We all know the standard questions you get asked in an interview, but have you really thought about what your answer is telling the interviewer?
Not all questions are trick questions, but you need to think about what your interviewer will interpret from your answer.
Below are some traditional questions and what the interviewer will be looking for:
‘Can you give an example of when you have made a mistake and what you have done to fix it’ – some people will automatically answer putting the blame onto someone or something else, wanting to highlight that it wasn’t their fault. In fact, what your interviewer is trying to determine is if you can own up to your mistakes and take control of the situation to find a solution, rather than pointing the blame and not taking ownership of your work.
‘What makes you an ideal candidate for the role’ – you know what skills are required based on the job description or advert so firstly they’ll be checking to see if you remember the requirements and done your research for the role. Secondly they’ll be wanting to hear what skills you can bring to the team, so think outside the box and what can truly bring value to the business.
‘Why do you want to leave your current role’ – Such an easy on to slip up on. The way you describe your role or previous company gives them an indication on your attitude towards work. For example, ‘they wanted to me to do a lot of additional tasks that were outside my job description’. They’ll think you’re not flexible and not willing to take on additional tasks, raising a red flag for them. ‘I’ve been with the business for 5 years and learnt a lot but feel it’s time for me to expand me knowledge into a new area and see what I can learn from a new company’. This highlights a)You’ve shown longevity with the company b)you’ve valued your experience there and recognised new skills you’ve picked up c)showing a willingness to learn more and take on new adapt to a new way of working.
‘Give me an example of when you went above and beyond’ – This question gets you to recognise when you have performed a task that perhaps wasn’t part of your job, or wasn’t necessarily required to do, yet you did it anyways. This shows great work ethic often demonstrates when you are able to think outside the box.
And finally, everyone’s favourite…..‘What are your weaknesses’ - by asking your weaknesses they will be looking to see if you are able to recognise areas of improvement and where you need to develop. They will also be looking for you to be honest…just don’t be too honest!