Interview preparation can be enhanced by preparing with general Q & A that an employer might ask. This tool is very helpful for job candidates to use during the interview preparation process. This kind of exercise is also useful for pointing out things a candidate might not wish to say during an interview. An interview sample Q&A can also be used to help job seekers try out different interview techniques to see if one style fits their personality better than another.
Job interviews are always stressful - even for job seekers who have gone on countless interviews. The best way to reduce the stress is to be prepared. Take the time to review the "standard" interview questions you will most likely be asked. Also review sample answers to these typical interview questions.
Then take the time to research the company. That way you'll be ready with knowledgeable answers for the job interview questions that specifically relate to the company you are interviewing with.
In addition to being ready to answer these standard questions, prepare for behavior based interview questions. This is based on the premise that a candidate's past performance is the best predictor of future performance.
Take the time to compile a list of responses to both types of interview questions and to itemize your skills, values, and interests as well as your strengths and weaknesses. Emphasize what you can do to benefit the company rather than just what you are interested in.
Here, we'll look at some common questions and what you should consider when formulating your responses,
QUESTION: What can you do for us that other candidates can't?
Answer: What you have to offer: past experience directly related to the job; specialized knowledge; relevant situational expertise and experience (growth, change, turnaround, startup); skills; commitment and enthusiasm for the business or your profession; future potential.
QUESTION: Where would you like to be in your career five years from now?
Answer: "My goal is to be a corporate VP by the time I am 37." Or to be more subjective answer: "In five years, I want to have gained solid experience in marketing communications and be developing skills in another marketing function."
QUESTION: Tell me about a project you worked on that required heavy analytical thinking.
Answer: "In 2010, I was given project with a 15-day deadline. The goal was clear, but I had to figure out how to get there. So here is what I did (analysis/decisions/actions). The end result was ______."
QUESTION: Why do you want to leave your current position?
Answer: Be careful. You don't want to bad-mouth your current employer or put yourself in a weaker negotiating position. You could say, "Actually, I'm happy doing what I am doing now. But recently I have been keeping my eyes open for other opportunities. I don't need to leave, but for the right opportunity, I would consider it. This opportunity seems to fit the criteria I set out."
QUESTION: Tell me about yourself.
Answer: The stronger the connection you can make between your background, knowledge and interests, the more compelling you will be as a candidate. If there is something notable about your personal life that adds to your candidacy or helps explain your career trajectory, add it. Otherwise, leave personal details out at this stage unless invited to do so.
QUESTION: How would you describe your work style?
Answer: Be specific and backing up your answer with a brief example works best. You could use the past week as an illustrative example.
QUESTION: Why are you interested in this job?
Answer: You want to present your reason as a benefit to the employer. If it is the first interview, you might not have all the answers or will have not made up your mind yet. In this case, use a statement like, "From what I have seen so far...."
QUESTION: How do you deal with conflict?
Answer: Consider offering a specific example to demonstrate how you resolve conflict.
QUESTION: Tell me about a time when you faced a major obstacle at work.
Answer: You could include the analysis your performance and the resulting strategy, the process you took, the key actions performed, your arguments or anything else that clearly demonstrates how you achieved your goal.
QUESTION: Tell me about your proudest achievement.
Answer: Set up the story by providing context. Recount the situation and your role in it. Next, discuss what you did, including any analysis or problem solving, any process you set up and obstacles you had to overcome. Finally, reveal the outcome and what made you proud.
QUESTION: What is your management style?
Answer:You need to speak to leading and developing your team, communication, how you organize and plan, how you execute and how you measure progress. It need not be a long answer, but responding with a well-thought-out approach to your management style will make a better impression than spouting generalities.
QUESTION: Tell me about an assignment that was too difficult for you. How did you resolve the issue?
Answer:Never say that, you have never had an assignment that was too difficult for you. Discuss an example of a time you had to overcome a lack of knowledge, skill or experience, or when you took your game to the next level: "I wouldn't say that it was too difficult for me. However, I was faced with..."
QUESTION: How would your past experience translate into success in this job?
Answer: Start with naming the top few requirements for this job and then describing how you meet or exceed each one. Or you might begin with your background and summarize how it has prepared you for this job. Often, the context of the job is almost as important as the skills required, so don't forget to speak to the specific challenges and objectives you see in the role.
QUESTION: How would you tackle the first 30 days?
Answer: Do not get specific on changes or initiatives you would make. Instead, think of your response as an operating framework that demonstrates you have a solid, realistic understanding of what needs to be done and how.