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Things Not to Do in UPSC Civil Services Interview: Your Path to Success

Things Not to Do in UPSC Civil Services Interview

The UPSC Civil Services Interview, also known as the Personality Test, marks the final stage of the prestigious UPSC examination. Your performance in the interview, combined with your scores in the Mains, significantly influences your chances of securing a spot on the final merit list for the IAS Exam. While numerous articles offer advice on what to do in an IAS interview, this article focuses on what NOT to do during this crucial phase. Before we dive into the “Don’ts” of the interview, it’s essential to understand what the UPSC board seeks in a candidate:

  1. Clarity of Expression: Your ability to articulate thoughts coherently.
  2. Grasp of Narrative or Argument: How well you can understand and present a storyline or argument.
  3. Reasoning Ability: Your capacity to reason and think critically.
  4. Appreciation of Different Viewpoints: Your ability to understand diverse perspectives.
  5. Awareness and Concern for Socio-economic Problems: Your knowledge of social issues and your concern for them.
  6. Range and Depth of Interests: The diversity and depth of your interests.
  7. Ability to Interact with People: Your interpersonal skills.
  8. Intelligence, Presence of Mind, Honesty, General Awareness, and Leadership Skills.

Now, let’s explore what you should avoid during your IAS interview:

Don’t Lose Time

It’s imperative not to wait until the UPSC Mains results are out to begin preparing for your personality test. Grooming yourself into a well-rounded candidate takes time and consistent effort. Commence your interview preparation early.

Don’t Lie

Honesty is the best policy. Providing false information can lead to consequences. Be truthful in your answers regarding personal details and hobbies. Be ready to justify your responses.

Don’t Panic

The UPSC interview can be an intimidating experience, even for the most courageous individuals. Stay well-prepared, remain focused, and answer questions to the best of your abilities. Don’t worry excessively about the outcome. Practice breathing exercises to stay calm under pressure.

Don’t Stop Reading Newspapers

After completing the UPSC prelims and mains, avoid lapsing into a ‘relax’ mode. Continue your habit of staying informed through newspapers. Current affairs knowledge remains essential for the interview, just as it was for the main exam.

Don’t Fake It

Authenticity matters. The experienced UPSC board members can discern genuine from artificial. Be yourself during the interview.

Don’t Blabber

Listen attentively to the questions and respond with measured, concise words. Avoid unnecessary rambling, as it can signify a lack of confidence or uncertain knowledge.

Don’t Speak Hastily

Take a few moments to organize your thoughts before responding. Rushed answers may lead to regrettable statements.

Don’t Argue

While you may have differing opinions, avoid engaging in extended arguments with board members, even when you strongly believe you’re correct. Unnecessary arguments can project rigidity.

Don’t Be Arrogant and Disrespectful

Express your thoughts with humility and respect, even if you’re confident in your views. Remember that the board members are experienced individuals and expect politeness.

Don’t Talk Too Much or Too Little

Strike a balance. Speaking too little might imply a lack of confidence or knowledge, while excessive talk can convey nervousness. Find the middle path.

Don’t Beat Around the Bush

Give direct, to-the-point answers. If you’re uncertain about a response, admit it. The UPSC board appreciates honesty.

Don’t Have Negative Body Language

Maintain a positive body language and demeanor. Your persona should radiate positivity and hope. Positivity is contagious.

Don’t Fidget

Fidgeting signifies nervousness and can be distracting to interviewers. Stay composed and calm.

Don’t Wear Inappropriate Clothes

Opt for formal and professional attire. It demonstrates seriousness and respect for the interview process.

Don’t Laugh Unnecessarily

Maintain an appropriate demeanor, even if humor is introduced. Excessive laughter may be perceived as insincerity. Also, avoid unnecessary jokes; your objective isn’t to make friends with the board.

As you prepare for your UPSC Civil Services Interview, keep these “Don’ts” in mind. By avoiding these pitfalls, you’ll be better equipped to navigate the interview successfully and make a lasting impression on the UPSC board.

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