me a similar uniform I get in Navy but the country part is always missing. I have spent around 18 years of my life in the Defence cants. I am totally aware of the Armed Forces culture and it always thrilled me. People from all the corners of the nation come and live together in harmony. In a way, it binds the whole country. And what I love the most is its uniformity. I mean everyone is given similar accommodation, have the same living standards, have the same working conditions, they work together, play together, celebrate together, their kids go to same school. Where do you find such a place! Only the defence can provide you that and I can give anything to get such a life. As far as the money part is concerned, yes money is important. But what is more important is satisfaction. What “satisfaction” means to me may not mean the same to you. And Armed Forces definitely reflects my satisfaction. That’s the reason I want to join my the Defence forces.
Interviewer: That was an impressive answer. But Bimal, if just being in that uniform satisfies you then why didn’t you join as a jawan to get that uniform and serve the country?
Me: Sir, my grandfather died when my dad was merely 3 years old. He didn’t get any comfort in life as I was provided by my dad. And after all the struggles, my dad joined Army as a jawan. Now if I also join as a jawan then what’s the difference between my dad and my grandfather. Sir, a good leader is one who produces better leaders and a good parent is one who produce better kids. And I want to prove that my dad is better than my late grandfather.
The interviewer smiled and moved on with other questions.
The candidate seems really mature, he acknowledged the hard work of his parents in a clear way. He is clear in his thoughts and knows what exactly he wants to do in life. These type of answer cannot be fabricated because you must think about such aspects of lives in your daily routine and expereinces.
Entry CDS 19 SSB Allahabad
IO – why did you not score well in 10th class?( as I only scored 59.8%)
Me – First of all sir, my marks are according to the understanding of my subjects at that point of time and I am completely satisfied with my marks which I got. Secondly, marks are not everything if life, my father has always given priority to overall personality development rather than just studies and studies and securing 90+%.
IO – why are you not working anywhere since you’ve graduated? ( I did not work anywhere since I’ve graduated from my college because I wanted the armed forces to be my first and only career in life. I played a huge gamble by doing this but I knew from the starting that it I worth every sacrifice )
Me – (I gave the same explanation to the IO sir) and also added that working in an environment in which you know that you won’t fit in and even after adapting into it you won’t be as productive and not working at your full capacity it would be only a waste of time as well as efforts.
The candidate doesn’t feel bad about his low marks and take accountability with full confidence, in fact, his thoughts are not merely limited to gaining more marks in school, he understands the importance of individual personality that is something out of bookish knowledge.
Entry CDS 19 SSB Allahabad
IO: Good evening Sumit. You have been here for 19 times. You must have written some books on SSB.
ME (smiling): no sir. But I gave suggestions to two of my friends and they got a recommendation.
IO: They are in the academy but you are still here.
Me (smiling): yes sir! I am still here with you.
IO: okay Sumit. Now I am giving you a chance to write a book on SSB. What will you write in that book?
Me: I told him everything that I have written in this success story.
The candidate destroyed the attempt of IO to make him feel guilty about his number of attempts, in the same answer he shows his talent where he helped his friends to achieve the same dream he is thriving for.
CDS OTA Chennai AIR-53
I had my interview on 3 days, IO asked me about why I did not take any break for prepration after 12 and studied in private college. I told him that I was an average student in academics, taking a year off would not have been a wise decision as I thought that it will be a waste of time and money of my parents. He gave a smile and it continued nicely.
The candidate shows that he knows his weak points and that helped him to make wise decisions in life. He is confident about what he is doing because he knows himself more than anyone else.
CDS 1 2016 OTA Chennai AIR-12
There was a moment where he asked me “Where do you see yourself 6 years from now?”. My response was “Major in 4 Gorkha Rifles sir”. Be confident friends, not over-confident. Finally, when my chest number was announced as being recommended, I was elated and thanked my God’s.
The candidate gave a perfect and quick-witted reply to IO which definitely made a huge positive impact.
These are the few conversations from which you can learn something for your next SSB interview, these are the real conversation but we do not suggest you to try to match the same answers, in fact, you must know inner self and your surrounding more, the answers will come automatically with confidence. We will add more such conversation here very soon.
If you are preparing for the SSB interview, we would suggest you get these books which will surely help you to make an impact.
SSB Interview Preparation Material [ 100% Recommended]