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Nervous at interviews? Here's help!
Nasha Fitter
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May 18, 2005

BPO training expert Nasha Fitter, has the anwers for all your queries on BPO training and communication skills.

Here are some of them:

I have been working as a customer support executive at an ISP in Kerala [Images] for five months. I am a graduate in biology and have a one-year post graduate diploma in computer applications.

Being a social person helps me establish better and healthier relationships and strengthens my belief that cooperation is the key asset for the success of any relationship.

I want to know whether I can get a job in BPO which tallies with my experience and belief. What does it take to excel at being a customer support executive?

- Smriti

I think your belief is great for the BPO industry as establishing relationships is the core of good customer service. 

For a BPO, though, especially one that deals with American or British clients, your spoken English will be very important. Improve your grammar and ability to communicate effectively, and you will be a star!  

Is it possible to do part-time shifts for two to three months in the summer? If yes, what would be the pay like?

I have been a student in Britain for last four years, and I have done my schooling here. Spoken or written English is no problem. I have also worked as an administrative assistant at a real estate company, which involved a lot of interaction with clients.

- Aruni Mukherjee

Although the staff turnover is pretty high in call centers, it may be difficult to get a job for only a few months, although this depends on the call centre. 

The pay also depends on the call centre and can range from Rs 10,000 to Rs 18,000 a month.

I suggest picking a list of 10 call centres. Spend a few days going to interviews and see what works best for you. 

I am a senior sales executive in the consumer goods industry in Hyderabad.

I have attended four BPO interviews and failed at them. The problem is, I get nervous and I am unable to pronounce the words correctly. I can pronounce those same words correctly with the friends. The panic situation starts 10 to 15 minutes before the interview.

How do I get rid of this panic? 

- Rao

Start enjoying your interviews. Seriously. Look forward to going to interviews; look forward to speaking; getting to know people and learning more about professional interviews.

Every interview you go to should be a learning experience. 

It is no big deal if you don't get a few jobs. But you should learn what you did wrong after each failed interview. As far as your nervousness, remember, your interviewer is just another person.

Look at it as if you are going to meet a friend. Keep it professional but keep it casual. You sound like a smart guy, so there is no reason for you to not be confident about yourself!

I am very confident when I speak one-on-one, but if I have to speak in a crowd, I get nervous and stammer. What can I do?

- Raj

Don't worry. Public speaking is hard for most people.

Try concentrating on an object or a person when in a crowd while you are speaking, and see if that helps you.

Watch other people who are good speakers speak. Notice what you like about the way they speak and incorporate these characteristics in your own delivery. 

I have always found that the best speakers are the ones who speak from their hearts. If you are really serious about improving your public speaking skills, I would suggest taking a class.     

I plan to go for an interview for a team leader's position.

Could you please tell me all that I need to keep in maind and the basic job of a team leader? Are there any web sites that can help?

- Aditya Rajiv

I am not sure about web sites, but I will give you a few tips.

First, as a team leader, your command and delivery of the English language needs to be strong. Brush up on your communication skills as they are very important at the TL level. 

In your interview, bring up any managerial and leadership positions you have held.

As a TL, you need to be able to motivate your team, deal with interpersonal issues and ensure that your team is meeting company expectations.

During your interview, bring up responsibilities you have held that touch upon these topics. Good luck!


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    Do you have a question for Nasha? Write to us!

    Nasha Fitter operates Fitter Solutions, a communication and training organisation with expertise in public and interpersonal communication.

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