As you prepare for your job interview, it does not hurt to have some answers ready to frequent questions. Be prepared to answer inquiries about your employment history, your capability to work on a team, motivation levels, leadership abilities, as well as other questions about your overall work experience and skills.
Another thing that many people do not consider about the interview is that you need to target your answers for the specific job you are seeking. The goal is to show the employer that you are the most qualified candidate. If they do not feel that you are a good fit for the company, then they will overlook you and move on to someone else. Here are the different types of questions you should brush up on:
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1. Your Abilities
You want to showcase your abilities without bragging. Having an answer that is factual and helpful to your potential employer can move to the front of the line. If you type 100 words per minute, then you want to highlight that accomplishment. Never forget to mention computer skills or things that are beneficial to the line of work.
2. Previous Employment
During an interview, the reason you left previous jobs will most certainly come up. Were you fired? What have you been doing since you have been unemployed? If you are currently employed, be ready to answer why you are leaving. Never air rifts between you and others. Always find positive aspects to talk about. Be honest but never offer too much information during a job interview.
One of the more trickier questions can be those related to salaries. You must be honest as your answer can be verified, but you do not want to price yourself out of the market. They may ask you what you are looking for as far as pay. You can always answer that you are negotiable on compensation. You may get more, or you may get less than you previously made. Be willing to negotiate.
4. Strengths and Weaknesses
While it may be easy to point out your strong points, many people have a difficult time pointing out their weaknesses. Make sure you tailor your responses for the job at hand. Never say things like “I am often late,” or “I have a challenging time working with others.” Even though this is meant to be a negative question, you can turn it into a positive one. Say things like “I find that I often work too hard,” or “I find that I care too much about my work and am a perfectionist.”
5. Personal Life
Personal questions are used to determine if you are a good fit. They help to judge your personality too. Be prepared to have your goals on the tip of your tongue. Do you want a company where you can advance or are you happy just working the 9 am to 5 pm shift? The interviewer wants to make sure you and the position are a good match, so they do not have to go through this process again.
6. Behavioral Skills
The worst part about most interviews is when you are asked to demonstrate how you would react in a specific situation. They will use things like “you know a coworker stole $20 from her cash register, what do you do?” Although the example is generic, they will use in-depth questioning to understand your behavior and personality.
7. Interpersonal Skills
Though all the questions are important, finding out about your interpersonal skills is superior. Do you have a challenging time getting along with coworkers and managers? Be careful how you answer questions about interpersonal skills, they may include a few tricky ones to understand you better.
8. Job Specifics
When you are interviewing for a specific job, like an IT operator, you need to know explicit things. Ask yourself what is pivotal to your job and be able to list these things without thought. An employer will want to know about your schooling, skills, certifications, dialects spoken, and tools you use.
9. Leadership Capabilities
Will you have an active role in leadership? You must showcase your leadership skills to be considered for such a position. They may ask how you handle your team and what accomplishments you have made. What about scheduling and building morale? Do you have experience with hiring and firing associates? What can you offer to the company that someone else cannot?
10. Motivational Aspects
One thing employers hate is having employees that they cannot motivate. There will, no doubt, be a serious of questions to test your motivational level. For instance, if a project did not get completed and the deadline is looming, can you stay over and help the team get it done? Are you going to be the first one done with our projects or always the last one to turn in their work?
11. Sales Position Questions
Applying for a sales position requires a whole other set of questions. They want to know about your past experiences. Sure, you put it on your resume, but they want to hear from you. They may even ask you to sell them something. An example question is; “Sell me this pencil”. Be prepared to answer with confidence. Some sales positions are commission only. Can you live on commission alone and does that drive you to do as much as you can? What is your product knowledge about their items?
12. Communications Skills
During a job interview, having effective communication skills is vital. Can you communicate with others successfully or do you internalize things? Being a part of a team requires you to have conversations and to be accountable one to another. Your communication skills will be tested with many questions. Be sure you can communicate back efficiently.
13. Company Culture
Each place of employment has their own method of success. For instance, one company may only allow jeans on a certain day, while other businesses wear jeans every day. The culture of the corporation plays a big part of the job, and they want to make sure that you do not have culture shock. If you come from a place that required business professional attire, then you may have a challenging time fitting in with a relaxed atmosphere. Questions in this section are geared at making sure you are a good fit, and not just with office apparel.
14. Competency and Time Management
You can write anything you want down on a resume, but that does not mean that you are competent for the job. You may be all book smarts, but when it comes to putting those smarts to good use, you may fail miserably. Checking your competency is important. You will be asked precise questions regarding the field you are applying too. For instance, an accountant might be asked detailed questions about QuickBooks or other software programs. Time management is another key issue. Can you effectively manage your time? You may be given both questions and quizzes on both these matters.
15. Questions You Should Ask the Interviewer
Finally, in most interviews, you will be asked if you have any questions. The best questions should be all about the company. You should ask questions that show your knowledge about their company. If the interview is going well and they start to take about next step you may want to talk about schedule, vacation packages, sick time, salary, and anything else that you can think of. Write down your questions so that you do not forget later. You do not want to bombard them with questions but asking a couple will not hurt anything.