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If you’re interviewing for a job, you know there are certain questions that may come up over and over again. In this post, we’ll go through the most common interview questions and give you tips on how to answer them in your favor.
Tell me about yourself.
The first question in any job interview is “Tell me about yourself.” This may seem like an easy question, but it can be difficult to answer if you don’t know what the interviewer is looking for.
The key to answering this question effectively is knowing how much detail to provide and how much time you should take when doing so. In general, try to keep your response under two minutes (the average length of most answers). You want to provide enough information so that the interviewer has a good sense of who you are professionally but not so much that they feel overwhelmed by all the details or bored with hearing about them. Your answer should include:
Why do you want this job?
The first thing to do is to be prepared for this question. Think about why you want the job, and what you can bring to the company. It’s not enough to just say “I want a job,” or even “I need money.” You need to be specific about what exactly you want from this position and how it will help your career path forward.
If possible, find out as much as possible about the company before going into an interview so that when asked why they should hire you over other candidates, there are real reasons behind your answer besides just saying “because I’m great!” Be honest and genuine in answering this question so that they know exactly where they stand with regards to their hiring decision; after all, if all else fails then honesty goes a long way!
What are your strengths?
What are your weaknesses?
There are two common mistakes people make when answering this question. The first is to completely avoid the question, which may come across as dishonest or unprepared. The second mistake is to say something like “I’m a perfectionist” or “I work too hard.” These are not weaknesses–they’re just traits that are common among successful people!
Instead of falling into either of these traps, prepare for this question by thinking about it in advance and coming up with an actual weakness that isn’t deal-breaking for a job you want (e.g., being late occasionally). Then come up with an explanation for why the trait is still useful despite its downside (e.g., being late occasionally allows me time at home before work starts).
What have you done to improve yourself professionally over the last year?
How do you handle pressure or stressful situations?
The question is: How do you handle pressure or stressful situations?
This is a great opportunity to showcase your strengths, so be sure to discuss how you use them in times of need. One way that many people approach this question is by referring back to their resume and highlighting specific experiences where they had to overcome adversity. For example, if one of your top strengths is “resilience,” talk about how you overcame an obstacle at work or school (or even at home). If another strength on your list is “empathy,” explain how being able to put yourself in someone else’s shoes helps when working under pressure.
Do you consider yourself successful? If so, what makes you successful?
You’ll often hear people talk about success. But what does it mean to be successful?
It’s important to define your own terms before you answer this question. Are you happy with where you are in life? How do you measure success? Do the things that make one person successful not apply to another person at all, or are there some common themes we can all agree on when we think about what makes us feel like we’ve achieved something meaningful in our lives.
A good way to start thinking about this is by identifying your goals–what do they look like, how much time do they take up in your day-to-day life and work schedule, etc. For example: “I want to own my own business by the time I’m 30 years old.” Or perhaps: “I want my kids (or grandkids!) never having known any other way than being able to go wherever they want without having any money worries.”
What motivates you when things get tough at work?
This question is a way for employers to assess your motivation and drive. They’re looking for someone who will stay committed even when things get tough, so it’s important that you have a good answer ready.
Where do you see yourself in five years if we hire you today?
This question is designed to assess your goals and ambitions. It’s also a chance for you to show the interviewer that you have some idea of what the future might hold for you professionally, and that you’re not just looking for any old job.
If you are asked this question during an interview, be sure to answer thoughtfully and honestly: don’t say something like “I don’t know” or “I’ll be happy wherever I am.” Instead, give an answer that conveys ambition without making promises about future plans (which may or may not come true). For example: “In five years’ time I’d like my career path here at X Company to include some level of responsibility over others; ideally I could see myself managing teams within three years from now.”
How did you reach the decisions that led to these accomplishments?
This question can be tricky to answer, especially if you’re not prepared for it. Your interviewer wants to know how you make decisions and whether or not those decisions were correct. Here are some tips:
Be prepared for these common questions, and practice answering them ahead of time.
The key to answering these questions is preparation. Take time to think about how you want to present yourself and what makes you unique as an employee. Remember that it’s not just about what you say, but also how you say it!