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Interview Questions

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Ellen Bruce

on 27 May 2015

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Transcript of Interview Questions

Tell me about yourself?
some examples of what you might be faced with in your interview and some suggestions on how to respond...
Why should I hire you?
What are your strengths?
Why do you want to work here?
What are your weaknesses?
How do you handle conflict at work?
What is your greatest Achievement
in Life?
What did you like best about your last job? or current job?
What did you like least about your old job? or your current job?
What do you do in your spare time?
Tell me about your experience with this type of work.
What are your long­term goals? What do you hop to be doing in 5 years?
Why are you leaving your
current job?
Where do you see yourself in 5 years time?
What else do you think I should know about you?
How would your manager and co-workers describe you?
Do you have any questions?
What the employer is asking:
What kind of person are you?
Are you going to fit into my company?
Do you have the right personality?
How to answer:
tell about the school you attend
a brief summary of your employment and volunteer experience
general info about hobbies and interests (not extra detail, just overview
this gives you the opportunity to get a bit personal, but you're not buddies...
What the employer is asking:
Are you confident? Can you sell yourself? Talk me into this? Do you really want this job? Why should I hire you instead of someone else?
How to answer:
Be straightforward and confident about your abilities
"I am a fast learner, I had to learn a totally new operating system in my last job and I was up and running within a couple of weeks."
Highlight the reasons why you are the right candidate
When answering interview questions like this, don't try to say that you are the best qualified candidate, you are not familiar with the other candidates' skills and experience. Focus on your suitability.
Be enthusiastic about why you want this job
Confirm your ability to work hard
What the employer is asking:
How well do you manage yourself?
How well do you work with others?
Can you talk about yourself in a professional manner
How would you answer this one?
What the employer is asking:
Trick question!! The employer is testing your ability to self evaluate. Are you able to identify a weakness, yet show how it remains to be a positive quality and how you are improving yourself?
How to answer:
For example, it you think that you are fairly serious you might say “Although others consider me to be somewhat serious at times, I think that I am reliable and I consider my options when making a decision.”
What the employer is asking:
Are you just looking for any job or are you serious about this company
do you know anything about this company?
How to answer:
compliment the company and their reputation (only good things here)
do you have a personal connection with the company? do you shop there? eat there?
Wow them with your knowledge of the company, products, any good stuff you can find out to impress them with your knowledge
What the employer is asking:
How do you react to conflict and how do you manage it. Focus your answer on the behavioral process that you use to resolve the conflict.
Don't talk about how difficult your boss or co-workers are and how hard it is to work with them. This portrays you as someone who does not get on easily with other people.
Use your answer to highlight your interpersonal skills, your maturity and your ability to stay calm in the face of difficulty.
How to answer:
"Everyone has to deal with conflict at some point. I have found that when there is conflict it helps to try and put yourself in the other person's shoes and understand their perspective. It is important to ask questions and listen to their point of view. If you know what their interpretation of the situation is, then it is easier to work out a solution. For example.... (give a specific example of a conflict situation and how you dealt with it)."
What the employer is asking:
Choose an achievement that is related to the position and is fairly recent.
How to answer:
If you have little or no work experience, refer to an accomplishment at school or in an outside activity.
Just remember to relate the skills you used to the job in question.
"I was part of the rowing team that recently won the championships. It was a particularly satisfying win as we had trained very hard, requiring a lot of discipline and perseverance, to come up from the bottom of the league.
We also really had to work together as a team and keep each other motivated"
It is often difficult to single out one achievement when answering this question.
"I believe I have had a number of successes to date. It is difficult to say which I think has been my greatest accomplishment as they were all important. I am going to focus on my recent achievements as being the most pertinent..."
What the employer is asking:
The interviewer wants to evaluate your compatibility with the position you are interviewing for. Make your answer relevant to the job requirements.
How to answer:
General reasons such as new challenges, interacting with people, growth and learning opportunities, using your initiative, working as part of a team and meeting set objectives and goals are usually applicable to most job opportunities.
Highlight the reason and make it more specific by quoting an example.
"I enjoyed having to use my initiative. I have implemented and improved a number of the systems including the order processing system."
What the employer is asking:
Be careful that the dislikes you talk about do not refer to specific characteristics of the job opportunity you are interviewing for.
Don't quote reasons such as overtime and salary.
Avoid criticism of your boss, management or co-workers.
Be general and refer to the lack of or absence of what you seek in a job or work environment.
Possible answers:
"There was very little opportunity for me to use my initiative. This is one of my strengths and found it frustrating that I was unable to put my skills to work to implement any improvements. That is why I am enthusiastic about working for a smaller company like this which I know encourages employees to use their initiative."
"There was a lack of growth opportunities in such as small company. One of the reasons I am so interested in your company is that it is a much larger organization with formal career planning structures in place."
This way you emphasize why you are a suitable candidate for this job and company as well as turning it into a compliment to the company you are interviewing with.
Example Answers:
"I want to have developed new skills and abilities and to have made the most of my opportunities. This position will give me the opportunity to learn more about managing a work team, this is a goal of mine. I would like to be recognized as an individual who has really added value to the team and the company"
"I want to have learned and grown within my work, to have increased my responsibilities and skills. I enjoy a challenge and would like to know that I am constantly meeting new challenges. My goal is to be the best at whatever level I am working at within the company"
How to answer:
Be straightforward but avoid negative comments about past employers in the job interview.
Don't bad-mouth the company, your manager or colleagues, it puts you in a bad light. Keep it positive and make the reason for a leaving a constructive one such as a new challenge, exciting opportunity, increased responsibility or learning possibility.
"I have reached the ceiling in my particular job and I am ready for more responsibility"
"After a number of years in my last position I am now looking for a new experience where I can contribute and develop in a bigger environment"
What the employer is asking:
An employer wants to know that they have hired a student who is committed to their future and plans to make something of themselves.
They may also be questioning how long you plan to work with the company after they invest in training you.
How to answer:
Be sure to tell the employer about plans for post­secondary education and occupational dreams.
Also reaffirm your interest in staying with that company to increase your skill set and make a positive impact while with them.
What the employer is asking:
The employer wants to know about any relevant experience that you have.
How to answer:
If you have no experience, then you need to begin volunteering your time to increase your personal portfolio.
Spruce up your answer by listing transferable skills that you have obtained at home and through school and show how they relate to the position.
When summarizing previous experience, explain experience first by stating your position title and the company name, followed by a general description of what you were responsible for and what you were particularly good at.
Remember, use action oriented words to catch the employer’s attention.
What do you think the employer is asking? Why would an interviewer ask this question?
How would you suggest answering this?
What the employer is asking:
This interview question is all about your self awareness. Do you know how you come cross and how you are perceived in the workplace? Do you understand your strengths and weaknesses? Do you ask for and receive feedback? Make sure your answer focuses on work related characteristics. The interviewer is not really interested in what a great dancer you are!
How to answer:
In your job interview answer describe the good points and perceptions but also discuss one or two areas that you are aware need attention. Emphasize what you have done to improve on these areas. This makes your answer both real and insightful.
When you refer to the positive characteristics, support your answer with a quote or paraphrase from one or two of your colleagues.
For example: "I know they consider me to be hard working. In fact, the other team members often thanked me for the extra hours I put in."
Then move on to the areas for improvement.
Do not leave the interview without making a few inquiries of your own! Asking a minimum of 3 questions
reinforces your interest in the position.
Ask questions like:
When will I hear from you?
What qualities are you looking for in the successful candidate?
What kind of training is involved?
How did you get started in the business?
Does this company participate in community events?
What do you think the employer is asking? Why would an interviewer ask this question?
How would you suggest answering this?
The Last Big Question...
Full transcript