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How To Answer Tell Me About Yourself Interview Question

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Can You Tell Me About Yourself

How to Answer: Tell Me About Yourself.

The first rule of thumb for answering the Tell me about yourself question is to discuss what interests the interviewer. That means focusing on the experience and skills you have that will add value to the position.

Relevancy is key to properly answering this interview question. Carefully consider the most important job requirements when you prepare your answer. Keep it concise and targeted.

Providing evidence of your skills by detailing your accomplishments will set you apart from the other candidates. A clear and concise summary of what you can do for the company is what the interviewer wants to hear.

Giving proof of your suitability for the position will quickly convince the interviewer that you are a serious contender for the job.

If you are moving into a different industry you should highlight the transferable skills you can bring to the job in your interview answer.

Study the job and decide which of your competencies are relevant. Keep your answer focused on those qualities that are pertinent to the job.

When you are an entry level job candidate it is important to focus on your qualifications and any work experience you have. Your answer should include what you hope to achieve with your first job.

Remember that you don’t have to provide a long description of your qualifications, your time at college or your internships. Interviewers will pick up on those aspects they want to learn more about and will ask you questions to get further information.

Dont Get Too Personal

When you are asked to talk about yourself, it might feel like an open door to share about your entire life. Here is the unspoken part, though. You actually shouldnt share too much. You can definitely be vulnerable, share an experience that touched you, and things like that. However, you need to be aware that this is your first impression moment. Opening up too much, sharing about irrelevant personal topics, or talking about things that are going to make your interviewers pity younot the best first impression to make.

But What If I Dont Have Any Experience

But what if I dont have a super awesome story like that? What if Im still new-ish at this whole job thing and my stories arent as impressive?

Dont worry!

Just because you dont have a super awesome story like the one above doesnt mean you arent still a super awesome individual able to bring both professional and personal skills to the table that would make any employer sit up and take notice.

Heres the deal

More often than not, the company cares more about your ability to fulfill their needs than it does about what you did for another company.

Sure, it helps that your Success Story refers to practical on-job experience, but if you dont have that option you can draw from a different place.

For example, if you are a new graduate you can reference your academic achievements, athletic endeavors, charity and volunteer work.

If you had to work in any kind of group for any activity you can use these experiences as an example.

The fact of the matter is, the hiring manager has seen your resume and would not have brought you in if they didnt think you had at least some potential to do the job.

So reach back into your past and find some Success Stories to help answer the question.

If you dont have any experience and want a word-for-word sample answer then

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What To Remember When Answering The Question

First rule: Keep it simple and short. Do not go into details of your experience, education, or anything else. We will ask other questions that relate to your experience or education, later in the interviews. Just briefly introduce yourself, ideally in less than one minute. If we want to hear details, if something catches our attention, we will ask you to elaborate on it in your answer.

Second rule: Talk about things that matter. It is nice to hear that you have two brothers and live in a small city. But it has absolutely no significance for our decision in an interview. Try to speak about things that matter to us. To such belong: why you are a good adept for the job, what you seek in your career right now, the most essential skills and abilities you have, the value you can bring to our team, etc.

You see, from the first moment we should get a feeling that you believe to be the right match for the job. We should understand the things we will gain if we decide to sign a job contract with you. You can mention some details of your personal lifea hobby, or passion you have, just to show us that you have some life outside of work as well.Life is more than just work after all

* Do not forget to check:How to dress for an interview. Every detail matters, and you should do it right while you can

The Purpose Behind The Question

How+to+Answer+the+âTell+Me+About+Yourselfâ?+Interview ...
  • Tell me about your career journey.
  • Can you expand on your resume?
  • Talk to me about your career.
  • Walk me through your professional background.
  • What brings you here today?
  • Recently, I…
  • My background is in…
  • For # years…
  • Currently, I am…
  • While working with…
  • I’ve been working in…
  • I plan to…
  • I’ve discovered…
  • After realizing that…

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Regurgitate Your Cover Letter And Resume

I touched on this in the section above. This is not an invitation for you to simply list off your past accomplishments.

Yes, its important for you to highlight moments in your past when you were successful, but the real power lies in highlighting the accomplishments that are most relevant to this specific position .

Stand Out By Tailoring Your Answer To The Company

The end of your interview answer is a big opportunity to customize your answer for the company and job youre interviewing for.

When you talk about what youre looking to do next in your career, try to mention whatever you see this company providing for your career

That shows them why youre excited about their job, which will help you get hired!

Before we move on to more tips and a HUGE mistake to avoid, heres one more example interview answer for this question.

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How To Answer An Unstructured Interview Question

Heres the deal.

A good interview candidate always prepares before she goes in for an interview. She does her research. She works on her resume and cover letter.

She runs through hundreds if not thousands of practice interview questions and refines her answers until theyre tailored, precise, and perfectand interviewers know this.

Theyre not stupidthats why theyre the ones doing the interviews!

Their job is to find the perfect candidate and weed out the less than ideal matchesand its a tough job, especially when faced with hundreds of candidates who have all worked equally hard.

So a casual or unstructured question is one thats meant to throw you off your game and break you free from the memorized answers.

Rather than simply parroting back something youve studied for hours, youre being called on to speak freely and off the cuff.

But why would they want to throw you off your game?

Well, chances are the position they are hiring for is going to require the candidate to make some decisions and think on his/her feet.

Anyone can prepare for a situation that they know is coming, much like anyone can prepare for an interview question that they know is coming.

Why Do Interviewers Ask Tell Me About Yourself

How to answer TELL ME ABOUT YOURSELF interview question

Part of any application process is self-reflection and self-evaluation. What values are important to you? What drives and motivates you? Why do you want to be a doctor? How do other people see you? How do you see yourself? What is unique about you? This is really the type of information that interviewers are probing at when they ask you to talk to them about yourself. All too often, however, applicants interpret this question as Tell me about your application and either recite their CV or how they came to apply to a particular program. Its important to keep in mind that, if someone wanted to know about your professional background, they would be asking about that instead. Youve already provided this information in your application. Paper applications allow you to demonstrate who you are as an applicant, but Tell me about yourself is your chance to demonstrate who you are as a person.

You shouldnt feel like you have to completely ignore talking about your professional background. In fact, probably a great deal of your academic and extra-curricular experiences have shaped who you are as a person. Still, its important to balance your personal and professional sides provide insight into the kind of worker youll be and the kind of colleague you are. You can structure your response in just this way.

Check out our video on how to answer “Tell me about yourself”:

Also Check: What Are Some Good Interview Questions To Ask A Candidate

How To Nail Tell Me About Yourself

Think of it as your elevator pitch. An elevator pitch is a short summary used to quickly and simply define a product, service, or business and its value proposition. It answers the question: Why should I buy/invest? It should be concise enough to be delivered during a short elevator ride .

You need an elevator pitch for yourself as a job candidate and it should be customized for different opportunities. Keep it focused and short, ideally less than a minute, and no more than 2 minutes.

You wont be able to fit all of your great qualities and resume high points into 2 minutes, so youll have to spend some time thinking about how to present yourself in a way that starts the interview on the right note.

A great answer will address the following:

  • What are your primary selling points for this job? This could be a number of years of experience in a particular industry or area of specialization. You might also highlight special training and technical skills here. Focus on the qualifications in the job description and how you meet and exceed the requirements.
  • Why are you interested in this position right now? You can wrap up your answer by indicating why you are looking for a new challenge and why you feel this role is the best next step.

How to Answer

Answers To Common Interview Questions

To perform exceptionally well in a job interview, the job candidate has to be prepared. In the series on Answers to Common Interview Questions, here is a possible response to Tell me about yourself. This question is usually the ice-breaker that sets the tone for the interview. For todays question, although the interviewer is asking you about yourself, she is expecting you to tie in your response to the job that you are interviewing for. She is not interested in where you grew up or any of your hobbies. Its not really about you, its about the companys needs. Provide a complete understanding of your background and your aspirations as they relate to the prospective position. So throughout your response to this common interview question, focus on your knowledge, skills, abilities and experiences that will be likely the most relevant.

The answer works because it is giving a glimpse into the candidates background and her aspiration. Her response demonstrates how she is the answer to the organizations problems in a very non-arrogant way. She is simply presenting the facts. Remember that the response offered to the common interview question, Tell me about yourself is only a guide, and therefore it is the job candidates responsibility to tweak the advice offered.

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Tell Me About Yourself Answer

The personal statement is a crucial part of university applications, so catch the eye of the admission committee by adequately structuring your answer and supporting it with relevant examples.

Start with a brief about yourself, highlight your accomplishments, and finally list the differentiators. Overall, make sure to highlight the following factors:

  • Educational background along with positions held, and awards or commendations received in your previous school or college.
  • Your motivation behind choosing the course/subject. It would be best if you wrote about why you want to study your chosen course, your interest in the subject, and how you will be a good fit.
  • Supplement your essay with relevant skills and knowledge. Make it more impactful by listing your hobbies/passions and life goals.

Protip Try employing the remarkable necklace approach, i.e., linking your opening sentence and closing paragraph to reinforce and add an extra dimension at the end.

For example, if you started your essay on tell me about yourself with the motivation behind choosing a specific degree course, you could link it back to it in your closing paragraph by concluding that you would love to study this subject at the University.

Tips For Answering Tell Me About Yourself

Common interview questions: Tell me about yourself
  • Bring a blend of professional and personal. We outlined two ways of approaching your response to tell me about yourself, but a really strong answer will blend the two seamlessly. In discussing your professional achievements, indicate what personal qualities helped you accomplish them.

    When discussing your personal interests, tie them into relevant professional qualities. This way, the interviewer can learn about your personality and background in one efficient answer.

  • Keep your answer short. Remember that this is the opening question of a much longer job interview. Pace yourself and save some content for later on. Plus, if you overwhelm the interviewer with too much information, theyre less likely to absorb the really important stuff.

  • Be authentic. Its hard to be 100% real with an interviewer, but you want to come across in as genuine a way as possible. If a stuffy, professionally-minded answer doesnt feel like you, then dont answer that way. At the end of the day, you want to be hired for who you actually are. Otherwise, you probably wont be very happy at your new job.

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Preparing To Answer: Tell Me About Yourself

Now that Ive discussed five topmost ways to answer the question: Tell me about yourself, I will discuss how you should prepare.

Never commit the blunder of speaking from your CV or Resume while responding to this question. And use business etiquette to sound very professional, even if youre a fresher applicant.

How Did You Come Across The Job Opening

Do not answer this question like you randomly came across it on job boards and thought, okay, let me just apply. Your answer should be like you have always wanted to work for the company and found the right opportunity now to work for the company since. You can tell you have learned about the opening from a friend and that you are excited about it.

Also Check: How To Be Ready For A Phone Interview

Points To Remember Before You Attend This Interview Question:

  • Assume, now you are sitting in front of the HR manager.
  • Take the initiative to attend this question and tell your real answers.
Sunny Pandey said:
Good morning sir/mam.My name is Sunny Pandey and I live in Gurgaon, Haryana but basically, my hometown is Bihar, I have completed my 10th and 12th from HSBE board as well as I also have completed my graduation from Meerut University and we are five members in my family, my father who is working in a private company as an accountant and my mother is a housewife and my wife she also is a housewife, we have little champ in our family who is 9th months old now. I have totally 4 years exp. now I’m currently working for siti networks ltd for 2 years as a customer care executive.My hobbies are playing cricket, watching tv, traveling with friends and family etc.My strengths are I am punctual and positive think.Hard-worker, never give up, I can work in underpressue, I’m flexible to learn new things.My Weakness isI can’t say no to the people who need help in their work.My biggest weakness is that I believe easliy anyone.That’s it all about me.Thank you for giving me a great opportunity to introduce myself.

Example Answer If Youre Job Searching While Employed:


Well, Im currently working at XYZ Company and I specialize in doing ___. The reason I applied for this job is I saw ___ on the job description and I think I would be able to help you ___ and ___. One of my key accomplishments in my current role was helping my employer do ___, and Im confident I can help your team get similar results here.

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Key Points To Remember While Answering Tell Me About Yourself:

  • Customize your answer as per the job role and company requirements from the candidate.
  • Do not just recite your resume provide something valuable with your answer and that too, in a concise way.
  • Tell about your skills, experience, strengths, etc. in such a way so that it will depict how you are the ideal candidate for the particular job role.
  • Do not get too personal or bring up sensitive topics like religious views, political views, etc. in your answer.
  • Practice your answer before the interview to feel confident but make sure that it wont look too rehearsed.
  • Lastly, try to be positive and deliver your answer confidently.

    So, all you need to do is follow the above-mentioned approaches and keep your answer concise & relevant and then no one can stop you to shine in your upcoming interview!!

    My Personal Notesarrow_drop_up

  • Why Did You Choose The Company

    Take your time researching the company. Learn about what they are currently working on. Try to align your company’s interests with your professional goals. Your answer must express your interest in joining the company. Think about what made you choose this company. Is it because you like the products the company is launching or the progress it has made in recent years? Learning about the company will help you answer the next question after “Tell me about yourself”,, i.e. Why did you choose this company?”

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