Master These Must-Know Interview Answers

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The best way to ace a job interview is to rehearse your responses to common interview questions until they sound natural, well-thought-out and conversational. Take a look at a trifecta of must-know answers to interview questions. Your unique responses can make you stand out from a crowd and demonstrate you're the ideal candidate for the job.

1. Why Are You Leaving Your Current Job?

This is a tough job interview question to answer because you want to be diplomatic regarding your current supervisor and colleagues, but you also need to convince the interviewer that you want to step up and take on new challenges. Rather than talk about your past, discuss the value that you bring to the company.

Perhaps you have had your eye on this company for a long time and this position offered the perfect opportunity for you to join this employer. Maybe you can talk about a shared value that you have with the company, such as providing great customer service or a commitment to a healthy work-life balance.

You should also discuss the opportunities the employer provides. The company might allow you to expand your experience and knowledge base while bringing your own passions and personal brand to the role. If this is the primary reason why you're leaving your current position, let the employer know.

2. Tell Me About Yourself

This simple statement is vague and all-encompassing. However, it allows you to talk about whatever you want. Rehearse a response that highlights your achievements and communicates your value to the company. Consider talking about your current position and job duties, and then discuss how those carry over into the role. Display your enthusiasm and interest for the job while describing how you plan to make an impact.

For example, highlight how your current role as a sales manager challenges your preconceived notions of running a dedicated team thanks to the various thinkers and problem-solvers that you supervise. Then, segue that current role into your passion for becoming a sales executive overseeing a larger team for a product or service that you feel passionate about. Provide quantitative information in the form of hard numbers during your job interview, such as increasing sales by a specific percentage over a certain amount of time.

3. Do You Have Any Questions for Me?

Your response to this question helps you to discover more about the company culture. Try asking some of these questions:

• What is the biggest pain point facing your company today?
• What do you enjoy most about working here?
• Does this company encourage risk-taking and out-of-the-box thinking?
• What opportunities do you see for me over the next year?

Use this time to get clarity on any issues that were previously unclear. Feel free to ask about the next steps if this is the final stage of the job interview. The hiring manager's answers to your questions can also help you decide whether or not you truly want to work for the company.

These must-know answers to common job interview questions help you create an open, honest discussion with the hiring manager. What questions do you think you should prepare for prior to a job interview?


Photo courtesy of Stuart Miles at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

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  • Nancy Anderson
    Nancy Anderson

    Thanks for your comments. @Stefan Hearst thanks for your comment. It's true that it's harder to find a position when you are older but it's not impossible. Do the best that you can to make your resume "younger". Once you get in the door for the interview, you can certainly sell yourself. People are getting hired despite the AGE Syndrome. @William Van Loon, the jobs are there and they are there for the more mature workers. We have tons of articles dealing with ageism and job hunting. Just click on the Interests link and then Career Advice and you will see many articles that address questions that you might have. All the best.

  • WILLIAM VAN LOON
    WILLIAM VAN LOON

    These questions are fine if you are a younger candidate which means you are probably between the ages of 30 and 50. Fifty might be pushing it, though. You might want to consider writing an article about people over 50 looking for work and how to address certain questions.

  • Stefan Hearst
    Stefan Hearst

    Only 58 but many men and women at Job Fairs always jokingly say they will never get hired due to inheriting a condition known as AGE Syndrome.

  • Gary Grant
    Gary Grant

    True

  • john l.
    john l.

    Nothing happens at the age of 68 no matter how rehearsal goes

  • Stephen Blavier
    Stephen Blavier

    Thank you John

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