A job interview is a career-determining factor in one’s life. The convergence of your thoughts and the divergence of your words should make the perfect combination, to please the HR who is interviewing you. Every candidate generally goes through a long application process, including a written test, followed by an interview or a sequence of interviews. It is essential to flaunt your vocabulary as much as it is to showcase your skills. You should certainly work on your language before an interview. Also, you should emphasize building and reenergizing your professional skills and your technical skills. Once you have expertise in your major, you should also be able to answer non-major questions in your interview. So, here is a list of 50 top interview questions to prepare:
50 Top Interview Questions
- Introduce yourself
This is a very underrated question; most don’t prepare well enough. A good way to answer is the present-past-future formula. First, talk about your present position, then you can talk about your past positions, talk about what you worked on in your previous job, talk about a success you achieved there, and then acknowledge your future expectations.
- Walk me through your CV
This is a very popular opener question in interviews. You may answer ‘tell me about yourself’ by talking about your present job, then past experiences, achievements, etc. but while answering ‘walk me through your resume’, you would prefer to tell your career journey chronologically. You should also talk about your projects if mentioned in the resume.
- How did you find out about this job vacancy/opening?
While answering this question, don’t be too rigid. You should mention the source flexibly and tell why you were so excited about it. Tell them about what fascinated you about the job, and what exactly are you excited about working there.
- Why do you want to work at this company?
This is a very commonly asked question and you would never want to sound like just another folk while answering it. This is your chance to stand out. Talk about the company’s history or motto, anything that inspired you to work there. You can also talk about what you heard from the employees so far.
- Why do you want this job?
While answering this question, you shouldn’t be neutral. You should show how passionate you are, about the role you’ll be working. Companies tend to hire people who are passionate and enthusiastic about their work. Also, try to be more specific. For example, if you are applying to an engineer’s post, you can say that you love to use scientific, and analytical methods and solve real-world problems or build something that makes you feel you are contributing to the human world.
- Why should we hire you?
This is a great opportunity for you to market your skills to the interviewer. You have to show that you can not only work efficiently but also are fit for the company’s culture, deliver great results, and are better than the rest of the candidates.
- How can you add value to the company?
This is where the company tests you. They need to know if you are fit to solve the existing issues in the company. Read from the past interview rounds if you are being hired to solve any special problem. Connect your skills and experiences to the problem and tell them how you can tackle the problem.
- What are your greatest strengths?
You should not pick many adjectives while answering this question. Quality is always better than quantity. Try telling stories to showcase those strengths. Stories are more effective than generalizations. You can mention the reasons they should hire you too.
- What are your weaknesses?
Your interviewer is trying to check for any red flags for the company here. You can’t quote you’re a perfectionist here. Instead, try to pick something that you struggle with and talk about how you are trying to improvise.
- What is your greatest professional achievement?
Don’t pick anything that went according to the plan here. Prefer talking about something that didn’t go right, and talking about how you smartly handled the situation and achieved success. This makes the impression of a problem solver.
- Tell me about an argument/grudge you faced at work and how you handled it
Don’t be too rigid while answering this. You may get uncomfortable while answering this but you have to stay calm and honest. Talk about the conflict and tell them how you resolved the issue. Focus more on your solution than the argument.
- Tell me a situation in which you demonstrated your leadership skills
The title doesn’t have to be fancy. Talk about any initiative you took that a leader would do.
- When was a decision at work, made against your choice?
Put it like a challenge you faced and tell them what lesson you learned from that. It’s really important to start and end your response responsibly. You should start by talking about the positive side of the incident and finish by summarizing your experience.
- When did you make a mistake at work?
You should answer this honestly. Talk about what lesson the mistake taught you and what steps you took to prevent it from happening again. Any folk would hire someone who is self-aware and ready to take feedback. You should be able to showcase these qualities in yourself.
- Tell me about your failures
You should choose an incident you can talk about honestly. Talk about how you see that as a learning opportunity. Look ready to take feedback.
- Why aren’t you continuing your current job?
Don’t answer this question negatively. You can gain nothing by negatively framing your current employer. Rather, show that you are seeking new opportunities. If you were fired from your last job, then be honest. It is an acceptable answer.
- Why were you fired?
If you were fired due to mass layoffs, then you should be honest about that. But what if you were fired due to your poor performance? In that case, it is best, to be honest. Frame it as a learning experience for you rather than your shortcoming.
- Why did you take a break from your employment?
You should be prepared to explain the gap in your resume. You may be busy looking after children or parents, or you may be sick or learning something. You should be honest but do not surpass your comfort zone while answering.
- Can you explain why you changed career paths?
You should be able to present yourselves as suitable for the role still. Try to show how your experience can help you work better in your new job. It is often impressive how a seemingly irrelevant experience can help you relevantly in your job.
- What’s your current salary?
It may be illegal to ask this question in some places but if you get asked this, don’t reveal the number. Try to revert this question into telling your salary expectations and you may also give a number if that might work for you.
- Is there something you hate about your job?
Be calm and don’t let your answer turn into a rant about your boss or that coworker. Try to keep the interview positive. Talk about the opportunity that this job offer that you don’t have at your current job.
- What are you looking for in this job?
List out exactly what this company needs. This will have a very positive impact.
- What type of work culture do you like?
Try to answer a similar environment as this company has in its offices. You can also talk about work culture in this question. Try to be flexible though.
- What’s your work style?
They may want to imagine you working if you get selected for the role. Try to keep your answer revolving around the company’s environment, existing teams, and values. You can talk about how you work productively while remote.
- What is your management style?
The best managers are flexible yet firm. And that is what you want to show in your answer. Try to bring up a story about your management history. It will be more impactful.
- How would your boss and your coworkers describe you?
Be honest in this answer. You can talk about your strengths and traits that you didn’t discuss in other answers. Talk about your willingness to pitch in other projects when needed.
- How do you deal with stressful hours at work?
Don’t act smart here. If you have performance issues due to stress, then be honest about it and talk about how you are trying to improvise. If you are good at handling stress, then pitch in a story from the past. Stories are always more impactful than blabbering.
- What do you like outside work?
Interviewers ask this question to get to know you better. They want to know what you would do on your days off. Be honest but make it sound professional. Don’t make it look like you’ll spend your work hours doing something else.
- Are you planning on having children?
Any questions about your personal life are illegal but they still get asked and that too, frequently. You must refrain from answering such questions or anything inappropriate and go back to your current job.
- How do you stay organized?
No one likes to work with someone who is not well organized. Unorganized folks not only create a mess for themselves but also create chaos for other workers. You should mention a specific technique you use to keep things organized. You should also mention the results of using it. Be positive about things.
- How do you list your priorities?
The employer needs to know if you can manage time, exercise judgment, communicate and shift gears when needed. Talk about a situation when you were called at the last minute. Talk about how you evaluated the priorities. Make them believe you can manage priorities.
- What is your passion?
The answer will be the same as the bobby question. This question gets asked when the manager wants to know you better.
- What motivates you?
Talk about the company and its values. Make them believe you are motivated and enthusiastic to work at this company. You should talk about what energized you when you read about this job posting, talk about what excites you about working there.
- What are your pet peeves?
Be honest about it without contradicting the company’s culture and environment. Talk about how you dealt with it in the past. Then explain how and what you’ve done to address it while staying calm and composed.
- How do you like to be managed?
Pick a few bullet points and articulate them with positive framing. It will be great if you can give an example of a great boss from the past.
- Do you think you are successful?
Be sure to say yes! Then you can talk about a professional achievement you’re proud of and link it to the position you are applying for.
- Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
Be sure to say in their company. You can say you see yourself promoted to a senior post in the same company.
- How will you achieve your career goals?
Put it like a plan. Do not mention abandoning the company. Talk about how you want to grow with the company.
- What are your career aspirations?
Talk about progressing in the same company and growing your career.
- What is your dream job?
You should about your dreams, and tell them how this job will bring you closer to them.
- What makes you unique?
Don’t pick any generalizations. Rather talk about a certain quality of yours that can benefit the company. You can use examples to illustrate how you’re the best choice for the company.
- Should I know something about you that’s not on the resume?
Talk about a positive trait or detail. Don’t pressurize the interviewer.
- How will your first 6 months be in this role?
You should talk about your adaptive nature in this answer. Talk about how quicky you can familiarize yourself with the environment of the company.
- What are your salary expectations?
You should answer this question confidently. You should be able to negotiate and justify why you deserve that amount.
- What do you think we could do better or differently?
Start by talking positive things about the company. Once you are done giving your constructive feedback, give insights into your visions and then, tell them what changes you would like to introduce.
- When can you start?
Give a realistic date.
- Are you willing to relocate?
If your answer is yes, then show how eager you are about the chance. If your answer is no, then calmly explain why you can’t move right now.
- Is there anything else you’d like us to know?
If you have missed the opportunity to mention something important, then do it here. Otherwise, you can simply summarize your qualifications.
- Sell me this pen.
They are trying to put you in a high-pressure situation to test you. You should stay calm and understand your customer’s requirements.
- Would you like to ask me something?
You can ask about the company’s new plans or upcoming projects here if you’d like to. This is a good situation to target the company.
you must market yourself properly while answering any question during an interview. You should mention your past experiences, preferably tell stories instead of qualities, and also be calm and composed. All the best.