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Guide to Answering Common Interview Questions

Common Interview Questions

Interviews can be nerve-wracking, but with the right preparation and strategies, you can impress your potential employer and increase your chances of getting the job. In this article, we’ll discuss how to prepare and practice common interview questions to help you ace the interview and land the job.

Practice, Practice, Practice

Based on my experience, here’s how modern job seekers can effectively prepare for an upcoming interview:

2 out of 10: Dedicate an hour to preparation before the interview. Review the job description, consider their value proposition, research the company’s benefits on their website, and develop a list of three questions.

6 out of 10: Seek assistance from ChatGPT to generate interview answers based on the job description. Memorize these answers. Utilize LinkedIn to look up the individuals they will be interviewing with.

10 out of 10: Begin the preparation process by asking “why” questions. Strive to understand why the company is hiring, their pain points, and why they are the ideal candidate for the job. Analyze the job description thoroughly and thoughtfully craft answers that address the hiring manager’s concerns. Conduct several mock interviews, starting with an AI tool like Yoodli and then with an interview coach. Work on tone, body language, and pacing. Research the individuals they will be meeting with and consider ways to establish a personal connection with each person.

In today’s competitive job market, standing out from other candidates is essential. By preparing for your interview, you can highlight your unique skills and experiences that make you the best fit for the job. In this article, I share questions that you will likely be asked during your interview – PRACTICE!

Common Interview Questions

While you can’t predict every question you’ll be asked in an interview, there are some common questions that you can prepare for. These include questions about your strengths and weaknesses, your previous work experience, and why you’re interested in the position.

You need to prepare answers for each of these questions and PRACTICE saying them aloud. I’m a big fan of the tool Yoodli. The goal is not to memorize your answers, but to feel comfortable and confident delivering your answers.

There is a strong likelihood that you will get asked the following questions:

  • Tell me about yourself
  • Why XX company?
  • What is your greatest strength?
  • What is your greatest weakness?
  • Why are you leaving/why did you leave your job?
  • Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
  • Are you interviewing with any other companies?
  • Describe your understanding of diversity inclusion and why it is important to this position?
  • What makes you more likely to succeed in this role than other applicants?
  • What are you most proud of in your career?
  • What do you know about our company culture?

Common Behavorial Interview Questions

You should also prepare to answer some behavioral interview questions. The key to answering these questions is to use the STAR format. STAR stands for Situation, Task, Action, Result

Star Method

SITUATION: Explain the situation — Set the scene for the story

TASK: Describe the task or challenge, & identify any problems

ACTION: How did you approach the task? What actions did you take? Detail each step you took to address the problem. Spend the most time on this portion.

RESULT: What was the end result? What did you learn that could be applied to the position?

Practice Situational Responses

When answering behavioral questions, use the STAR method to structure your responses. It allows you to provide a clear and concise answer that highlights your skills and experiences. When preparing for an interview, practice using the STAR method to respond to situational questions and requests for examples. Write out an example story for each of the following scenarios:

  • How you prioritize
  • Difficult customer/colleague
  • Resistance to leadership change
  • Conflict
  • Customer service
  • Adaptability
  • Innovation
  • Working with cross functional teams
  • Ambiguity
  • Failure

Example of STAR Responses

The interviewer has just asked you a common interview question: “Give an example of a time when you were faced with CONFLICT at work. Explain how you handled the situation.”

A thoughtful answer using STAR method would be:

Situation: In my last role, I was responsible for making sure that the unit met project deadlines and maintained a high customer satisfaction score. One of my top-performing project managers was always late. The quality of her work was exceptional, but she was always a day late on delivery

Action: This was a problem because her tardiness was reflected in our customer satisfaction scores. I took the employee aside and tried to get to the root of why she was always late. She struggled with perfectionism and had a hard time ending assignments. We decided together that we would implement more partial project due dates which forced her to manage her time better and not get too in the weeds on the assignment. We also implement a project management tool called Trello.

Result: As a result, this exceptional employee started hitting project deadlines and our customer engagement score went up.

Ask for Help: Book a Coach

If you find yourself facing a high-stakes interview, it may be worth considering the benefits of working alongside an experienced interview coach. By enlisting the support of a third-party expert, you can make a valuable investment in your future success.

At Briefcase Coach, we pride ourselves on offering top-notch interview coaching services at a competitive rate of $219 per session. When you choose to work with us, you’ll have the opportunity to receive personalized feedback from either myself, Lisa (a former Korn Ferry recruiter), or Lindsay (a former SVP of Enterprise Performance). Our team is dedicated to helping you excel in your interviews and land the opportunities you desire.

Additional Interview Prep Resources

Ace Your Interview Prep

Dress For Success: What to Wear to an Interview



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