Preparing for your interview
You finally landed an interview after applying for over 20 jobs. For any good interview, you need to be aware of common questions and how to answer them without blinking.
When you go in for an interview you are almost always going to be asked an opening line of: “Tell me a little bit about yourself.” This is not an opportunity to give a long story starting back from the day you were born to now. Instead, employers are looking for a short snippet that can get the ball rolling.
This is also a good time to sell yourself. If you visited a town in which you had a previous job or internship in, drop it in the conversation. They might ask more questions based on that experience, and you’ll already be warmed up to answer them.
After you answer some warm-up questions, an interviewer will ask common interview questions based off of your application and/or resume.
Depending on your experience, interviewers are likely to ask, “Give me an example of something bad/good that happened at your previous job(s).” This question is an easy common question.
Always answer the bad example with something that was out of your control, like an internet problem, insubordinate guest, or system crash. However, always end on a good note by giving an example of how the problem was resolved. It helps show your initiative and ability to problem solve. You can answer a good example in a way that a previous company was benefited by a customer or solution
For some reason, common interview questions always want to have a good and bad example. Another common good/bad question is when you’re asked about yourself. This question also considers your character and could be a deal breaker.
Always answer this question with the job requirements in mind. Your strengths and weaknesses will be applied and considered. Interviewers want to know how it will apply to your job performance.
So, while you’ve read all about how this one question could make or break the interview, it’s time to learn how to have a top-notch response. Always answer the strengths with anything that deals with time, money, computers, or memory. These show that you know how to handle a range of job requirements.
Also, know what to avoid in your weakness answer and how to be smart in your answer. Always answer with a positive twist, because it shows an interviewer that you know how to handle tough questions. Avoid using negative phrases such as “weak” or “failure” and address how you’re working on your weakness.
Always answer with something that is outside of the job requirements such as, lack of knowledge on a subject (that could be learned), too helpful, working too many hours, or even creativity. These simple answers will show that you’re not a robot and won’t break the interview.
Once you nail the hard common interview questions, you’ll be asked about the job itself and if anything will change from what you put on the application. Common questions address availability if your availability will change within a certain time frame, if you will have trouble with the job requirements, if you can meet company standards and if you have any problems with what’s required of you.
Answer these questions honestly. Interviewers want to make sure that if they hire you, you can fulfill the requirements without a problem. However, be sure to let the interviewer become aware of a future or current medical issue or disability that needs to be addressed.
Your interview is an opportunity to land a job and sell yourself. By being aware of what is required of you and how to answer the common questions, you can land your dream job.