Much has been written on the actual face to face interview and how to ask and answer questions effectively. The following will provide our top 10 tips on succeeding in the interview and our top questions that you should be prepared to answer plus the top 10 questions you need to ask when it is your turn.
Tips for Success
Questions You Need to Answer
The first group of questions you will probably face are the standards listed below. The right way to answer these questions is to direct them, whenever possible, to the needs of the company you want to work for.
For example: Get your career objectives and interests aligned with the requirements of the job and the culture of the company.
Obviously, you should try and put a positive spin on any potential negatives. For example: Describe your weaknesses in such a way that you highlight one of your strengths. Examples: you could have an inability to tolerate people who do half a job, or that you tend to work too many hours, or you push too hard to do a perfect job etc.
Don’t lie or make things up. You don’t want to get a job that isn’t right for you. In the long run you’ll be unhappy and right back looking again. Rather think through these questions for thoughtful, substantive answers that reflect the real you.
Questions to be Prepared to Answer
Common sense will be sufficient to get you through these types of questions. The key is to have well- thought-out answers prepared and ready.
The more complex and challenging interviews involve the “tell me about a time” questions. These questions are designed to elicit personal, life experiences that reflect your ability to accomplish various aspects of the job.
If the company needs a person who can respond well to pressure, they might ask the following:
“Tell me about a time in business when you were faced with an enormous amount of pressure and how you responded."
If the company needs someone who can get along with difficult people, they might ask: “Tell me about a time when you had to work with a very frustrating person and how you handled it?
And here’s the hard part. You can’t brush these questions off by saying. “I can’t remember anything specific right now." Part of the interview process is to allow you lots of time to think when you are having a hard time recalling. The interviewer will say something like: “Take your time, there is no hurry,” and then just sit there while you think and sweat and think and sweat.
This is not meant to make you uncomfortable but rather to allow all the necessary time to get answers. It is a proven and very effective way to interview, so do yourself a favor and prepare ahead of time.
Some “Tell Me About A Time” Questions
You get the idea. These are tough, but fair and realistic questions to ask on an interview. Prepare yourself by thinking of a number of work situations where you had to exhibit certain qualities. Have real situations on hand and you will be ready to shine.
Questions to Ask the Company
This is your chance to ask the tough questions of the interviewer and the company. It’s a chance for you to look interested and informed about the industry and the specific job. Here are some ideas.