1、What can you tell me about XYZ Company?
If you need to, start by saying “Is it ok if I refer to my notes?”. When you get the nod, off you go.
A good interview answer should include short factual statements covering such things as the Company’s history, its products, staff numbers, turnover and future business objectives. Something like this is fine:
“I believe the Company began in 1967, with just one outlet, but now has 25. From what I’ve read, you sell A, B and C products across Europe and the States and have a turnover in excess of $5 million. You employ 125 staff. I beleive you hope to enter the Asian market by 2010″. “I’ve done some research and can tell you more if you like”.
You will likely hear “No, that’s fine. Thank you.”
Your interviewers will be impressed that you prepared and made notes and you’re off to a good start.
2、What do you think XYZ Company can offer you?
There are two bits to this interview question, the role and the Company. Mention both. You might say:
“I’m told the Company has a firm commitment to individual training and development. This is great news for me because I’m keen to learn and advance in the Company. The role itself appears challenging and rewarding which I’ll find very motivating”.
3、If you’re successful, what do you think you’ll be doing day-to-day?
You might start by saying “I understand that I’ll be…”. Then you could talk about the main role, any other activities and any targets you expect to be given.
1、What are your strengths/weaknesses?
IMPORTANT — this common job interview question can be asked in many different ways, such as “What qualities do you admire in others that you would like to develop in yourself?”
Strengths should be easy enough to think about (keep the position in mind).
Talking about weaknesses can be harder but good interview answers are still possible. Many people choose to mention something which they’ve recognized as being a weakness but have overcome.
“I’d like to be more organized, like one of my colleagues. She doesn’t have to try. But because I don’t find it as easy as her, I use to-do lists and a diary to help me successfully manage my work”.
On a final note, it’s much safer to highlight your lack of experience or knowledge as a weakness than a fault in your personality. Employers can always give you experience but few want to help you overcome shortcomings in your personality! So avoid telling interviewers that you “get bored” or “too involved” or “frustrated”!
2、Why did you think you are suited to this job?
What they are really asking is “You know what we are looking for so can you tell us what you have done or what you have, that is relevant.”
3、Why should we give the job to you above other applicants?
This is often our closing question. We want to know, in a nutshell, why you are the best candidate for the job. This is a chance to list your best attributes as they relate to the vacancy. Don’t be cocky, but don’t be shy.
4、How well do you work under pressure?
“I know that all jobs involve some sort of pressure at some time. I can work as well under pressure as I do at any other time but when I am busy, I prioritize activities so that my workload is manageable.”
If the interviewers focus on other pressure, such as pressure to meet targets, dealing with difficult customers etc, give an appropriate reply, mentioning past situations where you have coped under such pressure.
5、What sort of people do you find it difficult to work with?
“I am an easy going person who seems to get on with everyone. If I have to pick a type of person that bothers me, it’s the one who doesn’t pull their weight or isn’t worried about the standard of their work because it reflects badly on the rest of the team.”
6、Sell me this pen!
In interviews for sales job, you may hear this, believe us! In fact, one of us had a non-sales interview and was asked this, unexpectedly. The object you are asked to sell could in fact be anything. Some interviewers like to see whether you focus on the benefits of the object or its features. The features of the pen might be that it’s blue, with a roller ball and plastic coating. The benefits might be that it’s reliable, easy to hold and leak proof.
1、What key skills do you think you need to be successful in this role?
You got this far because your job application form or resume or CV matched the interviewers’ criteria as specified in the job advert. Just expand on this in your job interview answers. List the skills you think are required, giving a little explanation as to why each is needed.
You might then be asked to give examples where you’ve used one or more of these skills. These are behavioural interview questions.
2、Where do you see yourself in five years time?
This can be a difficult job interview question to answer, especially if you’ve not thought beyond getting this job! When you answer, you want to sound ambitious enough to be motivated to do a good job, but not too ambitious in case your interviewers think you’re only using this job as a stepping stone to something better.
I can be successful in this job and taken on additional responsibilities and be considered suitable for promotion.
3、How does this job fit into your career plans?
This is a similar job interview question to the one above really, except that it looks beyond five years. Be realistic. You might say something like this if you’re going for a middle-management position:
“My ambition is to lead a department and be involved in strategic decision-making at a senior level. I expect the role I’m applying for to give me more experience of leading and some introduction to strategy so that I’m ready for a senior role in a few years time”.
4、Where did you think you’d be at this stage in your life?
Avoid saying further than you are now! It’s better to show you’ve met or exceeded your ambitions than fallen short of them. Tell the interviewers that you are happy with your life and career, but are looking for more challenge as you like to stretch yourself to achieve more.
5、If you could start again, what career decisions would you make differently?
You’re on sticky ground if you start trying to think of hypothetical career changes that might have served you better in the past. Your answers to interview questions will suggest you’re not happy with the way things are and no-one wants to hire an unhappy person.
“I wouldn’t change anything. I am happy with my career as it is now but want fresh challenges.”
“I’m not the kind of person who looks back with regrets. I prefer to invest my energy looking forward”.