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Prep for the 10 Most Common Interview Questions

by Pat 18. November 2011 09:05

Be prepared for your next interview.  More than likely, you will be asked at least one of the following Most Common Interview Questions.

What Are Your Weaknesses?
Keep it business related.  This question can easily being answered by actually emphasizing your strengths.  Stating that you are constantly working to improve all of your abilities can show that you are open to change, ambitious and a hard worker.

Why Should We Hire You?
Summarize your positive attributes and experience.

Why Do You Want to Work Here?
Do your homework.  This is a good opportunity to impress the interviewer by letting them know you have researched the company and find what and how they do things is similar to your way thinking.  Stating actual facts and figures about the company is a definite bonus.

What Are Your Goals?
Easy.  This is a great chance to state your serious interest in this company.  State that you looking to obtain a position with a strong company with the potential for you to grow.

Why Did You Leave (Are You Leaving) Your Job?
Never badmouth your previous employer.  If you have been with your previous company for a long number of years, a good comment might be.  After 5 years of hard work and promotions, I found it was time to apply my experience on a new level.    If you're unemployed, you can state your reason for leaving in a positive manner: "I managed to survive two rounds of corporate downsizing, but the third round was a 20 percent reduction in the workforce, which included me."

If you are employed, focus on what you want in your next job: "After two years, I made the decision to look for a company that is team-focused, where I can add my experience."

When Were You Most Satisfied in Your Job?
The interviewer wants to know what motivates you. If you can relate an example of a job or project when you were excited, the interviewer will get an idea of your preferences. "I was very satisfied in my last job, because I worked directly with the customers and their problems; that is an important part of the job for me."

What Can You Do for Us That Other Candidates Can't?
What makes you unique? This will take an assessment of your experiences, skills and traits. Summarize concisely: "I have a unique combination of strong technical skills, and the ability to build strong customer relationships. This allows me to use my knowledge and break down information to be more user-friendly."

What Are Three Positive Things Your Last Boss Would Say About You?
It's time to pull out your old performance appraisals and boss's quotes. This is a great way to brag about yourself through someone else's words: "My boss has told me that I am the best designer he has ever had. He knows he can rely on me, and he likes my sense of humor."

What Salary Are You Seeking?
Doing your homework here can really help.  Knowing what the going rate in that area might be, or what someone with your experience is.  It is to your advantage if the employer tells you the range first. Prepare by knowing the going rate in your area, and your bottom line or walk-away point. One possible answer would be: "I am sure when the time comes, we can agree on a reasonable amount. In what range do you typically pay someone with my background?"

If You Were an Animal, Which One Would You Want to Be?
Interviewers use this type of psychological question to see if you can think quickly. If you answer "a bunny," you will make a soft, passive impression. If you answer "a lion," you will be seen as aggressive. What type of personality would it take to get the job done? What impression do you want to make?

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