- Interviewing with Indian resources is a challenging experience.
- This article describes the characteristic limitations when being interviewed by Indians.
Introduction: Indian Interview
Domestic US workers increasingly have to interview with Indian resources. Usually, the effect of interviewing is negative for US workers for two reasons.
- Indians tend to apply their cultural orientation and knowledge management approach to domestic workers.
- Indians actively discriminate against non-Indian workers.
You will learn how Indian interviewers will gaslight non-Indian interviewees to check the box that they interviewed non-Indians before they go and hire an Indian.
Our References for This Article
To see our references for this article and related Brightwork articles, visit this link.
Experiences with Indian Interviews
The following was communicated to us by a reader.
Knowing How the Interview Will Go Right Off of the Bat and Getting “Grilled”
You can pretty much tell when walking into an interview room how it’s going to go that day. If they are happy and cheerful and ask you to walk them through your resume then things are good. If they are open to you asking them questions then things are good.
If they are in a bad mood or actively hostile or it feels like an interrogation then you already know that’s its not going to go well and you might as well go home then put up with their abuse.
This is not just when Indians interview non-Indians but also when Indians interview Indians. In Indian culture, it is considered perfectly normal to “grill” the interviewee. Welcome to the Indian interview. Indians may have immigrated away from India. However, they behave the same way they did back in India, even though Indian behavior has led to nothing but dysfunction in India.
Language Issues Are Assigned to the English as a First Language Speaker
Meanwhile, Indians demonstrably have a weaker understanding of English than educated Americans and have a much less understandable accent. Indians presume that their English is excellent and that any problem understanding their English is the first language speaker’s fault. This fits into the pattern where Indians enjoy not only faking technical skills (as we cover in the article How Indians Coordinate to Falsify IT Certifications)
This is also explained in the following quotation.
Many times they will have very heavy accents. If you say that you didn’t understand they seem to get offended. Most people from European backgrounds would have no problem rephrasing their question with different words. The Indians will repeat back to you exactly what they just said the first time.
This fits into the pattern demonstrated by many Indians, who will ask the same question four times. Again, the problem in understanding is always on the listener’s part.
The quote continues.
Aside from soft voices, mumbling and language barriers they expect you to give them answers that are phrased EXACTLY the way they memorized the answers. The huge problem with this is that there can be many ways to learn and understand topics that can even include using different notations. I’ve even tried to explain a few times that in chemistry there can be like 5 different names for the same chemical compound, and so in this context, I might know the concept they are asking but with different notation or vocabulary. That never helps. If you don’t repeat back to them the EXACT words from the Coursera slide they memorized then you get it wrong.
Oh and they never tell you the correct answer.
The Indian education system is more based upon rote memorization than Western systems. The overall culture is strongly hierarchical, creating challenging and uncomfortable environments for people who grew up in any Western country.
India as a Cultural Dead Zone Concerning Behavioral Expectations
Many Indian work environments are abusive, as we cover in the article How the Awful Indian Employment System Works. Indians consider it completely normal to mistreat employees. India has never developed a concept of human rights, freedom of speech, or even non-slavery, as slavery is widely practiced throughout India. And there is no movement to reduce slavery or slavery-like conditions. India’s horrible state is one reason why so many Indians seek their H1-B visa and citizenship — but the problem comes when they seem to bring this abusive work culture to every Western country where they emigrate.
Indians will complain mightily when they are abused but generally support abuse if they benefit from the abuse. The concept is that India is so competitive that if you don’t abuse others, you become abused. However, when Indians immigrate from India, again, they apply this same scarcity mentality. This is also why Indians are terrible customers. As customers, they view it as their privilege to “chisel” the company providing them with a service.
Insensitive to Requests on the Part of the Interviewee
Job interviews have a natural power imbalance. However, when being interviewed by Indians, numerous domestic US resources describe how Indian interviewees seem to go out of their way to magnify the power imbalance. The following quotation is a perfect example of this.
People from other parts of the world usually give you some feedback, especially with coding interviews. I had a recent tech interview with Twitter. The connection was terrible. This guy was in a very small room with walls that bounced sound all over. He was also on speaker phone which I’m pretty sure was also as far away from him as possible. I could barely understand him with all of the above. Secondly, he had a heavy accent. I told him five times that the volume on my phone was maxed out and I could barely hear him. I kept asking him to call me directly on a real phone. He didn’t believe me about the sound quality and wanted to start on the problem.
This behavior can be a power trip on the part of the Indian, but it can also be sabotage on the part of the Indian. As we cover in the article How Indian IT Workers Discriminate Against Non-Indian Workers, Indians have shown an international pattern of discriminating against non-Indians. Brightwork Research & Analysis receives feedback on the Indian worker issue from all over the globe. The pattern is not merely limited to Indian versus white, as we receive discrimination from Asia by Asians and Asians in the US and Europe against Indians.
A Sucker Punch for US Domestic Workers
When the H1-B program has rigged by lobbyists and billionaires, as we cover in the articles, Why Do So Many Billionaires Love the H1-B Worker Visa? And Why Are 47 Entities Lobbying in Favor of the H.R.1044 IT Immigration Bill to allow massive numbers of Indians into the US? It was never discussed that discrimination in favor of Indians and specific Indian castes against other castes and certain regions of Indians versus other Indians is entirely accepted in India.
Clarification Questions Can be a Source of Conflict
In American culture, it is typically accepted that the interviewee can ask clarification questions. However, Indian culture often does not allow for this or sees this as challenging to the interviewer’s position.
This is very easy to trace to the hierarchy of the Indian culture.
In Indian culture, the person in the position of power is not to be questioned by the one with lower power — and this is true on many occasions when this questioning is intended to provide the interviewer with the information they need to answer the question, as is illustrated in the following quotation.
I asked him is this going to be Python, SQL, Pandas? That’s a legitimate clarification question that ANY interviewer should tell you (and the next interviewer did). This interviewer said I was not allowed to ask questions until he read the entire problem statement.
Strategies for Dealing with Hostile Interviewers
Most US interviews between domestic US interviewees and domestic US interviewers are not hostile. However, when Indians are the interviewers, hostile interviews are pretty common. As we pointed out earlier, there is a culture of “grilling” interviewers in Indian culture, which also happens when both participants are Indian. It is difficult to determine how much this is ratcheted up when the interviewer is a domestic US worker because we also receive complaints from Indians about the interview process. However, when the interview goes hostile, it is important to have a strategy for dealing with it and know that a decent percentage of interviews by Indian interviewers will be hostile.
If someone is hostile, abusive or can’t communicate properly — I’ve learned to end the video/voice call within the first 5 or 10 min of the interview and message the recruiter RIGHT away. You can tell the recruiter that the sound quality was terrible and ask to reschedule. With larger companies, this helps roll the dice and hopefully, you will get someone from a European background the next time.
Better yet — pre-screen your interviewers by name and just make up reasons for rescheduling a couple times until you get someone from a European or Asian background.
Our contact mostly does what he can to avoid being interviewed by Indians. We need to reiterate at this point that Indians, who are almost all recent immigrants to the US, are viewed as hostile to non-Indians to the degree that an individual from any other racial group is considered preferable.
US Companies With Significant Percentages of Indians Are Now Bocking Out Non-Indian Employment in IT
“I started noticing that 99% of the interviewing managers at a particular client, a large corporation, were Indian. I also started noticing that 99% of all my fellow vendors were Indian as well. I thought it was strange but I was new to servicing a client in the Bay Area. After ages of watching top-notch candidates get rejected with no reason or false reasons, especially my white and asian candidates, I knew something was up. The candidates all said the feedback (when we got it) made no sense, that the interviewer was rude to them, that the interview was impossibly short, heavy accent was challenging, questions were surface level etc. They were just staging these “interviews” to try and cover their rears, so they could hire their fellow Indians.”
Again, this is another particular charge. Any interview can be rigged simply by the questions one candidate asks versus another if the intent is only to hire the Indian candidate.
These quotes demonstrate a vast disconnect between cultures. And the problem is that US citizens are being asked to adapt to the Indian culture, which is quite unfair to US citizens.
Is this what US workers were told was going to happen when the whole H1-B circus got started? Of course not. US citizens face massive discrimination and poor treatment by a group of individuals who are considered politically incorrect to call out. And if one does pass the interview and is hired, the “prize” ends up being an Indian boss, which is another terrible experience.
Indians Can Only Be Victims and Never Victimizers?
Furthermore, the overall topic of adjustment on US citizens is undiscussed in the literature around H1-Bs. Everything is centered on discussing the need for “skills” without considering the effect on US workers. Essentially, the narrative is that Indians show up and fill positions for a “skill shortage.” And then that is it. That there would be no impact on the domestic worker.
This has proven to be false.
Indian IT Survey Results
To see our ongoing survey, which includes graphs of responses and specific comments from domestic workers all over the world who have had to work with Indians, see the website indianitsurvey.com
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