Thursday, June 20, 2013

4 Common Job Interview Questions And How To Answer Them

No two job interviews are exactly the same but there are some similarities. This is especially true when it comes to the questions an employer will ask you.

Along with questions tailored specifically for the job, hiring managers will often ask a series of questions to get a sense of your personality. These questions are designed to be deceptively simple, and can often trip up job seekers as a result, causing them to give an answer that makes them look bad.

This is obviously something you will want to avoid so you should make it a point to thoroughly prepare your answers to these questions. Below are four of the most common "personality questions" you will be asked by employers and how you should go about answering them:
  • "Can you tell me a little bit about yourself?" This is not an invitation to give the interviewer your life story. You should prepare a two- or three-minute summary of your work history and your future goals to answer this question.
  • "Why do you want to leave your current job?" This is arguably one of the hardest questions to answer. If you say you are looking for a new opportunity, the hiring manager might take that to meant that you get bored easily and if you say you just want a bigger paycheck, it will give the impression that you are all about money. The best way to approach this question is to be as specific as possible: The goals of the company changed and they didn't align with your beliefs, you felt that your current job wasn't giving you a good opportunity to grow as a professional and that you think this job would better suit those needs, etc.
  • "What are your biggest strengths? Weaknesses?" For your strengths, say something that aligns with the responsibilities of the position. For weaknesses, avoid contrite phrases ("I'm too much of a perfectionist) in favor of something more realistic and mention what steps you are taking to improve in that area.
  • "What are your salary expectations?" It's best to avoid discussing salary and benefits until the end of the hiring process but if it is bought up earlier, give a salary range rather than a specific number. Your lowest number should represent what will allow you to live your lifestyle comfortably.


  1. Not sure I agree with the timeliness of these questions. My recent job interviews have all been very specific such as:
    1. Tell us about a problem you've encountered at work and what you did to solve it.
    2. Tell us about interpersonal conflicts you've had and the role you played in making your team work better together.
    3. Tell us about the biggest challenge a team of yours has faced and your strategies to successfully meet them, etc.

    I don't really recall the weakness & strength question, not for years at least. My feelings on my recent interviews were that they all focused on ME as a worker. I struggled with them because I've always been a team-based person and that every success belongs to the team not an individual.

    I wish I knew how to answer THOSE questions! ;)

    1. Thanks for your comments! Those are the questions I have noticed in my experience though, as your experience shows, it's not the case 100 percent of the time.

    2. I would love to see a future post help us deal with those questions... How to not appear as a star quarterback (everything great happened thanks to ME) when answering those questions!

  2. Tks very much for your post.

    Avoid surprises — interviews need preparation. Some questions come up time and time again — usually about you, your experience and the job itself. We've gathered together the most common questions so you can get your preparation off to a flying start.

    You also find all interview questions at link at the end of this post.

    Source: Top 10 interview questions and answers

    Best rgs