Be Your Best When Asked the Most Common Job Interview Questions!
Bring your best self — Rested, hydrated, nourished, practiced, focused.
Top Interview Questions, and the Top Answers that Impress Potential Employers:
Q: Tell me about yourself.
A: Identify some of your best attributes and positive qualities. Ask those who know you best to help you come up with your most beneficial characteristics. In the interview, describe your volunteer contributions, career history, and range of skills learned from paid and unpaid work related experiences, emphasizing those skills relevant to the job you are applying for.
Q: What are your greatest achievements?
A: Come up with one or two work-related and fairly recent accomplishments. What are the skills you bring from your successes, and relate them to how they might benefit the company you wish to work for.
Q: Are you happy with your life choices to date?
A: This question is geared to reveal your self-esteem, confidence and career aspirations. “Yes,” is the answer they are looking for, followed by a short description of what you are happiest about. If you are not really happy in your present position, or you feel unsatisfied in general, focus on the positive choices you are making to turn things around.
Q: What is the hardest situation you’ve faced, and how did you overcome it?
A: Your response will show prospective employers whether you can overcome your emotions to exercise logic in relation to problem-solving. In order to show yourself in a positive light, select a difficult situation which you did not initiate. Explain how you saw the problem, what the options were, why you selected the solution you did, and what the outcome was. Explain how you made lemonade out of lemons.
Q: What do you like about your current job? (If you have one.)
A: Your wisest answer would make sure your likes correspond with the requirements of the job you’re applying for. Show enthusiasm. Describe your current position as interesting, but don’t overdo. Otherwise, they may wonder why you’re looking to leave if things are so good.
Q: What do you dislike the most about your present position?
A: Don’t use this as a venting place. If you draw attention to numerous weaknesses, you may be viewed as a chronic complainer. Give your answer with an attitude that shows you as someone who takes problems in stride, knowing there is no perfect job. They all have their flaws.
Q: What are your strengths?
A: You must prepare your answer in advance. Concentrate on three or four strong-suits, but try to avoid the cliche’s. i.e. “I’m a fast learner. I’m a people person.” Focus on changing things up a bit. “I see details others often miss, and it helps me solve problems quickly. I believe working with people is a key to success, and working against them will set you up for failure.” Show a positive attitude, and your willingness to pursue common goals.
Q: What is your greatest weakness?
A: One of the most common, and frankly most foolish answers is, “I can’t think of any right now.” Prepare ahead of time to offer an honest and insightful response. Be authentic, but do not overtell. This is definitely a case where saying less is more.
Q: Why do you want to leave your current job?
A: It is perfectly fine to explain you need a new challenge or change of environment. Do not express negativity in your response. Money is not an appropriate answer — it can make you look self-centered, not a good candidate quality.
Q: Why are you interested in working here?
A: The employer is looking for evidence that you are a good job fit. Not only in the day-to-day operations, but that your long-term goals and vision are equally well matched. Make sure you have a good understanding of the roles and responsibilities of the position you are applying for, and your core values align with the attributes of the organization.
Other questions to consider:
- How does your job fit in to your department and company?
- What do you enjoy about this industry?
- Give an example of when you have worked under pressure.
- What kinds of people do you like working with?
- Give me an example of when your work was criticized.
- Give me an example of when you have felt anger at work. How did you cope and did you still perform a good job?
- What kind of people do you find it difficult to work with?
- Give me an example of when you have had to face a conflict of interest at work.
- Tell me about the last time you disagreed with your boss.
- Give me an example of when you haven’t got on with others.
- Do you prefer to work alone or in a group? Why?
- This organization is very different to your current employer – how do you think you are going to fit in?
- What are you looking for in a company?
- How do you measure your own performance?
- What kind of pressures have you encountered at work?
- Are you a self-starter? Give me examples to demonstrate this?
- What changes in the workplace have caused you difficulty and why?
- How do you feel about working long hours and/or weekends?
- Give me an example of when you have been out of your depth.
- What have you failed to achieve to date?
- What can you bring to this organization?