Your Job Interview: Questions and Answers

Need Answers to the Top 10 Interview Questions?
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Rarely do candidates come to the end of an interview feeling they've done their best. Maybe the conversation went in an unexpected direction. Maybe the interviewer focused on one aspect of their skills and totally ignored other key attributes. Or maybe candidates started the interview nervous and hesitant, and now wish they could go back and better describe their qualifications and experience. Plus, think of it this way: Your goal as an interviewer is to learn as much as you possibly can about every candidate, so don't you want to give them the chance to ensure you do?

Just make sure to turn this part of the interview into a conversation, not a soliloquy. Don't just passively listen and then say, "Thanks.

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We'll be in touch. Ask for examples. And of course if you're asked this question Job boards, general postings, online listings, job fairs But a candidate who continues to find each successive job from general postings probably hasn't figured out what he or she wants to do -- and where he or she would like to do it.

So don't just explain how you heard about the opening. Show that you heard about the job through a colleague, a current employer, by following the company Employers don't want to hire people who just want a job; they want to hire people who want a job with their company. Now go deeper. Don't just talk about why the company would be great to work for; talk about how the position is a perfect fit for what you hope to accomplish, both short-term and long-term.

And if you don't know why the position is a perfect fit Life is too short. Here's an interview question that definitely requires an answer relevant to the job. If you say your biggest achievement was improving throughput by 18 percent in six months but you're interviewing for a leadership role in human resources Instead, talk about an underperforming employee you "rescued," or how you overcame infighting between departments, or how so many of your direct reports have been promoted The goal is to share achievements that let the interviewer imagine you in the position -- and see you succeeding.

Conflict is inevitable when a company works hard to get things done. Mistakes happen. Sure, strengths come to the fore, but weaknesses also rear their heads. And that's OK. No one is perfect. But a person who tends to push the blame -- and the responsibility for rectifying the situation -- onto someone else is a candidate to avoid. Hiring managers would much rather choose candidates who focus not on blame but on addressing and fixing the problem.

Every business needs employees who willingly admit when they are wrong, step up to take ownership for fixing the problem, and, most important, learn from the experience. But that doesn't mean you have to make up an answer.

Interview Questions

You can learn something from every job. You can develop skills in every job. Work backward: Identify things about the job you're interviewing for that will help you if you do land your dream job someday, and then describe how those things apply to what you hope to someday do. And don't be afraid to admit that you might someday move on, whether to join another company or -- better -- to start your own business. Employers no longer expect "forever" employees.

But first, remember every interview is different

Let's start with what you shouldn't say or, if you're the interviewer, what are definite red flags. Don't talk about how your boss is difficult. Don't talk about how you can't get along with other employees. Don't bad-mouth your company.

The top nine tricky interview questions and how to answer them

Instead, focus on the positives a move will bring. Talk about what you want to achieve. Talk about what you want to learn. Talk about ways you want to grow, about things you want to accomplish; explain how a move will be great for you and for your new company.

Complaining about your current employer is a little like people who gossip: If you're willing to speak badly of someone else, you'll probably do the same to me.

Maybe you love working alone So take a step back and think about the job you're applying for and the company's culture because every company has one, whether intentional or unintentional. If a flexible schedule is important to you, but the company doesn't offer one, focus on something else.

If you like constant direction and support and the company expects employees to self-manage, focus on something else. Find ways to highlight how the company's environment will work well for you -- and if you can't find ways, don't take the job, because you'll be miserable. The goal of this question is to evaluate the candidate's reasoning ability, problem-solving skills, judgment, and possibly even willingness to take intelligent risks.

Having no answer is a definite warning sign. Everyone makes tough decisions, regardless of their position. My daughter worked part-time as a server at a local restaurant and made difficult decisions all the time -- like the best way to deal with a regular customer whose behavior constituted borderline harassment. A good answer proves you can make a difficult analytical or reasoning-based decision -- for example, wading through reams of data to determine the best solution to a problem.

A great answer proves you can make a difficult interpersonal decision, or better yet a difficult data-driven decision that includes interpersonal considerations and ramifications. Making decisions based on data is important, but almost every decision has an impact on people as well. The best candidates naturally weigh all sides of an issue, not just the business or human side exclusively.

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This is a tough question to answer without dipping into platitudes. We all want to put our best foot forward in a job interview, so discussing our weaknesses can be awkward.

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Like the greatest strengths question, employers ask this to evaluate your levels of self-awareness and your knack for self-improvement. A recruiter asks this question to give you a chance to focus on your most relevant skills and strengths. By hiring me, you would be bringing in a manager who has a proven track record of galvanizing customer service teams who improve customer satisfaction year-over-year. In addition to the usual postcard reminder, I sent out a series of email reminders and incorporated a call to action in our weekly newsletter.

As a result, membership and retention improved by more than 25 percent over the previous year. Retention is important to employers; this question is a way for them to determine how likely you are to stay in the role to which you are applying for a reasonable length of time. It is also a way for them to determine how much thought you have given to your career path. Your organization seems to offer employees room to grow internally, which is something that I really value. It was this kind of expertise that helped my former employer, La Chat, make a name for itself and increase revenue from fine wine sales.

This might not seem like an important question to prepare for, but it is. One thing I was wondering was whether employees have the opportunity to pursue professional development opportunities, like attending conferences or taking online class to develop their skill sets. Beef up on interview questions about your past work experience, your former job duties, and your career expectations.

Take the right steps to prepare for the interview questions that demand you solve a problem or react to a possible future situation. Sharpen your knowledge of the interview questions that require you to assert an opinion, establish your beliefs, or show off your personality. Skip to primary navigation Skip to content Skip to primary sidebar. Interview Questions.

Table of Contents. Tips: Limit your responses to your professional life. Start from the beginning of your career, summarizing your experience as you go. If you have limited or no work experience, try to focus on experience — like internships — that relate to the role at hand. Keep your response positive. Never trash talk your past or current employer in any capacity. Tips: Prepare a response that showcases your time management skills, your conflict management skills, or both. If using an example, use one that had a positive outcome and that shows off your problem-solving skills.

Tips: To answer this question, study the job ad and research the company and its achievements. Jot down some interesting points about the company and role to use in your answer. If you have a personal connection to the company, be sure to incorporate it into your response.

Tips: Employers value soft skills like excellent communication skills, customer service skills, and conflict resolution skills. Make sure your answer is specific, personalized, and truly impressive- this article will walk you through doing just that. Got it? Possibly one of the silliest questions — but it too requires an artful and diplomatic answer. The money question. Your questions here can either leave a strong, lasting impression on the interviewer, or make you come across as clueless. Before a face-to-face, you typically have a phone screen you need to get through.

Here are some tips for conquering that phone interview and getting through to the next round. Follow these commandments and they may lead you to the promised land — or promised cubicle same thing. Pamela Skillings is co-founder of Big Interview.