Are you ready for the interview?

Job Interview

The phrase “First impression is the last impression” rightly fits when we talk about a job interview. Indeed interviews are nerve racking but creating the right impression and impact on the interviewer is very important and the only way you can ease your nerves is by doing a lot of preparations beforehand. Some of the common interview questions that must be included in your interview question list are,

Tell me something about yourself?

This is the most common and crucial question asked in the interview as it will be your elevator pitch. This question should not take more than two minutes to answer. The motive here is to give them a brief of who you are as a person and show them how expressive you are. Please do not elaborate your personal history. You should only stick to the job positions you have applied by highlighting your educational and personal qualifications that can contribute to the company given your background and experiences.

It’s all about playing your role right – Identify what the company is looking for, if it rewards technical skills, play those up. Showcase the qualities needed for the job you’re interviewing for. Write down list of notable achievements before the interview, and be sure to bring them up.

What are your Strengths and Weaknesses?

When answering this question keep in mind to always back up your points with an example. Highlight strengths that align with the company’s culture and goals. Make sure that when choosing which strengths you must relate to the position your applying to. For example, if you’re applying for a human resources position, talk about your interpersonal skills.

As far as the weakness question is concerned, it is always the hardest to answer. Avoid giving clichéd answer such as you are a hard worker or you’re a perfectionist etc. Stick to the truth and mention steps you take to counter the weakness. Do not put anything on the table that will make you look like an incompetent employee, such as incapability to meet deadlines or getting into conflicts with co-workers Be smart to spin your negatives into positives but make sure it should sound rehearsed. You should look like a problem solver by showcasing your skills to fix a problem.

What are your salary expectations?

Avoid answering this question at the interview and tell the interviewers that you want to hold off on salary talk until something is decided.

Why do you want to work for us?

Study in detail about the company you are applying for such as website, news articles, profiles of employees etc. Understand the company’s culture and its goals. Do your homework well and try to figure out how the company ties into your own career path and future.

Where do you see yourself 5 years down the line?

Plan about how you can move up the ladder and figure out the natural career path. Be honest but make sure you don’t appear to be an unattractive candidate.

Have you given interviews somewhere else as well?

Avoid! Do not spend too much time on this question and answer briefly. Simple say ‘yes’ and mention the fact that you’re open to opportunities will be enough. Remember, honesty is always the best policy, and don’t lie and say you’re interviewing at certain companies when you’re not.

Why should we hire you?

Think about why you would be better for the job than others and how you would prove to be a better employee. Illustrate how your ideas and works benefited your previous companies.

Why did you leave your current job?

In case you are leaving because of some negative situation, make sure you do not badmouth your seniors or the company, as it will reflect badly on you. Focus on the fact that you’re looking for growth and that you feel this company feels like the step in the right direction.

Do you wish to ask something?

Try to ask good questions as it reveal a lot of your personality and this can prove to be the most important part of the interview. Take your time and ask well thought-out questions that require more than a “yes” or “no” answer.

Avoid questions that appear to be too assuming and sounds as if you got the job. Focus more on what you can do for the company and not what the company can do for you.

Have you ever been in conflict in your office and how did you resolve it?

Be very careful while answering this question and make sure that you’re not bitter or negative in your answer. Be positive and calm as it reflects the fact that you handle conflict well. Talk about a problem you faced and not something you created, and the steps you took to resolve the issue.

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