Common (Standard) Interview Questions and Answers
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Q. Tell me about yourself.
A. This is the most common interview question and can sometimes be the
hardest. Since it is a broad and general question the worst thing you
can do is give a broad and general answer.
To make the most of this question you should use it as a “springboard”
to topics that you want to discuss. This question allows you to decide
what parts of your career experiences you want to share with your
Q. What are your major strengths?
A. When you answer this question you should answer it in terms of “what
are the top two or three skills I bring to this job?” Thus, your
strengths that you are willing to discuss will usually change from
interview to interview depending on the job and the organization you are
Q. What are your weaknesses?
A. Many people view this question as a way for an employer to find out
your shortcomings as an employee. This is not the case. The real reason
why this question is asked during the interview process is to determine
your level of awareness of your shortcomings.
When answering this question it is important for you to avoid weaknesses
that may hinder your job performance or will disclose personal issues.
You should choose a weakness before an interview. You should also be
able to tell the interviewer steps that you took to overcome the
Q. What prompted your decision to apply for this position?
A. When an interviewer asks this question they are trying to seek out a
number of things. The interviewer may be trying to find out what
motivates you, the level to which you desire the job, how much you know
about the job, etc.
If this is a position that you really desire this is a very easy
question to answer. Your goal in answering this question should be to
link your interest and enthusiasm to the skills and knowledge that are
most relevant to the position.
Q. Where do you see yourself 5 years from now?
A. Though you may not know where you see yourself 5 minutes from now it
is important for you to be able to answer this question without
hesitation. When an employer asks you this question they are trying to
get a better grasp on your level of dependability, focus, and
Your answer to this question should be to focus on initially completing
the challenge at hand. After that you can change focus a bit and discuss
your long term career goals. Your answer to this question should not
include personal or family goals.
Q. What have you gained from your work/school experiences?
A. When answering this question you should not simply focus on or read
directly from your resume. Rather, pick one or two work experiences or
situations you were involved in and be able to discuss in detail: you
duties, your activities, successes, lessons learned.
Q. What difficulties have you faced on the job?
A. In this question it is important to discuss only difficulties that
you have faced where the final outcome has been successful. When
utilizing examples you should try to take a negative situation and have
it end with a positive solution.