Hopeful applicants often have difficulty preparing for an interview, especially figuring out what questions they could expect to be asked during the meeting.
Fortunately, most interviewers follow a common pattern of questioning that uses similar questions to each other. Companies focus on a cache of basic inquiries that sometimes vary but ultimately asks the same thing.
The most common set of questions that interviewers prepare are the Ws; who you are, why you are applying for this position at this company, and what you could contribute.
Harvard Business Review’s Cathy Salit said that doing an interview is essentially auditioning for a new role in life. She added that giving a good performance takes practice and dedication. To prepare for the crucial moment, here are some common questions you could expect to be asked during an interview.
1. What are your weaknesses?
One of the most difficult questions to answer is when you are asked about your weaknesses. Interviewers generally look for honest and realistic answers rather than “I can’t stop until I finish my work.” However, they also tend to frown on things like being intrusive to your coworkers’ private lives.
Employers do not ask this question for you to self-deprecate, which should be avoided during all interviews. On the other hand, when your interviewers ask what your weaknesses are, it gives you the opportunity to showcase your dedication to learning and to improve your work ethics.
The best way to answer is by talking about something that you find difficult, but add what you are doing to address the problem.
2. Why did you apply for this position?
Interviewers would always want to know the reasoning behind your application to their company and the position. Properly answering this question would greatly display how you could be a perfect fit for the job and the favorable characteristics of the company you are seeking to work with.
Additionally, you could tell your interviewer about your background leading to the position they are offering and how it could be a massively positive experience for your career.
3. Why did you leave your previous company?
Interviewers ask questions so they could get to know who you are, and the reason you left your previous job says a lot about your personality and priorities. However, avoid speaking negatively about your previous employer even if they did deserve it. It tells your potential new employer that you could badmouth them when you decide to transfer to another company.
The best way to tackle this question is by bringing up career growth and what you plan to do in the future. You could say that you were not really the best fit for your last job and that you wanted to look for another company that you could work with. The focal point is making your answer set in the future instead of looking at the past.
4. Tell me a bit about yourself.
One of the trickiest questions that interviewers could ask is more personal than professional. Being asked about who you are and how you are as a person could cause some people to panic and get if they are not prepared. However, since it is a rather common interview question, most applicants already expect to be asked, and more often than not, have an answer prepared.
The easiest way to answer this question is to break it down into three sections; what you are currently doing, what you did previously, and what you plan to do in the future. Make sure that your answers are relevant to the position you are looking to get. Additionally, talk about things that are not found on your resume, such as your passion for your field, said GlassDoor.com.