What Are Some Common Interview Questions?

Competency based interviews are the most common style of interviewing. Competency based interviewing, also known as behavioral interviewing, requires you to draw on past experience and describe specific examples of incidents that demonstrate your competence in a particular area.

Top 10 Job Interview Questions

The following are what I consider the top 10 job interview questions you’re likely to encounter and how you should approach them.

Common Interview Question 1

What are your career aspirations? Take a step back and look at where you are in your career and what level position you are applying for. If this is a forward or lateral move, first explain how your previous experience is applicable to your target position. Make sure to cite specific examples. If your long term career aspirations expand further than your current target role, then explain how you have advanced through your career and how you plan on getting where you want to be.

Common Interview Question 2

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Why do you want to work for our company? Research the company and find specific attributes about it that you truly find desirable. Company attributes that are appropriate to discuss during an interview include company growth, history, mission statement, niche and market share. Check to see if there have been any recent publications that shed your target company in a positive light. Also, if you have experience in the same or similar industry, make sure to reflect on that experience and explain your transferable experience.

Common Interview Question 3

What interests you about our product/service? Draw on previous experiences where you have successfully used or worked with your target company’s service or product. Always tell the truth and discuss what you can sincerely appreciate about what a company has to offer.

Common Interview Question 4

Of your previous jobs, which did you enjoy most and why? Describe enjoyable attributes of your last job that are similar to what your target job will offer. Make sure to cite examples of events that would provide value to your target employer. Customer service, teamwork and ability to multi-task are a few good things to mention.

Common Interview Question 5

How have you managed conflict in the past? Think of a conflict you have resolved successfully that could potentially take place in your target role. This will walk them through your conflict resolution abilities in an applicable sense.

Common Interview Question 6

Describe what you have done in your career that shows your initiative. This question is designed to determine what leadership qualities you may possess. Even if your target role is not a leadership role, it is important to show leadership qualities.

Common Interview Question 7

What are your weaknesses? Your strengths? This is a question that must be handled very delicately! Start with the weaknesses and end with the strengths. It is always wise to end with a positive trait or quality. Weaknesses should be should be downplayed and kept very general. Think of common weaknesses that an individual in your target role would experience. Regarding strengths, elaborate on your qualities that the ideal candidate of your target role will posses.

Common Interview Question 8

What does teamwork mean to you? Regardless of your target position, all jobs require teamwork and collaborative efforts. Every employer wants a candidate who will mesh well in their environment professionally and culturally. Cite specific examples of when you have allied your talents with others and achieved success.

Common Interview Question 9

What style of management gets the best results from you? Evaluate your current and previous managers and their management styles. Some are micro managers, non-micro managers or somewhere in between. Despite how you have been previously managed, almost all interviewers want a candidate to be independent. The applicant who can be granted complete autonomy of their role and be managed the least is typically the most favorable candidate.

Common Interview Question 10

What have been your major achievements to date? When discussing your major achievements to date, make sure they are applicable to the role you are applying for. Think of the best way to distinguish yourself amongst the competition. Degrees, certifications and company awards would be good topics to discuss. Especially in the current economic state, any achievement that involves saving money is a huge differentiation point.

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