You start your job hunt and score yourself an interview. What next?
Next, you prepare yourself for the interview. Once you are selected for your interview, start practicing your answers. While different companies have different sets of questions for different roles there are few which are asked in almost every interview. If you can ace the interview with good answers chances are you will be one of the final candidates for the job. We know interviews can be daunting. Especially if you have a fear of speaking in front of new people. In these cases, the only thing you can do is practice. Unlike the saying, the practice may not make you perfect, but it will boost your confidence.
So, to help you, we have compiled a list of the 11 most asked interview questions and how you can answer them.
- Tell us about yourself
This is possibly the most important question that you will be asked in the interview. The answer you give to this question will set the tone for the rest of your interview. So, it is important to know how to give the best answer possible to this question. Make sure you are clear about how you are going to present yourself. Talk about your experience, background, and qualifications that will present you as the best candidate for the position. Using a storytelling technique to introduce yourself would be the best way to keep your interviewer engaged.
- Why should we hire you?
The interviewer will either surely ask you this question or something similar along the lines of why are you the best candidate for this position. To answer this question in the best way possible you will have to understand the job description well. Be ready to pitch yourself and your skill set. While answering, mention your achievements from your previous workplace, the skills that you have gathered from your work experiences, and the strengths that make you a perfect match for the position.
- What is your salary expectation?
Before you even begin applying make sure you research the salary range for the position you are applying for. The only way you can give a perfect answer to this question is by proper research about the market rate. Once you know how much the range is for the position you are applying for, let them know that based on your skills and experience you’ll be expecting the same. Make sure you give them a range and not a fixed amount as chances are with a fixed amount you can end up lowballing yourself.
- Why are you leaving your previous job?
This is another question that recruiters commonly ask in interviews. No matter how much you dislike your previous job, don’t bad mouth the company in an interview. Let them know that you are looking for growth in your career and that you believe the company you’re interviewing at can give you that. Make sure your answer shows that you left the company on a positive note. If you talk badly about your previous employers you might be a red flag to them.
- How did you hear about this position?
Although this question seems like a normal every-interview question, being able to answer it can put you a step ahead of everyone else. Interviewers ask this question to you to figure out if you are actively looking for opportunities or if you were recommended by anyone. If you have anyone that can refer from inside the company don’t hesitate to take their name. It will be easier to trust you with good references. Similarly, if you found out about it in any event or job portal let them know what it was about the company that made you apply. Answering these will put you up in their good books for sure.
- What are your strengths?
This possibly is the easiest as well as one of the most important questions that you’ll be asked in an interview. While answering let them know about four to five of your best attributes and how those skills will help you be good at what you do. You can also let them know about your previous work and academic experiences that prepared you for the position you are applying for. Be sure to mention skills that are relevant to the position but also make sure that you don’t come off as cocky.
- What are your weaknesses?
This one question is tricky. The recruiter when asking this question wants to know how honest and self-aware you are. Don’t go saying ‘I am perfect!’ as it will leave a more negative impact than a positive one. Mention your actual weakness which will not hamper your work and mention what you are doing to be better at it. Focus on your strength and minimize your weakness.
- Where do you see yourself in the next five years?
With this question, the recruiter wants to know how motivated and goal-oriented you are. Along with that, they are also looking forward to seeing if the plan you have for yourself aligns with their course of work. Don’t be scared and let them know about what you’ve planned for yourself. This could also be an opportunity to show your expertise in industry trends. At the same time make sure your goals are realistic as having unrealistic goals can put the recruiters off.
- How did you handle a stressful situation at work?
The goal of the recruiter when asking this question is to figure out whether you can handle pressure or not. Here the best way to answer would be to tell the recruiter about any situation you had at your previous job and how you handled it. The best way to prove that you handled it well is by including the results your action brought. So mention what you changed or did that made the stressful situation easy to handle.
- What do you know about this organization?
Before your interview, take some time to research the organization. Visit their website, read about their history, check their social media accounts, and look for any recent news or updates.
Pay attention to the company’s mission statement and core values. These will give you an idea of what the company is all about and what they prioritize. During the interview, highlight how your skills and experiences align with the company’s values and mission. This will demonstrate that you’re genuinely interested in the organization and that you’re a good fit for its culture.
- Do you have any questions for us?
Before you go for an interview research the company, position, and your role so that you have questions ready. Having questions to ask at the interview shows that you are eager about the opportunity. Some questions might be already answered, thus, make sure you don’t ask the same questions twice. Feel free to ask them about what a day at their company looks like, or what could be possible projects you will be handling.
Once you are prepared with answers to these questions you will be ready for your interview. Practice will surely help, so make sure you practice your answers. Wishing you all the best in your interviews!