The following post is courtesy Rohit Kapoor... thanks dude.
Rohit has suggested two very useful frameworks which can be used during PI to generate the 'wow' ;D factor. Read on...
[Rohit's comments --]
I was reflecting on the PI rounds that I conducted and somehow found that the 'wow' factor was missing. The common link was that I could not understand the "so what?" of the answers. In other words the question which came to my mind was "so what is great about this particular thing". I think the challenge-action-impact framework will help in answeing PI questions especially around leadership, team work etc.
Challenge - Describe succintly what were the circumstances which made the job/experience difficult. This gets the interviewers attention.
Action - This part is essentially "what did you do?". This allows the interviewer to appreciate your problem solving and leadership capabilities.
Impact - Anything one does is meaningless unless it impacts something - client, internal processes, colleagues, team etc. Describing the impact tells the interviewer that you are an achiever. Also use a FROM-TO approach within this section. E.g. "The market share in this product category went up from 42 to 45% as a result of these initiatives".
Some other observations:
Please avoid using bombastic terminology like "passion for excellence", "amazing leadership capabilities !!" in describing yourself. You are really setting yourself up for trouble because after you have used such extreme superlatives, your examples better be damn good. Words like "committed", "person who can take end-to-end responsibility" are more likely to be believed and examples can back these up.
Lastly, please please do not give cop-out answers on "What are your weaknesses" question. Answers which are complete disasters are "I work so hard ... I multi-task so much that I fail to prioritize ..... I dont know how to strike work-life balance ..... I am too analytical". The interviewer is out to recruit a human being and not god !! One good answer which I got was "I am a slow starter ..this can be a handicap in consulting .. however I was given this feedback in my last job .... this is what I have done to get better at this"