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Commonly Asked Interview Questions

  • Amruta Bhaskar
  • Jan 8, 2021
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Too many job seekers stumble through interviews as if the questions asked are coming out of left field. As you prepare for your interview, you may be considering which questions the employer is going to ask you. While there’s no way to know for sure what topics will be covered, there are several types of popular interview questions you can expect to be asked and, therefore, be prepared to discuss.

Every interviewer is different and their exact questions may vary. By preparing answers for these common interview questions, you can develop compelling talking points to make a great impression during your next job interview.

The most basic and always asked question is-  

Tell me about yourself.

Your interviewers will likely start with a question about you and your background to get to know you. Start by giving them an overview of your current position or activities then provide the most important and relevant highlights from your background that make you the most qualified for the role. If you’d like, it is generally acceptable to include some light personal details about things like your pets, hobbies or family. Doing so can help you be more memorable and personable to the interviewer.

Tip: 1. Do not narrate what is already in the CV 

2. Keep it short

3. Focus on the talking about your achievements and learning 

Following this question, you are asked- 

How would you describe yourself?

When interviewers ask you to talk about yourself, they’re looking for information about how your qualities and characteristics align with the skills they believe is required to succeed in the role. If possible, include quantifiable results to demonstrate how you use your best attributes to drive success.

What makes you unique?

Employers often ask this question to identify why you might be more qualified than other candidates they’re interviewing. To answer, focus on why hiring you would benefit the employer. As you don’t know the other applicants, it can be challenging to think about your answer concerning theirs. Addressing why your background makes you a good fit will let employers know why your traits and qualifications make you well prepared.

Once the interviewer has a general idea about you, he/she would like to know more about your personality traits. Hence, the question could be-

What motivates you?

Employers ask this question to gauge your level of self-awareness and ensure your sources of motivation align with the role. To answer, be as specific as possible, provide real-life examples and tie your answer back to the job role. 

What interests you about this role?

Like the previous question, hiring managers often include this question to make sure you understand the role and to allow you to highlight your relevant skills. In addition to thoroughly reading the job description, it can be helpful to compare the role requirements against your skills and experience. Choose a few things you particularly enjoy or excel at and focus on those in your answer.

What are your greatest strengths?

This question gives you an opportunity to talk about your technical and soft skills. To answer, share qualities and personal attributes and then relate them to the role for which you’re interviewing.

What are your greatest weaknesses?

It can feel awkward to discuss your weaknesses in an environment where you’re expected to focus on your accomplishments. However, when answered correctly, sharing your weaknesses can show that you are self-aware and want to continuously get better at the job—traits that are extremely attractive to many employers. Remember to start with the weakness and then discuss the measures you’ve taken to improve. This way, you’re finishing your answer on a positive note.

Tips: 1. Do not brag about the strengths and skills that you cannot justify

2. Always elaborate your strengths and weakness with some quick examples 

After knowing your personality traits, the next set of questions could be about your professionalism. This section includes questions such as-

Where do you see yourself in five years?

Understanding how you imagine your life in the future can help employers understand whether the trajectory of the role and company fits in with your personal development goals. To answer, provide general ideas about the skills you want to develop, the types of roles you would like to be in and the things you would like to have accomplished.

Tip: 1. Never give the impression that you want this job just to gain experience and then wish for something bigger in the near future. 

2. Keep your answers aligned with the current job role to show your interest in the company. 

What is your salary range expectation?

Interviewers ask this question to make sure your expectations are in line with the amount they’ve budgeted for the role. If you give a salary range exceedingly lower or higher than the market value of the position, it gives the impression that you don’t know your worth. Research the typical compensation range for the role and request for the higher side of your range. Be sure to let the hiring manager know if you’re flexible with your rate.

Do you have any questions?

This might be one of the most important questions asked during the interview process because it allows you to explore any subject that hasn’t been addressed and shows the interviewer you’re excited about the role. By this point, you’ll likely have already covered most of the basics about the position and the company so take time to ask the interviewer questions about their own experiences with the company and gain tips on how you can succeed if hired.

Tip: 1. Prepare a list of questions in advance that can help you get familiarize with the job role. 

2. Avoid asking irrelevant questions such as the duration of lunch hours, how often the company organises parties or how soon will you be promoted to the next level. 

Yes, the job search is intimidating, but reviewing interview questions and answers in advance is one way to calm your nerves and boost your confidence. Now that you have a general idea of how to answer these questions, do not forget the key to answer any of the questions is confidence. Practice till you can answer to these questions naturally.

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