Jobs interview questions and Answers
Interviewers seem to have favorite questions that they always ask every job candidate. The best way to impress interviewers is to have thought about the question and prepared to answer it in advance.
Some of these questions will also be asked while networking or just talking with family and friends. Get comfortable answering them.
Smart job seekers prepare in advance for those questions so they can answer them effectively, impressing the listener and moving closer to a job offer. Some people find it helpful to write out their answers. Others just make notes. Which ever method you choose, take the time to prepare.
If you can, have a friend or family member ask you the questions, and then answer them without looking at your notes. Or, practice in front of a mirror. Whatever works best for you.
Why Employers Ask These Questions
The questions asked in a job interview may seem random and weird to you as a candidate. Often the interviewers are not trained or experienced in job interviews, so, for some employers, a job interview can be very weird.
Usually, solid reasons exist for asking each question. Hiring the wrong person can be a very costly mistake, so interviewers are highly motivated avoid being responsible for making a hiring mistake.
Basically, employers have 3 main reasons for asking every job interview questions:
- To decide if you are qualified for the job - can you actually do the job?
- To determine if you are a "good fit" for the organization - will you be a good subordinate, co-worker, or boss?
- To learn how interested you really are in the organization and the job - are you applying for every job you see or are you sincerely interested in this job?
Stay focused on the job, the job requirements, the employers, and your fit for the job when you answer these questions. Resist the urge to "spill your guts" and NEVER bad-mouth a current or former employer. You are just moving on in your career.Advertisement
The Job Interview Questions Asked Most Often
These are the most common questions asked and how to handle them.
- Often the opening question, it is not an invitation to ramble on about your life history, your favorite baseball team (unless you are interviewing for a job on the team), your car (unless you are interviewing for a car-related job), your school, your family, etc. In fact, keep those thoughts to yourself because they could disqualify for for a job, depending on the preferences of the person/people interviewing you.
As with most other job interview questions, your answer should focus on why you are a good fit for this job. This question is often one of the first ones asked because the interviewer is looking for an overview of your qualifications for their job and also why you are interested.
- Yes, this question is asked often, in spite of how silly it sounds, and yes, you do have a weakness. Be prepared to share it.
This question has 3 different possible types of answers (for different kinds of weaknesses, including irrelevant ones) described in the article. Again, the best answers have two parts.
Take care to choose the "right" weakness for each job, and be prepared in case the follow up questions asks you for another weakness. See several examples of weaknesses to help you develop the answer most appropriate for you. Read What Is Your Greatest Weakness? for details on how to give your best answer to this question.
- Choose the strength most appropriate for the job you are seeking. Being "able to leap tall buildings in a single bound" didn't get Clark Kent his job as a reporter - his writing skills did.
In your answer to this question, fit your strength to the job and the employer. As above, the best answers have 2 parts. Prepare by developing a list of your strengths based on what you, and others, think you do best. Look at your performance reports and awards you have achieved for ideas.
Once you have your list of strengths, choose the ones most appropriate to the the requirements of the job you want. In the interview, share examples of your accomplishments to demonstrate your strengths. For more details, read What Is Your Greatest Strength?
- This question is easy to fumble. "Your job" or "CEO" are not good answers! Yes, they want to know if you are planning to stay, and what you think your future holds. They are also trying to discover if you are a good fit.
This is also a very good question for you to consider, for more than interview preparation. Looking into the future with an idea of where you want to be is the essence of career planning, even when not done in great detail. Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
For each job interview, focus your answer on the job and that employer. Can you see a clear career path in the job titles in their job postings? How big is the organization? Mention a couple of those details in your answer. For more, read Where Do You See Yourself in 5 Years?.