Wouldn’t it be great if a job interview included questions about your favorite foods, movies or other easy to answer issues? Sadly, they don’t. However, there are some very common questions that almost every interview includes, and though their importance will vary based on the company and job, it is of the utmost importance that you have ready, clear and well stated answers on hand. Naturally, that means you need to spend time in advance of any interview contemplating those questions and formulating answers. In this article, we will look at a few of those questions and help you determine the best ways to prepare for them.
Tell Me/Us About Yourself
Vague, tricky, and tough to answer without sounding awkward, hurried or even a bit panicked. The good news is that this question has an answer that you can prepare and memorize very easily. It is called the “elevator pitch” and is something used in marketing to allow you to explain a product or service in less than three minutes. You need to take that same model and build your answer to that question. You do that by making a brief list of relevant experiences that work with the job in question, and also a goal statement that explains why you are eager for that particular job.
Why Are You Interested in This Company/Job?
The elevator pitch is not very specific, and is a summary answer. This question demands those specifics. Why would you be good at the job or company? Take the time to research them and find out just how you might fit in or offer your skills as a means of helping them reach a goal? Do you have some ideas about yourself in that role/job? By all means, work them into the answer. It shows you are thinking ahead and focusing on the work, not the salary, perks or options for advancement.
What Are Your Greatest Strengths and Weaknesses?
These always feel like a bit of a trap. List your strengths and you risk sounding over confident or like a braggart. List too many weaknesses and you might make the interviewer doubt your abilities. The best way to prepare for this is to use the research you did for the question above to find two to three points to emphasize in regards to your skills. Where weaknesses are concerned, stick to just one. Make it an issue you are already “working on”, such as a technical skill, and explain how you have been improving through study or work.
Avoid moments of fluster by using our preparedness tips!
By Sangeeta Parmer