Hello everyone, I’m Rajgauri Sadanand Vedpathak from Kolhapur. I am Studying in final year of mechanical engineering. I am a stammerer since childhood. Today, I am really happy to share that I have got a job in SLK Softwares in Bangalore through placement cell in my campus.
But, it was a lot different before.. I had lost all confidence in first year and therefore I was worried about getting a job. I used to think that I need to give 20-25 interviews and face many rejections till I get selected. I was scared of rejection. Many of my friends joined coaching classes in third year to train themselves in aptitude and communication skills for better placement offers. But, I never joined any. I thought, “what if everyone laugh at me in the class?”, “What if someone would say, “you are not a deserving person to get a job”, because of poor communication.” So, I was very nervous to sit for placements.
After coming back from National Conference, I started walking the path of SELF-ACCEPTANCE and when our department’s TPO (Training & Placement Officer) informed us about the campus drive that is going to happen on 5th October, I was mentally prepared. Since it was a pool-campus, there were students from near about 8 colleges, from varying branches, including Mechanical, IT, Computer Science and Electronics. The first round was aptitude test. I attempted 75% questions correctly in the allotted time. I was quite sure regarding my shortlisting in next round. The result of test got declared after two hours. The company professionals were announcing names of students who cleared the test. They selected around 136 out of 500 and I was one of the shortlisted candidate!!!!!! After that, we went through a pre-placement talk where they shared few details about the organization. I was so mesmerized by everything, that I secretly wished to get that job and start working there (also, Bangalore is my dream city from childhood!).
Thereafter, the most important rounds- Technical and HR were scheduled. We were asked to come one by one for technical interview. Given it was my first interview, I was feeling very nervous. As few of my friends came out of the interview, we started asking them about the pattern of questions that the interviewer asked them. Everyone said different things. Then, my turn came. I started walking towards the cabin and asked for the permission to enter in room. Mr. Vijyendra was seating there, he asked me to sit. Then, he started by asking, “How are you?”. Since I was drenched in nervousness, I think, he could have sensed it. He tried to make me calm through his words. He told me to introduce myself. I confessed to him that I Stammer. He said, “ no issues, go on.” I continued to introduce myself. After some time, I became comfortable in answering the questions and I didn’t even realize that I was communicating very well. I tried my best to speak whatever I thought is needed.I left no stone untouched. Finally, the interview got over and he asked me if I had any questions for him. I had two questions and I asked the questions clearly. He answered them well. In this way, my first technical interview went well. I stammered but it didn’t matter much as I answered almost all questions clearly. Following this, I was called for the second technical round. Mr. Vishnu took that interview. Though everything was same as the technical interview, the questions were more about my project and IT stuff. After the interview, I was told to approach the HR. I couldn’t believe it! It meant, I had cleared both the interview rounds. Well, I didn’t have much time to get emotional as I require to go to the HR, immediately.
Mr. Rahul took the HR interview. I again mentioned about my stammering to him. As HR interview is a kind of personal interview, he asked me questions like, “What steps did you take for curing your stammering?”, “How do your parents react to this?”, “How has it affected your life”, etc. Here, I told him about TISA and NC 2018. Then he asked me, “What did you learn from the conference?” and I firmly said, “ACCEPTANCE”. In that moment, I felt I cleared the interview. He asked few more general questions pertaining to my take on Information Technology, Internet of things, etc. After that he said, “Let me tell you 1 thing, if we select you today, it will be because of your skills and genuineness, not because of your stammering.” And I said, “I never used my stammering as my advantage.” His next lines are still running in my mind. He said, “Congratulations Rajgauri, You Have Got This Job.” For the next two minutes, though he was speaking something, but his words didn’t hit my ears because I got so emotional at that moment, I couldn’t believe that I had made it that far! I could only say, “Thanks” to him, gave a firm handshake and left.
After that, I called my parents and they were really happy and proud of me. I could sense the joy through their voice.
One thing I noticed about the interviewers, all of them supported me, encouraged me to speak, understood the fact that I stammer, and most importantly that it is not my fault. Every body showed how much they respect talent and genuineness. I also learnt that good communication skills doesn’t mean fluency. If the concept that we are explaining is well understood by the listener then it is indeed good communication.
As a stammerer, never in my dreams had I thought that I will get a job such early that too through campus placement (given there are many grilling interviews). I faced a job interview for the first time, that too with such a great level of confidence. I think, real credit goes to NC 2018. If I hadn’t been a part of NC, I would not be able to tell them, ‘I am a stammerer’ and might end up hiding it which would have made the situation more complex. Thanks everyone. Thank you very much. 🙂
And yes, it is not an end. It is the beginning. I have a long way to go. I am trying to improve myself including my communication. I have got a job but that doesn’t mean that I should stop learning. There is a long way ahead. Most importantly, I will keep believing in myself forever and ever!