Interviewing can feel like an impossible challenge. And it feels more frustrating the more you’ve spent on the hunt, which means that you’ve heard very similar questions from various potential employers. How can you know the best answers and still feel authentically you? Here are some of the most common interview questions and how to answer them.
1. Tell Me About Yourself
This interview prompt can be difficult because it doesn’t give you any parameters. How do you know where to start or how much information to provide? Your interviewer wants to see a handful of things. They want to know more about your specific experience related to their job and how you use your skills to succeed.
2. Why Should We Hire You?
This is a similar question, but they want to see how excited you are about their opportunity. Many people want any job, but the employer wants someone eager to work for them and has done their homework about the job. Tell them something specific about why you’re interested.
3. What’s Your Greatest Strength?
Many people are worried that answering this question will sound like bragging. But that’s not the purpose of it. They want to know what you genuinely think your workplace superpower is. For example, if safety has always been of crucial importance, make sure you focus on your adherence to safety protocol.
4. What’s Your Biggest Weakness?
On the other hand, people often stumble with this question too. Some bad advice has been to turn a strength into a weakness. For example, “I’m willing to work long hours because I’m so dedicated to my job.” That’s not what employers want to know. They want a genuine answer followed by how you work to improve that aspect of your experience.
5. Why Did You Leave Your Last Job?
The key here is to make sure that you maintain a positive attitude. Don’t tell a potential employer that you left because you disliked your boss or didn’t get along with coworkers. They will immediately think that the same thing will happen if you work for them. It’s better to reframe the reason positively.
6. Tell Me About a Time When
This one is tricky because it can be followed by nearly any example. Your interviewer wants to know how you handle yourself on the job and how you think on your feet. With this kind of behavioral question, you can tell a story.
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