What Types of Personality You Require For an Interview


Personality refers to those traits of the individual or those aspects of his behaviour that have emotional, motivational, or moral connotations such as stability, extrovertness, perseverance and honesty.

Some of the elements that would go into the assessment of personality are:

• Sharpness and alertness of mind; clarity and quality of thinking; sense of balance.

Strength of character; integrity in its widest sense which would include moral calibre.

• Ability to reason well; whether one can see and appreciate other’s point of view and then make up one’s mind; also, the soundness of one’s judgement.

Patterns of behaviour; whether one has positive attitudes and sympathetic approach.

• One’s social commitment, Common sense, Qualities of leadership and General appearance and manner. The tone, content and manner of one’s answers will provide clues to the various traits making up one’s total personality. It is true, of course, that one cannot really change one’s personality.

However, if one knows what to expect and is given some practical guidance, what one can do is to avoid certain pitfalls and adopt certain strategies. Which would help the interview going in one’s way and prevent undue exposure of one’s obvious weaknesses while subtly highlighting one’s strong points. This could well tilt the odds in the candidate’s favour.

Human personality is complex and it is very difficult to grade individuals precisely. An interview tries to grade the candidates so as to have a comparative idea of the individual’s suitability for the job. For that the interviewer tries to assess the following:

1) The physical attributes of an individual including his health and fitness, how he turns himself out, how he speaks and his manners with other people.

2) The individual’s cultural background, his experience at work, his expectations in job as determined by his way of life and the responsibilities shouldered.

3) The cognitive powers of the individual and the levels to which his intellectual and other abilities allow him to be trained.

4) The individual’s capacity for directing and the degree to which he seems realistic and successful in following up his goals.

5) The emotional side of the individual’s life, his stability and control, and the kind of role he may play naturally in the association of other people.

Most scientific interviews are conducted after taking great pains to draw out an inventory of personality traits that are critical to successful performance in a job. These lists vary from post to post. Not only individual traits but the importance of each would depend on the job content and the manner in which responsibilities have to be discharged by the incumbent of the post. Quite a few important elements of personality like poise and composure, liveliness, impact created on persons by one’s presence, qualities of leadership, initiative, drive, motivation, value system, etc., are required in varying degrees for various jobs.

Interview Preparation

An intelligent review of the duties and responsibilities assigned to the job should enable the candidate to draw out in advance, qualities that would be required for successful performance therein. For example, in a sales marketing job, the board will look for an extrovert who is a pleasant person, has poise and composure and who can be a convincing talker. Accordingly, they would look for evidence of these qualities in the interview situation as well as in the past performance.

There are different factors which rate an individual’s personality. Since they weigh high with the interviewers, a candidate should make conscious efforts to develop them to face the interviewer successfully:


It is reflected in the responsible attitude of the individual towards the society and his organisation. Whether he has any tendency to rationalise his failures or whether he can accept his limitations and live with them. Whether he was pampered as a child confined only to his immediate concerns.

Emotional stability

An individual must show emotional balance and mental health in the face of trying circumstances. He should maintain composure in frustration and not sulk in case of criticism. His ability to deal with the shortcomings of his juniors and interpersonal problems calmly and coolly are assessed. He should not allow his emotions to colour his judgement.


A person should place the accomplishments of the group ahead of his ambitions and not take credit. While he displays teamwork, he may try to emerge the willing leader commanding respect and affection from his teammates. He should be flexible, tol’serant and not opinionated.


His remarks should not be blunt, but considerate towards less endowed segments. In discussing his terms with his juniors, he should reflect genuine consideration for their feelings. He should be sensitive to others’ view. point so as not to antagonise them


It shows a person’s interest in a job in volving mixing with people and facing diverse situations, His mobility to different kinds of job situation without much difficulty is seen here.


The candidate should be tough-minded and should stand for the right. If a decision seems disadvantageous to some but good for the majority, he should go for it. He should not give impressions of being unnecessarily sympathetic and concerned about others’ feelings. He may delegate responsibilities and own up the performance.


It may appear in the tendency of a person to procrastinate unduly or to avoid civic responsibility. Even if conditioned by soft easy life, the candidate should show willingness to apply himself diligently to difficult and indifferent situations.

Initiative and drive

It means the ability of a person to function on self-start without guidance or supervision. He should have the willingness for new ideas and work and taking responsibility. Going beyond uniformity to fulfil a given task in a new and perhaps more efficient manner is appreciated.


It is the measure of the person’s perseverance against odds. Is he particular about the follow through? It is seen if he has the ability to continue with a job until it is completed and without any distraction; if he finds it difficult to complete tasks without team effort.


It is a reflection of realistic appraisal of one’s capabilities A candidate should show belief in himself and not be reluctant to take additional work for fear of failure. His ability to compete successfully with those of his age and built is judged.

Interview Preparation


It is rated on the impact a personality has. It’s bad if a person lets others take advantage of him because of lack of authority and aggressiveness. It is found out if he has been a leader in his school/college days. He should not be introvert or shy.


It is the inclination to do more than is actually required or given only to satisfy self-goals. Mood to work late hours is desirable, though not demanded. In sum, he should set, obey and achieve high personal standards of workmanship.

Hard work

It is the nature of a person not looking for an easy way out. His personality should reflect vigour and stamina and good health.

Honesty and sincerity

A person should not be oriented towards personal gain only. He should place loyalty to organisation on a high pedestal. He must have a clear conscience with total dedication.

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