If you haven't already listened to "Why This Kolaveri Di", please do so before you proceed any further:
If you have listened to it, then you contributed to the 18 million times this tamil movie song has been viewed in the last 23 days. Why this Kolaveri Di' offers important lessons (I am serious!) for all of us preparing for upcoming interviews and career changes
1. Highlight your strengths
The word "Kolaveri" is repeated 34 times in the song. Yes, 34 times in a 4 minute song. Like the song or hate the song, but its impossible to get that word out of your head once you have watched the full song.
At the end of a 30 minute interview, it is critical that the interviewer leaves the room with 1-2 words in his/her mind to describe you. Otherwise you will not stand out from your competition. It doesn't matter if you have topped your class, debating champ, state cricket player, national talent test winner etc etc. Unless you reiterate your 1-2 key strengths throughout the interview, you stand the risk of being washed out in a sea of words. A helpful practice is to write down a few things that you must absolutely convey during the interview. Keep that list in front of you during the interview and refer to it and make sure its done.
2. Structure your answers
In the song, Dhanush spends the first two minutes describing the girls state of mind (kolaveri). He then spends the next 40 seconds describing the girls looks (white skinu, heart blacku). The next 1 minute is spent on describing his own state of mind (kaila/handla glassu, empty lifeu).
Similarly, in your interviews, it is very important that you present your answers in a structured analytical manner. Don't confuse your interviewer by jumping from one topic to another. For example, the best way to answer a question such as "Why are you the best person for this job" is to say something like "I think this job needs expertise in 3 domains - a,b & c. I have expertise in 'a' because of experience 1, I have expertise in 'b' because of experience 2, I have expertise in 'c' because of experience 3. Hence I think I am qualified for this job". Your interviewer will appreciate the effort you are putting in to structure your answer and it also conveys that you have clarity of thought and are organized.
3. Add Appeal / Tell a Story
Can anyone tell me why is Shruti Hasan (the cute girl in olive green top) in this video ? I can understand Aishwarya Dhanush in the video even though she is not singing - she wrote the song. If I had to dare a guess, Shruti Hassan is an excellent image for the "white skinu girlu whose eyes meetu with soup boys"
If you are interviewing for a highly competitive job like the ones in finance, consulting etc, all your competitors are smart, well educated, articulate and hard-working. How are you going to stand out, so your interviewers remember you after meeting 100 other candidates - weave a story, tell them how your experiences have crafted you, why you and only you can help them conquer the world, show them a little bit of themselves in you, tell them why you think your higher purpose is their industry (it better be true, else your life will be miserable once you get the job!)
4. Keep it Simple
Boy meets girl, boy and girls eyes lock, boy thinks girl loves him, girl barely noticed him, boy is heart-broken!! "Why this Kolaveri Di" is based on a storyline that has unfailingly powered tens of thousands of movies, TV serials, books and articles.....not to forget thousands of real life stories that draw inspiration from these works.
Don't over-complicate your answers. Especially in industries such as finance and consulting where presentation is as important as content, it is really important that people understand what you are saying as against you saying a bunch of super-smart sounding stuff that your interviewer can't comprehend. A great way to implement this, is to start your answer with a couple of simple statements and then gradually build in complexity as you proceed with the answer. Your interviewer will stop you, if he/she has heard enough.
In the time it has taken you to read this article "Why this Kolaveri Di" has been viewed another 300,000 times on Youtube!