From ‘Shortlisted’ to ‘Not selected’ to ‘Hired’

This article originally appeared on LinkedIn, and was written by Pratik Lahiri.


I’ve been a lousy engineer and realized the importance of self-awakening after the results of my first semester at school. Since then I took up the path of internships to explore myself and interned at 7 organizations throughout my college life. In my final year, I started applying for jobs in marketing. Since everything driven by data is so hyped up right now, I’ll share the data I’ve collected and subsequently, talk through my experience — How I landed my dream job at LinkedIn.

After analyzing the numbers related to searching for an internship, the math turns out to be:

  • 9.09% probability of an application turning into an interview.
  • 1.8% probability of an application turning into an offer.
  • 20% probability of an interview turning into an offer.

Oh! The possibilities

In this post, I’ll only talk about LinkedIn. My aspiration to work there started way back in 2015 through LinkedIn MTV Get A Job Season 1, where I learned about how to start my career amongst 12 of the biggest and most exclusive brands in India.

I applied in both Season 1 and 2 and never received a response either time. The dream of starting big was slowly fading away for me, and then I decided to click in for Season 3.

February 28, 2017, Bangalore: “Hi Pratik, Congratulations! You’ve been shortlisted for the next round at LinkedIn. You interview is scheduled on the 1st of March at 8:30 AM in Mumbai.

And the journey starts…

I prepared in a hurry and traveled to Mumbai for the #TheWayIn round. This is when I learned that I made it to the top 10 among 45k applicants.

Lights! Camera! Interview!

Change is scary, but embracing change for the better is what we strive for. #TheWayIn round put my mettle to test, and I was given different situations to solve, new ideas to present to the brand, etc.

Are we there yet?

March 20, 2017: Congratulations! You’ve made it to top 5. You’re invited for your final round at LinkedIn HQ in Bangalore.

Shit! I made it. But there’s a long way to go from here, and my mind couldn’t stop asking questions. What should I do? How should I prepare for the big day? Do I know enough? Am I qualified enough to actually get a job there? What have I done to arrive here?

Even the greats can be improved on

April 8, 2017, LinkedIn HQ Bangalore: “You can’t do it if you don’t believe you can, and you can’t do it alone.”

I finally stepped into the LinkedIn office. I noticed the in-bug embedded on the wall, and I was nervous as heck. But the beautiful LinkedIn office took away all the nervousness, and I started feeling much more comfortable after a couple moments.

After meeting the other 4 finalists, we were thrown into the first round: Develop a 1-minute video on how to make a rock star LinkedIn profile. With zero experience in video-making, I ventured into online research and found a few tools to make animated videos. The key to any good video is the storyboard. I divided 90 minutes into 15minutes of research, 30 minutes storyboarding, 30 minutes for framing and the last 15minutes for background audio and voice overs.

The video presentation was followed by a Q/A by the consumer marketing and product marketing managers of LinkedIn. After which 2 candidates were selected for the final PI and a face-off round.

The Q/A round was more focused on understanding my knowledge in marketing and my thought process for different campaigns.

Moving to the PI round, I believe it was one of my best conversations I’ve ever had in an interview. I really got to know the manager and HR, and they got to know me pretty well throughout the interview also.

The last round was a bit unexpected, yet exciting. Both of us ( 2 finalists) were asked the same set of questions back to back. It surely was intimidating but the challenge to come up with a better answer in minutes really kept me going.

After a nerve-wracking couple minutes…

I ended up landing my dream job at LinkedIn!


Here are 5 tips for anyone seeking opportunities post-college.

1. Be your best salesperson

You are always selling, whether it be a skill, product, brand — or yourself. Knowing how to apply that to your own personal brand is the key to gaining recognition.

2. Take risks

Learning how to put yourself out there is absolutely necessary. Keep pushing the boundaries of your comfort zone, and rewards will follow.

3. Build one killer skill

When you’ve got a myriad of talents, it’s easy to feel overqualified for a number of roles — but also at the same time to feel underqualified for many others.

4. Meet new people — network

Make it a point to maintain your curiosity for meeting new people and increasing your network; The best learnings come from conversations, not textbooks.

5. Stop overthinking everything

The best way to approach all this uncertainty, however, is simply by taking things as they go, rather than overthinking each action every step of the way.

Life @ LinkedIn

It has been about 2months since I started working in the awesome Mumbai office of LinkedIn India. There is so much to talk about, that I will need to write another post about it.

Thanks for reading

“You will get nowhere if you can’t put your faith in yourself to accomplish what you’ve started”.

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