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Interview Questions About You

Interviewers will ask questions about you to gain insight into your personality, and to determine whether you're
a fit for both the job and the company.

Tell me about yourself.

How to Answer the Tell Me About Yourself Interview Question

Although it might be tempting to share a list of your most compelling qualifications for the job at hand, a more
low-key approach will probably help you to develop a personal rapport with your interviewer.Try starting out by
sharing some personal interests which don't relate directly to your work. Examples might include a hobby which
you are passionate about like quilting, astronomy, chess, choral singing, golf, skiing, tennis, or
antiquing.Interests like long distance running or yoga which help to represent your healthy, energetic side are
worth mentioning. Pursuits like being an avid reader or solving crossword puzzles or brain teasers will help to
showcase your intellectual leaning. Interests like golf, tennis, and gourmet food might have some value if you
would be entertaining clients in your new job.Volunteer work will demonstrate the seriousness of your character
and commitment to the welfare of your community.Interactive roles like PTA volunteer, museum tour guide,
fundraiser, or chair of a social club will help show your comfort with engaging others.
Transition to Professional from Personal
After sharing a few interesting personal aspects of your background, you can transition to sharing some key
professional skills that would help you to add value if you were hired for your target job.Consider using phrases
like "In addition to those interests and passions, my professional life is a huge part of who I am, so I'd like to
talk a bit about some of thestrengths which I would bring to this job."
Share Your Expertise
Be ready to share three or four of the personal qualities, skills and/or areas of expertise which would help you to
excel in the job for which you are interviewing. Ultimately, you will want to share several other strengths before
the interview is over.Make a list of your strengths before you go into the interview, so you know what you will
share. Look at the job description and match it with your skills. Then share the top few skills which make you
an ideal candidate for the job.However, be careful not to overwhelm the interviewer with too much information.
After mentioning three or four strengths, you might mention that you have several other assets which you would
like to discuss as the interview unfolds.At first, you should only mention the asset and allude only briefly to
some proof of how you have tapped it to your advantage.For example, you might say that you love to give
presentations and that has helped you to generate lots of leads at sales dinners for prospective clients.Later in
the interview, you will want to be more specific and detailed in discussing situations, interventions and results
flowing from your strengths.

What is your greatest strength?

What is your greatest weakness?

-Being organized wasn't my strongest point, but I implemented a time management system that really
helped my organization skills.
-I like to make sure that my work is perfect, so I tend to perhaps spend a little too much time checking it.
However, I've come to a good balance by setting up a system to ensure everything is done correctly the
first time.
-I used to wait until the last minute to set appointments for the coming week, but I realized that
scheduling in advance makes much more sense.

Tell me about something that's not on your resume.

Share Something Personal

Finally, you can take this opportunity to share a hobby or interest that might positively reflect upon your
character or make you a memorable candidate. This approach will make the most sense if you have already
been able to convey your job-specific assets and motivations sufficiently. For example, if you are applying for a
job that requires a great deal of intellectual firepower, then you might share your passion for chess, or if
physical risk taking is required, you might mention your interest in rock climbing.

How will your greatest strength help you perform?

My greatest strength is my listening ability. I pay careful attention to what Im being told about
everything, from specific information relating to current projects, to future projects, even to what my
colleagues did over the weekend. By being a good listener, I am more effective at completing projects
efficiently. My listening skills also help me effectively motivate others, which would be a large part of
my job as head of the department.

How do you handle failure?

How to Respond to Interview Questions About Failure

The best approach to this kind of question is to identify some scenarios when you came up short on the job in
advance of your interview. Choose situations where you took responsibility for your failure, learned from it and
took steps to avoid recurrences of similar failures. Typically it is safer to cite failures that were not very recent.
Be ready to describe your strategy for self-improvement in detail and to reference subsequent successes you
achieved after taking those steps.
Examples of the Best Answers
Your response to this question can begin with a general summary of your approach. For example, you might
lead with a statement like: "I have always lived by the maxim that nobody is perfect, so I am relatively
comfortable taking responsibility for my shortcomings. My approach is to figure out what I could change to
avoid similar circumstances in the future. I look to my professional colleagues in similar jobs and co-workers at
my organization for suggestions on how to improve. I am aggressive about taking workshops, training seminars
and online tutorials to upgrade my skills."

Share an Example
Employers will likely follow up with a request for you to provide an example of a failure that you addressed, so
be ready to furnish something like this:"When I was managing the Park Side Restaurant in 2010, I experienced
a year without revenue growth after several years of substantial increases. As I analyzed the situation, I realized
that some of my competitors were grabbing a segment of my customers by using online advertising/promotions
and implementing a social media strategy. I recognized the need to move aggressively into the future, and
mastered some digital marketing skills. I attended several workshops at the annual conference, took a class in
digital marketing and hired a tech savvy intern to help introduce a new marketing strategy.We restructured our
website, instituted a loyalty program, partnered with Groupon and initiated a Facebook campaign. After
implementing these changes, our revenues increased by 15% in the next quarter.

How do you handle success?

-he best approach to answering this question is to prepare specific examples of your successes and to
reference how you assessed the factors contributing to your achievements. Then share how you applied
this knowledge to continue your professional development and to generate positive results.
-You could reference a time when you led a team that was able to deliver a product ahead of schedule,
along with the steps the individuals took to ensure that high quality was maintained despite the
accelerated schedule.
-You could then share how you recognized each effort, and how you and your staff were able to
implement the technique on future deliverables.
-For example, you might say "I like to maintain a consistent level of productivity and take both my
successes and failures in stride. I try to learn from both and apply that knowledge to future situations.
-For example, last August my sales team landed P&Z as a client. We were all elated, and I took my staff
out for a celebratory dinner. I thought up a series of awards to recognize the role that individual staff
had played in the process, and saluted members of the team. I called a meeting for the next Tuesday to
break down the process and identified several strategies that contributed to our success. We discussed
new targets, and six months later landed another top consumer products client using some of the same

Do you consider yourself successful? Why?

-The easy part of your response is to assert confidently that you do consider yourself a success. Make
sure you look the recruiter in the eye and sell the statement with a confident tone. The more challenging
task, however, is to back up your assertion.
-Provide one or two examples of times when you have set and met a professional goal. Briefly explain
how you achieved each success perhaps you overcame an obstacle, effectively managed a team, or
budgeted your time effectively. The goal is to demonstrate your determination and willingness to take on
challenges and achieve results.

-You might also mention successes you hope to achieve in the future, or are currently working to
achieve. For example, if you mention your successful sales record, you may also want to explain how
you hope to improve upon that success in the future. This will demonstrate that you are hungry for new
challenges in the new position.
-Once you have established a basis for professional success, you can add a personal achievement, like
being a dedicated dad or marathon runner, in order to round out your answer.

How do you handle stress and pressure?

-For example, if you say you get stressed when you're given multiple projects, and you know the job
will require you to juggle many assignments at once, you will look unfit for the position.You might even
consider mentioning how a little stress can be a helpful motivator for you. You can provide an example
of a time the stress of a difficult project helped you be a more creative and productive worker.
-Pressure is very important to me. Good pressure, such as having a lot of assignments to work on, or an
upcoming deadline, helps me to stay motivated and productive. Of course, there are times when too
much pressure can lead to stress; however, I am very skilled at balancing multiple projects and meeting
deadlines, which prevents me from feeling stressed often. For example, I once had three large projects
due in the same week, which was a lot of pressure. However, because I created a schedule that detailed
how I would break down each project into small assignments, I completed all three projects ahead of
time and avoided unnecessary stress.
-I react to situations, rather than to stress. That way, the situation is handled and doesn't become
stressful. For example, when I deal with an unsatisfied customer, rather than feeling stressed, I focus on
the task at hand. I believe my ability to communicate effectively with customers during these moments
helps reduce my own stress in these situations and also reduces any stress the customer may feel.
-I actually work better under pressure and I've found that I enjoy working in a challenging environment.
As a writer and editor, I thrive under quick deadlines and multiple projects. I find that when I'm under
the pressure of a deadline, I can do some of my most creative work.

How would you describe yourself?

I'm a people person. I really enjoy meeting and working with a lot of different people, and am known for
being a great listener and clear communicator, whether Im engaging with colleagues or employers.

Are you lucky?

I consider myself extremely lucky in that I was given a remarkable education at XYZ University. I have
worked hard to take full advantage of that education, participating in multiple internships and
extracurricular in which I developed the skills and leadership qualities that make me the strong project
manager I am today.

Are you nice?

How to Respond if the Interviewer Doesn't Want you to be Nice

Sometimes, the interviewer does not want you to say you are nice; he or she might need an employee who is
competitive, or can firmly set high expectations for employees. If this is the case, personal anecdotes will once
again help you to answer the question.Even if the interviewer is looking for someone who is not nice, you still
do not want to provide lots of examples of how you are mean or uncooperative. Rather, provide an example of a
time when your firmness with an employee or colleague helped improve his or her performance. For example,
you might describe a situation where you needed to intervene with an under-performing employee by
establishing a plan for improvement, and perhaps eventually persuaded them to move on or fired them.You can
balance this response by emphasizing that you are still a cooperative employee, and that you listen to your
colleagues and staff members. This will demonstrate that you are driven and firm, but that you are also fair and
reasonable. Below is an example of this kind of response:
-While I am known to be understanding and cooperative, I am also known for being firm and setting
high expectations for my employees. For example, I recently dealt with an employee who consistently
turned in late and incomplete reports. After meeting with him to discuss how he could improve on his
reports in the future, he still failed to meet my expectations. I ultimately fired him. While this was
difficult, it was ultimately the right decision for the company and even for the struggling employee. I
value being fair but firm over being nice in the workplace.
If You're Not Sure Based on the job description and the interviewer, you can usually tell whether or not the
interviewer is asking you this because he is looking for nice employees or firm, tough employees. However, if
you are really unsure what the employer is looking for, provide an answer that demonstrates your ability to be
both compassionate and firm at work. One anecdote that describes your niceness and one that describes your
firmness will show the interviewer that you know which situations call for kindness.
Think About It The interviewer will ask you this question because he or she wants to make sure you will fit in
with the company environment. Therefore, if you are offered the job, think carefully about whether the
company environment is the right one for you. If you are a genuinely nice person, and the interviewer says he
wants employees who are not nice, you might want to think twice about taking the job. The question "Are you
nice?" will help both you and the interviewer decide if you are a good fit for the job.

Do you work well with other people?

How do you view yourself? Whom do you compare yourself to?

How would your co-workers describe your personality?

-My co-workers would say that I am very optimistic, and always look for creative solutions to problems.
When many people at my former job were upset about budget cuts to our department, I devised a few
clever ways to maintain some of our resources on this limited budget.

Is there anything else we should know about you?

-What motivates you? FAMILY

What do you find are the most difficult decisions to make?

What has been the greatest disappointment in your life?

My biggest disappointment is that I wasnt able to follow my dream of being a professional dancer. Even
though I was disappointed at the time, I realize now that if I had taken that direction, I would not have
my advanced degrees and a career I love.

What are you passionate about?

What are your hobbies?

What are your pet peeves?

What is your dream job?

What will you miss most about your last job?

What wont you miss about your last job?

Would you rather be liked or respected?

Why should I take a risk on you?

If you could relive the last 10 years of your life, what would you do differently?

Questions About Leaving Your Job

Employers almost always ask about why you left, or are leaving, your job. Be prepared with an explanation for
why you're moving on.

Why are you leaving your job?

Why do you want to change jobs?

Why were you fired?

Why were you laid-off?

Why did you quit your job?

Why did you resign?

What have you been doing since your last job?

Why have you been out of work so long?

Interview Questions About Salary

Some of the hardest questions to answer during a job interview are about compensation.
Here's what you will be asked and examples of the best answers.

What were your starting and final levels of compensation?

What are your salary expectations?

What are your salary requirements?

Why would you take a job for less money?

Questions About Qualifications

The most important thing for interviewers to determine is whether you're qualified for the job. Here's what they
will ask to find out.

What applicable experience do you have?

Are you overqualified for this job?

How did you impact the bottom line?

Interview questions about your abilities.

What can you do better for us than the other candidates for the job?

What part of the job will be the least challenging for you?

Which parts of this job are the most challenging for you?

What philosophy guides your work?

What strength will help you the most to succeed?

Why are you interested in taking a lower level job?

Why are you interested in a non-management job?

Questions About Job Performance

How you performed in previous roles can indicate how you will perform in the job for which you're applying.
Be prepared to answer questions about what you did well - and what you didn't.

What do people most often criticize about you?

What is the biggest criticism you received from your boss?

What is the worst thing that you have ever gotten away with?

What makes you angry?

What problems have you encountered at work?

What strategies would you use to motivate your team?

What would you be looking for in an applicant?

When was the last time you were angry? What happened?

Why weren't you promoted at your last job?

Tell me about something you would have done differently at work

If the people who know you were asked why you should be hired, what would they say?

What type of work environment do you prefer?

How do you evaluate success?

Describe a difficult work situation / project and how you overcame it.

Describe a time when your workload was heavy and how you handled it.

Interview Questions About Your Work History

Is your work history stable, has it prepared you for the job you're interviewing for, and do you have any gaps in
your employment history that the company should be concerned about? Here's what you'll be asked about.

Questions about your work history.

Questions about your resume.

What were your expectations for the job and to what extent were they met?

What were your responsibilities?

What major challenges and problems did you face? How did you handle them?

What have you learned from your mistakes?

What did you like or dislike about your previous job?

Which was most / least rewarding?

What was the biggest accomplishment / failure in this position?

Questions about job demotions.

How have you impacted worker safety?

Describe the gap in your employment history.

Questions About Management and Teamwork

How you get along with others, including both co-workers and managers, is important to all employers. Here
are some of the questions employers ask about getting along at work.

Who was your best boss and who was the worst?

Describe your ideal boss.

If you know your boss is 100% wrong about something how would you handle it?

What do you expect from a supervisor?

Have you ever had difficulty working with a manager?

How did you fit in with the company culture?

Describe how you managed a problem employee.

Do you prefer to work independently or on a team?

Give some examples of teamwork.

More teamwork interview questions.

Questions About Why You Should Be Hired

Why should you be hired over the other candidates? Here's when you'll have the opportunity to make the case
for getting a job offer.

Why should we hire you?

Why shouldn't we hire you?

Why should we hire you instead of the other applicants for the job?

Why are you the best person for the job?

What can you contribute to this company?

Interview Questions About the New Job and the Company

What do you know about the company, why do you want the job, and what would you do if you were to be
hired, are just some of the questions you'll be asked about the position and employer.

How is our company better than your current employer?

What interests you about this job?

What do you know about this company?

Why do you want this job?

Why do you want to work here?

What challenges are you looking for in a position?

What can we expect from you in the first 60 days on the job?

What do you see yourself doing within the first 30 days on the job?

Are you willing to travel?

What is good customer service?

What would be your ideal company culture?

When could you start work?

Is there anything I haven't told you about the job or company that you would like to know?

Interview Questions About the Future

Are you going to stick around if you're hired is something most employers want to know. All these questions
will gauge your interest in making a commitment.

What are you looking for in your next job? What is important to you?

What is your professional development plan?

Where do you see yourself 5 years from now?

Where do you see yourself in 10 years?

What are your goals for the next five years / ten years?

How do you plan to achieve your goals?

What will you do if you don't get this position?

Where else are you interviewing?

In addition to being ready to answer these standard questions, prepare for behavior-based interview questions.
This is based on the premise that a candidate's past performance is the best predictor of future performance. You
will need to be prepared to provide detailed responses including specific examples of your work experiences.
There are some interview questions, typically known as illegal interview questions, that employers should not
ask during a job interview. Here are questions that shouldn't be asked during a job interview and how to best
Have a phone interview on the agenda? Here are common questions asked during a telephone interview, plus
tips on how best to answer so you can move to the next stage of the interview process.
The last job interview question you may be asked is "What can I answer for you?" Have an interview
question or two of your own ready to ask. You aren't simply trying to get this job - you are also interviewing the
employer to assess whether this company and the position are a good fit for you.