Behavioral Interview Questions To Prepare For
Behavioral interview questions are often asked in job interviews to gauge how successful you are at problem-solving. These questions can provide the interviewer with insight into your personality, skills and abilities. Because each behavioral interview question requires you to share a specific story that highlights your strengths and skills, thoughtful preparation can help you feel confident and prepared.
In this article, we offer some tips for preparing and responding to questions by topic and also offer 10 sample questions and examples to help you form your own answers.
What Do You Consider To Be Your Biggest Professional Achievement
Here’s an interview question that definitely requires an answer relevant to the job. If you say your biggest achievement was improving throughput by 18 percent in six months but you’re interviewing for a leadership role in human resources, that answer is interesting but ultimately irrelevant.
Instead, talk about an underperforming employee you “rescued,” or how you overcame infighting between departments, or how so many of your direct reports have been promoted.
The goal is to share achievements that let the interviewer imagine you in the position — and see you succeeding.
Tell Me About A Time You Made A Mistake
Youre probably not too eager to dig into past blunders when youre trying to impress an interviewer and land a job. But talking about a mistake and winning someone over arent mutually exclusive, Moy says. In fact, if you do it right, it can help you. The key is to be honest without placing blame on other people, then explain what you learned from your mistake and what actions you took to ensure it didnt happen again. At the end of the day, employers are looking for folks who are self-aware, can take feedback, and care about doing better.
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What Is Your Leadership Style
This is a tough question to answer without dipping into platitudes. Try sharing leadership examples instead. Say, “The best way for me to answer that is to give you a few examples of leadership challenges I’ve faced,” and then share situations where you dealt with a problem, motivated a team, worked through a crisis. Explain what you did and that will give the interviewer a great sense of how you lead.
And, of course, it lets you highlight a few of your successes.
Here Are The Most Commonly Asked Interview Questions You Can Expect To Be Asked In Your Interview And Advice On How You Can Craft Effective Responses
Know these popular interview questions and answers.
Too many job seekers stumble through interviews as if the questions asked are coming out of left field. But many interview questions are to be expected. Need some job interview tips? Monster has you covered. Study this list of popular and frequently asked interview questions and answers ahead of time so you’ll be ready to answer them with confidence.
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What Is Your Current Salary
Of all the tough interview questions you might be asked, salary interview questions might be some of the toughest to answer.
Of course, every job seeker wants to get the highest possible salary. But should you disclose your current salary to a potential employer? The short answer is no, if you can help it.
Heres why: Several states and localities now bar employers from asking this question in an attempt to end pay discrimination, which can happen when employers continuously base a persons salary on what a previous employer paid them, says Brie Reynolds, FlexJobs Career Development Manager and Coach.
Even if you live in a state where this question is legal, here are some ways to answer that dont force you to disclose your current salary, thereby locking you into a cycle of lower pay than youre actually worth:
- Before we discuss pay, Id like to learn more about the full scope of the role.
- Id be happy to discuss salary and Im interested to know what you had in mind for the pay range for this role.
- Im looking for a range of $75,000 to $85,000 for this type of role and Im very open to talking it through further.
- Would you be able to tell me more about the budget or range for this role?
How Would Your Professors/friends/co
This can be a challenging question if you havent thought about it ahead of time. Consider recent feedback youve received, both positive and negative. The interviewers main goal is to ensure you have a clear understanding of how youre perceived by others and understand how your actions impact them. To prove that youre self-aware, consider answering with two positive traits and one area for improvement. For example:
The other members of student council might say that Im an extremely effective leader as president. They also nicknamed me Mr. Congeniality because I get along with everyone. But theyd also say that I sometimes take on too many things at once. Im trying to delegate more.
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Tell Me About A Challenge Or Conflict Youve Faced At Work And How You Dealt With It
Youre probably not eager to talk about conflicts youve had at work during a job interview. But if youre asked directly, dont pretend youve never had one. Be honest about a difficult situation youve faced . Most people who ask are only looking for evidence that youre willing to face these kinds of issues head-on and make a sincere attempt at coming to a resolution, former recruiter Richard Moy says. Stay calm and professional as you tell the story , spend more time talking about the resolution than the conflict, and mention what youd do differently next time to show youre open to learning from tough experiences.
Other Basic Interview Questions
- Tell me about a successful team project that you have been involved in. What was your role and what made it a success?
- What do you enjoy about this industry?
- Give me an example of when your work was criticized. How did you react?
- Give me an example of a time when you didnt get along with co-workers or bosses. What did you do?
- Do you prefer to work alone or in a group? Why?
- What are you looking for in a company?
- How do you measure your own performance?
- What kind of pressures have you encountered at work?
- Are you a self-starter? Give me examples.
- What can you bring to this organization?
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Why Havent You Gotten Your Masters Degree/phd
As a start, keep in mind that the interviewer isnt judging you for your decision.
After all, if they were looking for someone with a better degree, they wouldnt have invited you to an interview. The degree is not the dealbreaker here, but your answer to the question might be.
When asking this question, the interviewer is trying to see your reasoning for pursuing a career instead of getting another degree.
Heck, theres a chance that if you give them the right answer, theyre even going to like you more than someone with 3 Phds!
So, simply explain why you didnt think that another degree was the right thing for you at the time.
Dont say you were lazy or didnt feel like it, or that its a waste of money .
Instead, give compelling arguments, such as
- You wanted to see whether your field was the right one for you.
- You didnt have the financial resources at the time.
- You wanted to get some practical work experience before committing to another degree.
- Sample Answer 1:
At this stage of my life, I decided to pursue my career instead of further education. On the one hand, I want to make sure that Marketing is what I want to do with my life.
On the other hand, I believe that in my field, practical work experience is a lot more valuable than academic.
So far, my decision has paid off pretty well – Ive already gotten a lot of experience doing online marketing for 3+ companies and delivering awesome results to boot.
- Sample Answer 2:
What Salary Do You Expect To Make
Talking about salary is never really comfortable, but its part of almost every job interview. Some companies might require you to give an exact number, or at least a salary range expectation, so be prepared with some numbers just in case. However, if they dont ask, you dont have to name a number. Giving a number might limit you to the amount you quoted, when the company was actually prepared to pay more.
Do your research on job search sites like Indeed or Glassdoor to find out what the market value is for that position. Then, when asked the question, say something like, My expectation is that Id be paid the market value.
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Why Should We Hire You Sample Answer
“I’m the best person for this job because Im able to be reactive and to handle unexpected situations. For example, when I was working at l, the CEO had a sudden airplane accident just few months before a big conference about energy and climate. We needed to change a part of the program that we had already planned, and we did. I had to change all the off-line and on-line presentations, tell all the speakers about the new program and the impact on their speech, and send new invitations, etc., on a very short-term deadline. I prefer to stay positive and see the opportunity in the difficulty, and this would allow me to help you with your program.”
This answer is the right length.
Looking for more help? I offer several interview coaching services.
Why Was There A Gap In Your Employment
Maybe you were taking care of children or aging parents, dealing with health issues, or traveling the world. Maybe it just took you a long time to land the right job. Whatever the reason, you should be prepared to discuss the gap on your resume. Seriously, practice saying your answer out loud. The key is to be honest, though that doesnt mean you have to share more details than youre comfortable with. If there are skills or qualities you honed or gained in your time away from the workforcewhether through volunteer work, running a home, or responding to a personal crisisyou can also talk about how those would help you excel in this role.
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How Did You Hear About This Job
When asked this during an interview, donât just say you heard about the job on a website. This is your opportunity to go into more detail about why you love this company and what motivates you to want to work there. Moreover, if you have a personal connection at the company, this would be a good time to mention their name!
Talk About The Future
A lot of interview questions are going to be about your past: Past experience, past successes, past failures.
But one key to giving great interview answers is to talk about the future too.
When you give answers about your skills and experience, also talk about the future and how youll use those skills to perform well in their role.
Mention something you saw on the job description, or something they mentioned earlier in the conversation, that makes you think your background will be useful to them in this role!
This is one of the best ways to answer any interview question and most job seekers dont do this.
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No matter how many you go on, job interviews can always be nerve-wracking. You put on your nicest clothes, print out your resume, and remind yourself to smile real bigâand just when you think everything is going well, the interviewer hits you with a curveball question you arenât prepared for.
Luckily, youâre not going to let that happen again and youâre planning ahead to ace this monthâs interview. The best way to for anything is to do your research ahead of timeâwhich is why weâre here to help.
If youâre preparing for a big interview during COVID-19, prepping beforehand with these 15 interview questions will help you get one step closer to that dream job.
What Initiative Will You Take To Increase Sales
When sales are low, I maintain a high level of attention and organization. I devise a strategic outreach strategy. The strategy emphasizes consistency and specific activity quantities. Consider the following scenario: Make a total of 20 telephone conversations to previous and high-potential customers. Send 30 emails per day that are highly applicable to expanding new and existing company prospects, and then go out there after getting additional meetings/appointments.
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Speak With High Energy And Enthusiasm
Showing enthusiasm is an important part of giving good answers in an interview.
Its okay if youre an introvert or naturally quiet you dont have to be the most outgoing, bubbly personality to get hired.
Just turn it up a bit
Do slightly more than you usually do in terms of energy in your tone of voice and body language.
Tone of voice is especially important when answering questions in phone interviews since they cant see your facial expressions or body language.
If you need help showing energy and enthusiasm in your voice, try standing up and smiling when you talk on the phone. This may sound odd, but its a proven trick that phone salespeople use all the time.
What Are Your Hobbies
Try not to overthink this question. Hiring managers dont ask it to trip you up. Rather, they genuinely want to make sure youre a good fit for their company personality-wise. Again, honesty is the best policy here. You dont want to lie and say something you think is impressivelike that karate is one of your hobbiesonly to find out the hiring manager is a black belt and wants to know more about your dojo.
Avoid anything political, religious, or that could have a negative connotation , unless youre applying to a job where you know such answers are appropriate. Simply share two or three hobbies that show commitment and illustrate you have a life outside of work. For example:
One of my favorite hobbies is running. I try to run every day and run about ten 5Ks a year. It helps me relax and get outside of my head. I especially love running to raise money for causes Im passionate about, like the Humane Society. I have two rescue dogs, who are really fun, so I love spending time with them, too.
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Consider How Your Current Job Relates To The Job You’re Applying For
Describing how your current responsibilities translate to the open role shows you’re capable of excelling within the position. If you’re applying for a job with a higher level of responsibilities, explain that you’re willing to accept more tasks and learn more to advance your career. For a move into a new field, pick one or two duties that relate to the new job to show you have transferrable skills.
What Are Your Weaknesses
Sharing your weaknesses shows that you are self-aware. Be honest about how you have worked through challenging experiences. If possible, include how you’ve improved on these over time.
Example:Earlier in my career, I was so enthusiastic about my work that I would say yes’ when I should have been saying no.’ Being overwhelmed, the stress affected my production quality. I started using workload management tools to tailor more realistic goals.’
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What Are You Hoping To Gain From This Job
The wrong answer to this difficult interview question can be costly. Employers want to know that they are more than just a paycheck to you. They want to feel as if there is a genuine partnershipbetween them and their staff.
So tell the hiring manager how youd like to grow in this position, the things you hope to learn, and the experiences youd like to have if you were hired for this job.
Your answer could include, Im hoping to grow my knowledge in this industry, and I would particularly look forward to taking on the tasks of , , and .
Make A List Of Examples
Interviewers develop questions to determine how successful a candidate will be, given the specific tasks of the job. Obviously, you want to present your experiences as clearly as you can, using real examples, and highlighting situations where you were successful.
Learn how to use the STAR interview technique to give well thought out and complete answers.
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+ Interview Questions And Answers
The time has come!
After creating a killer resume and cover letter and passing the first round, it is time to face the final challenge:
Your job interview.
And that scares even to the best of us.
Being judged and evaluated by people who have your future in their hands is more anxiety-inducing than meeting the in-laws.
Youve heard the interviewers and hiring managers say there are no right or wrong answers to calm you down before an interview.
But heres the thing:
They are almost always looking for a specific way of answering.
Which brings us to this guide. Were going to cover the most common interview questions and answers, turning you into a bona fide interview expert by the time youre done reading.
So, lets get started!
To make this guide as practical as possible, we covered just about every interview question out there.
Dont let that put you off, though. You dont have to read the whole thing end-to-end. To get the most out of the guide, wed recommend:
Most Common Interview Questions:
Behavioral Questions in an Interview: