Answers to the 10 Most Common Interview Questions
Are you prepared for your upcoming interview? Knowing what questions the interviewer will ask you will help you to answer them confidently and successfully.
Although it’s not necessary to recite your responses from memory, preparing in advance will allow you to get a sense of what to focus on to appear as put-together and competent as possible. Make sure to review these top ten questions so you’re ready for anything the interviewer throws your way.
1. Can you share a little bit about yourself?
This question is most likely going to be asked at the beginning of the interview. Be prepared for your answer to not be too much, or too little, personal information. You can include some of your interests or experiences unrelated to work, such as your education or what you’re passionate about. It’s always a good idea to showcase your personality to make the interview more memorable.
If you’re not sure where to start in terms of what information to include, there’s a simple formula you can use to create your answer: ‘present-past-future.’ Start with an overview of where you are now (this could include your current position along with a personal hobby), discuss how you got to that point (this could include your education or any relevant experience, such as an internship), and then conclude with one of your goals for the future. To make your answer even more outstanding, establish how the position you’re applying for will help you reach those goals.
Whichever way you decide to form your response, make sure to write it out beforehand and read it aloud so you can guarantee that it sounds natural. If you can, make your answer as brief as possible.
2. Why do you think we should hire you?
Are you the best applicant? When answering this question, it is the perfect time for you not to be modest or too proud. The best answer is to make sure that your response is confident, concise, and focused on what skills sets you can offer to the employer. This is a great time to review what requirements are needed for this position and how you can craft an answer that best fits the job.
3. What do you consider your strongest skill?
This is one of the most asked questions in interviews. When asked about your strengths, it’s important that you mention the skills that best qualify you for this job versus other candidates. Before your interview make sure that you take time to review the qualifications for the position and that you have examples best fit those qualifications.
It is helpful that you remember to show your strengths and not just tell your strengths. For example, rather than saying you’re a team player talk about a time you were on a team and how contributed to the success of that team.
4. Can you tell me about your weaknesses?
As expected the question asked after what is your strongest skill is what is your shortcomings. The best way to answer this question is to first be honest with what your struggles and in turn mention what steps you take to overcome your weakness.
This is more powerful than saying your weakness is perfectionism (which every other candidate is going to say). For example, if you struggle with time management talk about how you create a calendar and a to-do list with all of the tasks need to complete the project with hard deadlines. This shows how in tune you are with yourself which is more impressive than a generic answer.
5. What motivated you to leave your current or most recent job?
When asked about your desire to transition into a new role it is important that you stick with the facts and how this role plays in the future of your career. Even if you leaving your previous position under unfortunate circumstances your response should be a positive perspective. Your goal with this answer is to show that you are optimistic by the possibilities of new opportunities than leaving a bad job. Avoid trying to bash your current organization, colleagues or supervisor.
An employer is not likely to add someone to their team who talks negatively about a company.
6. What is your salary range?
What are you looking at for compensation? This question may seem very simple to answer, but if answered too high it could hurt your chances in getting the job. If you answer to low, you can get cheated with a lower offer. The best thing to do is to review the salary of the position that you are interviewing for on websites like Glassdoor or Payscale. Be sure to factor in your experience and the skills that you have to justify your answer. It’s important to know your worth.
7. What about this job interests you?
This is a question asked by the interviewer to test your knowledge about the position and the company. So when you are doing your research before the interview, be sure that you know the position, company, culture, and the mission like the back of your hand. Your goal is to show the interviewer that is a role and this company is a perfect fit for you.
8. How do deal with high-stress in the work environment?
No job is perfect, so how you manage stressful and high-pressure situations is important. How do you handle yourself when things don’t go expected? The best response to this question is by giving an example of a stressful situation in your previous position.
If you haven’t experienced any high pressure or stressful situations, you need to formulate your answer that acknowledges workplace stress, when you overcame it, and how it became an advantage in your professional growth.
9. Where do you see yourself in the next 5 years?
What the interviewer is trying to gauge is if they can invest in you or if you are going to leave for a better opportunity. Your answer needs to be focused on the job that you are interviewing for, and it should align with long term goals that deal with that position.
10. Do you have any questions for me?
At the end of the interview, most interviews will ask if you have any questions about the job or the company. Most might say they don’t have any questions, but not having any questions may seem like you uninterested about the opportunity.
So, it always important to have a list of questions about the job like:
- What does every day look like for this?
- What is your timeline for this position?
- Is there anything holding me back to moving on the next round?