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The 10 Most Asked Interview Questions | Are You Prepared?

By James Lewis May 12, 2019 222

10 Classic Interview Questions (and how to answer them)
Below are some questions that regularly come up during interviews. The main thing is to have done your research on the company and the position and to think through what the interviewer is trying to achieve by asking them. Think about your answers and prepare & practice your responses, but not word for word as you will have to adjust the answer depending on the situation.

1. Can You Tell Me a Bit About Yourself?
A very common interview opener. The best way to deal with this one is to prepare a short statement that summarises your professional/working life rather than your personal life. Don’t just repeat what’s on your CV, but in a brief story format explain what drew you to that kind of work & your journey to where you are now in your career.

2. Why Did You Leave Your Last Job?
The one important thing you need to remember here is never speak badly of a former employer. ‘I decided to change career direction & look for new opportunities’ for example should be perfectly sufficient.

3. What do you know about our company?
Do your research. You should of course know what the company does (I have interviewed people who don’t!), it’s recent accomplishments, its history & understand its goals

4. What Kind of Salary Do You Expect?
You should research the salary range before the interview, but you don’t have to give a direct answer to this one. Explain that money is not your primary motivation for seeking the position, turn the question around & ask what range they are offering.

5. Why Should We Hire You?
Explain why your skills and experience relate to the position being offered. But also remember that this question is really about what sets you apart from the other candidates, so think about what you uniquely bring to the role.

6. What is your greatest weakness?
There are a number of ways of answering this but the main objective is not to shoot yourself in the foot & cast doubt on your ability to do the job. Either mention qualities that perhaps aren’t important for the role, mention skills that perhaps you are working on or present a weakness as a positive (eg tendancy to be a perfectionist) if it suits the role.

7. What Is Your Greatest Strength?
Slightly easier than 6., make sure you include an example of how you used your strength to generate results in the past.

8. What Motivates You?
Remember this is about your professional motivation, not personal. Make sure your answer is focused on the value you hope to offer the organisation.

9. Why Do You Want To Work For Us?
Once again, do your research first – and ask yourself the same question!
You need to demonstrate that you want to become ‘part of the family’. Don’t say because you need the money – it’s only funny to you. Find a way to show that you line up with the company eg ‘Your company seems to be more innovative than your competitors and I want to be on the cutting edge’

10. Do You Have Any Questions for Me?
Almost always the final question, don’t ask a question that could be answered by looking at the company’s website. The interviewer is trying to gauge whether you are interested, informed & engaged. Prepare a list of insightful questions eg What does a typical day look like? What are the biggest challenges that someone in this position would face? What are the performance expectations of this position over the first 12 months?

Naturally, there are a lot of other potential questions or variations on the above, but I’ll say it one more time – DO YOUR RESEARCH!
If you get blindsided by a random question, think before you answer rather than saying the first thing that comes into your head. A quiet, thoughtful pause will give you a moment to think and show the interviewer that you are looking to respond intelligently.
Think about what they are trying to get from your response.

Good Luck!