Frequently Asked Interview Questions – 10 Interview Question and Answers to Help You Land a Job
If you've landed on this page chances are you are looking for some frequently asked interview questions and answers for them. You are off to a good start and ahead of a large percentage of interviewees out there because you are trying to prepare for your interview. Preparation for a job interview is key to being successful and confidently responding to the interview questions you will get. I have worked in management for multiple companies and have done hundreds of interviews, so I believe I can pass along some things to help you and give you an interview question and answers for it. I hope to be able to help you prepare for your interview with these frequently asked interview questions. If you do succeed in landing that new job do me a favor, and come back here to let me know. Deal? Great!
An interview is a conversation, but the person giving the job interview is trying to learn something. Many of the commonly asked questions during an interview are designed to dig out facts or personality traits to help determine the right person for the job. Just remember that while certain questions may seem crafted just to make you squirm, a confident attitude and honest response is always better than a canned response. I want you to use these interview question and answers as a guide to help you practice your own responses, but keep in mind that the answers need to be your own. These are merely examples to help you understand what kinds of answers are good. If you use them to prepare your own answers you will be better prepared to ace your interview and land that new job!
Interview question 1: “Tell me about yourself”
This question is open ended and often used to begin an interview. It is not simply an icebreaker since the interviewer wants to know more about what drives the person. Don't start talking about your sewing hobby or how you have 15 cats. That simply won't help you.
A: “I have an extensive background in _________. My past experiences have been in retail sales and mortgage loan origination (insert your own experience). I am positive that my background and experience have prepared me to work for (the company or job type you are applying for), and I enjoy learning about new aspects of finance. I work well either with a team or independently, and I am a fast learner, especially with new technology or software.”
The key to answering this question is to tell the interviewer how you will help and what you can do or what you bring to the table. Incorporate education, volunteering, or anything else that has given you skills for the job or company you are applying.
Interview question 2: “Why do you want to work for us?”
This question sometimes catches interviewees off guard, and the answer is never a simple, “because your company is awesome and pays good.”
A: “After finding out about how your company is leading in widget production and how you developed new and innovative avenues of distribution I was extremely impressed. I also learned that your company is involved in the community by its sponsorships of _____ and how it has given to _____. I would really like to be able to contribute to the growth and positive influence of your company”
Again, what can you do for us? Not what can we do for you.
Interview question 3: “What influenced your decision to choose this as a career?”
A: “My past experiences have shown me that I like to be challenged and to overcome problems. In fact, when I am given a problem to solve, I become very focused on finding out the best solution, and do not give up until I find it. While obtaining an engineering degree, I acquired the tools I needed to effectively solve the problems I was given and became very good at it. Since my solutions can help others, I decided that was the best way to make a difference using my talents.”
The question is designed to determine your decision making skills. As long as there is a clear reason you ended up where you are and have a logical path that you can tell the interviewer, you will have given a good answer.
Interview question 4: “Give me an example of....”
You need to be prepared with some specific stories that show your experience in different situations related to the job you are interviewing for. There are hundreds of variants of this type of question, so it's good to try to come up with some stories that could apply to different situations. These questions can hurt you if you have no experience in the field you are interviewing for. For instance, if you are interviewing for a job waiting tables in a fine dining restaurant the question may end with “...how you deal with an unhappy customer who sends their food back.”
A: “Once during a busy Sunday brunch service there was a family who had all ordered frittatas, and half of the table received omelets when the food was brought to the table. One of the ladies at the table was extremely upset and demanded to speak to the management. I let her know that we would get the error corrected immediately, and right away went to tell the kitchen what was needed on the fly. I asked the manager to speak with them, and then went right back out to the table with some fruit cups I made up quickly. I saw the manager was on his way over, so I went to the kitchen and found the remaining fritatas coming up. I got another server to help, and we ran the food out to them. After getting them settled and they were done, the lady was very nice and thanked me for taking care of things so fast. I told her I hoped they would be back soon, and she said that they would.”
Often these types of questions may result in a follow-up question, so it is important not to make anything up here. Do not worry if there is 20 seconds of silence while you find the perfect story as long as it is relevant and answers the specifics the interviewer asked for.
Continue reading in Part II of Interview Question and Answers where we answer questions like:
“Where do you see yourself in five years?”
“What have you learned from your mistakes on the job?”
And, perhaps the most dreaded interview question of them all:
“Tell me what are your greatest weaknesses.”