Keys to Success for an Interview
When it comes to interviewing, a lot of career seekers ask how do I prepare for the interview? What questions will they ask? One of the best ways to get ready for a job interview is to practice your responses to any and all interview questions – even writing down your answers can help you prepare. No matter what questions are asked. The key to success in an interview is to be honest, authentic, personable and knowledgeable. Research the company and the people who are interviewing you. Your goal is to build rapport and set yourself apart as the leader of the pack. Most companies have already screened your skills based on the resume.
The companies purpose of the interview is to confirm that you have the industry expertise presented in your resume and that your expertise matches the job description you’re interviewing for. The rest of the interview is all about personality fit within their culture and environment. I recommend that you ask questions and make sure the environment matches you and your goals. An interview should be a conversation not question and answer session. However, if you are new to this or haven’t interviewed in many years, here are some common interview questions to review and contemplate. So, if you have a job interview lined up, practice in front of a mirror or ask a friend or family member to listen to your answers to the following questions so you’ll be ready to put your best foot forward.
Most Common Interview Questions
- What are your strengths?
- What are your weaknesses?
- Why are you interested in working for [insert company name here]?
- Where do you see yourself in five years? Ten years?
- Why do you want to leave your current company?
- Why was there a gap in your employment between [insert date] and [insert date]?
- What can you offer us that someone else can not?
- What are three things your former manager would like you to improve on?
- Are you willing to relocate?
- Are you willing to travel?
- Tell me about an accomplishment you are most proud of.
- Tell me about a time you made a mistake.
- What is your dream job?
- How did you hear about this position?
- What would you look to accomplish in the first 30 days/60 days/90 days on the job?
- Discuss your resume.
- Discuss your educational background.
- Describe yourself.
- Tell me how you handled a difficult situation.
- Why should we hire you?
- Why are you looking for a new job?
- Would you work holidays/weekends?
- How would you deal with an angry or irate customer?
- What are your salary requirements? (Hint: if you’re not sure what’s a fair salary range and compensation package, research the job title and/or company on Glassdoor.)
- Give a time when you went above and beyond the requirements for a project.
- Who are our competitors?
- What was your biggest failure?
- What motivates you?
- What’s your availability?
- Who’s your mentor?
- Tell me about a time when you disagreed with your boss.
- How do you handle pressure?
- What is the name of our CEO?
- What are your career goals?
- What gets you up in the morning?
- What would your direct reports say about you?
- What were your bosses’ strengths/weaknesses?
- If I called your boss right now and asked him what is an area that you could improve on, what would he say?
- Are you a leader or a follower?
- What was the last book you’ve read for fun?
- What are your co-worker pet peeves?
- What are your hobbies?
- What is your favorite website?
- What makes you uncomfortable?
- What are some of your leadership experiences?
- How would you fire someone?
- What do you like the most and least about working in this industry?
- Would you work 40+ hours a week?
- What questions haven’t I asked you?
- What questions do you have for me?
In addition to questions commonly asked during a job interview, many unexpected and downright bizarre questions may also be asked. Check out some of the strangest ones to show up on Glassdoor: Top Oddball Interview Questions.
What are other common questions you have been asked during an interview? What questions have you prepared to ask your future employer?