The Questions They Always Ask

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They are about asking the right questions. As an interviewer , being asked good questions keeps me energized, engaged and interested in the person I am meeting. When I hear a question, I think about my answer and I also anticipate what might have motivated someone to ask that and what it says about them — is their question insightful and considered or could they have perhaps done more to prepare?

How to Answer Interview Questions That Employers Always Ask

The candidates I recommend we hire, are those who clearly show me that they want to be here; they are as engaged and committed to the interview process as I am. My single biggest piece of advice? My recommendation is to prepare five questions and ask three during the interview. Here are some sample questions that showcase you have come prepared and help you learn about the company and interviewer:. If you hear a passionate response that truly aligns with your own values e. Good question, but the interviewer may want to keep their cards close to their chest on this one.

Take a punt at what the challenge might be, based on the research you have done into the company and the competitive landscape. Ask this — and be prepared to have this question re-directed at you. A responsible and very smart open question that covers a lot of ground. The answer to this will tell you a lot. It would be naive to pretend that money is irrelevant when you're job hunting. Talking about earnings can be really uncomfortable, but it's part and parcel of the interview process. Your interviewers will want to know how much you made at the past positions on your CV, especially your most recent role.

This is all part of the salary negotiation process — they want to know how much you'll accept. Unfortunately it can put you in a sticky situation, as it's likely they'll look to offer you something close to your last position — even if it was underpaid.

Questions about the company

There's also the risk they'll back off if they think they can't afford you, not knowing that you're willing to take a pay cut for the right role if that's the case. If you're currently underpaid, say something along the lines of: "I've always felt that salary history is a private matter. If you're making a lot more than the salary range and are willing to take the cut, address it head on after revealing — or being asked about — your current salary.

Explain your reasons for taking the drop to reassure your interviewers that you're serious and won't regret the decision later.

For example, "I'm passionate about working in this industry so a drop in salary is a small sacrifice" or "this role has different responsibilities than my current one and I feel the compensation you're offering is appropriate. Should you choose to disclose, it's important to be honest.

It's easy for them to find out the truth when they call your references, and an early fib won't get you off to a great start. You can't prep an answer for every question, and there are bound to be a few surprises on the big day. The best way to deal with them is to have a good knowledge base to draw from.

Memorise the job description.

Every question will have something to do with the role, and knowing what it involves makes it easier to connect the question back to it. Bring along a printed copy to glance at if you lose your train of thought. Know what they want to hear. The five essential points to get across in an interview should make their way into your answers. You don't have to cover all of them every time, but try to relate each question back to one or two of them and it'll give your statements more focus.

How to Answer Interview Questions That Employers Always Ask

Understand your own motives. Have a good think before the interview about why you really want the job. Maybe it's because you're looking forward to more responsibility, or because the company ethos resonates with you. If they ask, you'll be able to tell them. Read through your CV. Check your CV for any inconsistencies or employment gaps that a recruiter might spot. This way you won't be caught off guard if they ask you about them. Keep calm. Take a deep breath and a moment to think before every answer, and talk in a calm and measured way. There's no rush — slower speech is a sign of confidence and helps the interviewer follow your train of thought.

Break down the question. Long questions are easy to fumble, so break it down into smaller parts. If the question is really confusing, smile and ask the interviewer if they could repeat, clarify or reword it. Be ready to show off. Unexpected questions are a chance to show how you react under pressure. Don't be modest. If you have something really amazing to say, go for it. Likewise, if you don't know the answer, don't be afraid to say so. You can always offer to find out and come back to them with a follow-up email. There's nothing more anticlimactic than ending a good back and forth with a shrug and a "not really", but that's what often happens when interviewers turn the tables.

Have at least five questions to ask in an interview prepped and you'll come across as genuinely interested in the position and engaged in the process. Just like how your CV can't capture your personality, the job description can't cover the day-to-day reality of the job. Now is the perfect time to clarify any points you're not sure about. Pay attention during the interview so you're not asking questions that have already been answered. It's a good idea to bring a pen and paper with you to jot down questions as and when you think of them. People who think that they know it all no longer ask questions — why should they?

Brilliant thinkers never stop asking questions because they know that this is the best way to gain deeper insights. They came expecting a long presentation. The workers at the BBC had many wonderful ideas that they were keen to share. The fact that the new boss took time to question and then listen earned him enormous respect.

Columbo solves his mysteries by asking many questions; as do all the great detectives — in real life as well as fiction. All the great inventors and scientists asked questions. The great philosophers spend their whole lives asking deep questions about the meaning of life, morality, truth and so on. We do not have to be quite so contemplative but we should nonetheless ask the deep questions about the situations we face. It is the best way to get the information we need to make informed decisions and for sales people it is the single most important skill they need to succeed.

If it is obvious that asking questions is such a powerful way of learning why do we stop asking questions? For some people the reason is that they are lazy. They assume they know all the main things they need to know and they do not bother to ask more. They cling to their beliefs and remain certain in their assumptions — yet they often end up looking foolish. Other people are afraid that by asking questions they will look weak, ignorant or unsure.

They like to give the impression that they are decisive and in command of the relevant issues. They fear that asking questions might introduce uncertainty or show them in a poor light. In fact asking questions is a sign of strength and intelligence — not a sign of weakness or uncertainty.


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