The Interview Shortlist

With over a decade of interviews under our belt, we came up with a short list of interview questions. When asked a question, please offer up an honest, thoughtful answer. If stumped on a tricky question, ask to hear it again so as to give yourself more time to come up with a genuine response. Most importantly, always do your homework before heading into an interview.

Here are a few of our favorite questions you can expect to be asked at your next interview:

1. Tell me about yourself? Keep your responses relevant to the position you are applying for. Your applicable skills may be forgotten and lost in unrelated job histories.

2. What do you know about our (client’s) company? If you did your homework, you will point out a few achievements the prospective employer has accomplished. Hiring Managers like team players with goals.

3. How did you hear about the position? An opportunity to tell your job search story, who or what got you excited to apply.

4. Why did you leave your last job? Absolutely, do not bash your previous employer. A short thoughtful response, as in, “I needed something more challenging.” Stay positive!

5. How do you handle stress? A personality question… only respond with a stressful situation which had a positive outcome. You do not want to share the time you jumped off the deep end and nearly melted down.

6. What is your greatest weakness? Another personality question… do not go down the rabbit hole with a deep dark secret. Again, stay positive, truthful and offer up a weakness, of which, you need to work on.

7. Why should we hire you? Have a sincere answer readily available because this question is coming. Ideas to respond, give an example of being a team player, a results driven worker, your competitiveness, or having a solid on-the-job work history.

8. Where do you see yourself in 5 years? A hiring manager wants to know if you have ambition and realistic goals. Adding to your skill set to improve job security in the future is a great answer.

9. Why is there a gap in your employment? Be direct with your answer and fill in the gaps with volunteerism, classes, family, etc. Try and move the conversation on to what you can contribute now and your willingness to begin. Do not linger in no-man’s land.

10. What do you like to do outside of work? Another personal question to size you up to see whether you will be a good cultural fit for the company. Be honest but semi-professional. Open up to an inside look at a week in the life of John Smith.

Do Your Homework!