How to answer the 9 most common interview questions

Going to an interview gives you a real chance to impress a hiring manager. There is no guarantee as to what you will be asked, but it would be nice to know that there are a number of questions that come up over and over again.

While we are sadly unable to read minds, it is important that you have powerful answers to these questions to help you make a big impact. Here are some of the most common interview questions and suggestions on how to answer them. Consider this your interview questions study guide.

  • Can you tell me about yourself?

This is usually an initial question. This is simple, many people do not prepare for it, but it is crucial. It is a great opportunity to show your strengths. You can start by responding with an overview of what you are doing now and what you have accomplished so far in your career. You can follow the same structure as your resume, giving some examples of your achievements and skills that you have acquired. Don’t be too detailed – the interviewer will ask you to expand on more details for the areas where you like more information.

  • Why should we hire you?

This question sounds daring, but you’re in luck if the hiring manager asked you. This is where you have the opportunity to tell the hiring manager about your skills and experience that is crucial in the job you are applying for.

Do not just tell your experience, explain how it could benefit the company.

  • What are your greatest strengths?

When answering this question, be precise. Share your true strengths, not the ones you think the employer wants to hear. Be relevant. Pick the strengths you will share that are most focused on the position.

  • What do you consider to be your weaknesses?

An interviewer wants to identify your self-awareness and honesty through this question. Think of something that you are struggling with but are working to improve. For example, you may find it difficult to speak in public, but you recently volunteered to hold seminars to help you feel more comfortable interacting with a crowd.

  • Where do you see yourself in 5 years?

Be honest and specific about your future goals. Consider that a hiring manager wants to know if you have set realistic expectations for yourself and your career, if you have an ambition, and if the position you are applying for is relevant to your goals and growth.

  • Why are you leaving your current job?

Definitely keep things positive. You have nothing to gain by being negative to your previous employers. Instead, show things in a way that you are eager to take advantage of new opportunities and the job you are applying for now will suit you better than your last position.

  • What are you looking for in a new position?

Be specific. You can say the same things that this position has to offer.

  • How do you handle pressure or stressful situations?

Choose an answer that shows that you can deal with a stressful situation in a productive and positive way. A better approach is to talk about your stress reduction tactics and share an example of a stressful situation you’ve been through.

  • Do you have any questions for us?

An interview is not just an opportunity for a hiring manager to meet you, it is also your chance to sniff out if this job is right for you. What do you want to know about the position? The company? In the actual interview, you may have a lot of questions, so it’s best to have common questions ready to go.

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