10 Most Common Interview Questions

a picture of a young woman being interviewed by two interviewers Interviews can be a very nerve wracking experience. But thankfully, there are some questions which do come up every now and again. And so to help you familiarise and get you more mentally prepared, I share the 10 most commonly asked interview questions and how you can answer them.

1. Why Do You Want To Work Here?

Most interviews start with this question or place it towards the beginning of the interview session. This question helps the interviewer to judge whether the applicant has applied for a particular reason or if they only applied for the position because there is an opening. If it is the latter, then the interviewer will not be impressed. It is really important that you have a strong reason behind why you have applied for a position. The best way to find a reason is to look through the company's website and find something that inspires you. It could be anything. You might be inspired by the company's innovation or product, or you might be inspired by the company's mission or work ethic. Whatever the reason, it should really resonate with both you and the company. And it also shows you researched the company too.

2. Why Should We Hire You?

The whole idea of knowing how to sell yourself really comes into play with this question. It is best to summarise your experience, skills and any notable personal qualities about yourself as concisely as possible. “With my two years of experience of working as a care worker, I have the confidence of creating a healthy and safe environment for both myself and for the people that I care for. In addition, I also have the natural ability to build rapport and strong relations with my patients. This will help you gain a strong reputation as being one of best care providers in the region."

3. What Are Your Weaknesses?

This is arguably one of the most popular interview questions. And it is also the hardest one to answer too. Interviewers are not looking to ridicule you whatsoever but they want to know if you're self-aware of your own weaknesses. And they also want to know if you can use your own strengths to overcome them. With this question though, it is best to leave out any personal qualities and concentrate on your professional traits. “At the moment, I am looking to become an effective communicator so I can get my point across much easier. I recently attended a course on assertiveness, and this has helped me a lot in my professional development.” 

4. What Are Your Goals?

Interviewers ask this question to see if your goals and ambitions match theirs. In other words, they want to see if your going to be with the company for the long run. So when it comes to describing your goals, it is best to keep them short term and immediate. “My immediate goal is to seek work in a target-driven company. My long-term goal will depend on the direction of the company in the foreseeable future. Ideally, I'd like to be in a position of responsibility.” 

5. When Were You Most Satisfied In Your Job?

This question helps the interviewer get a better understanding of what motivates you so that they know what your preferences are. It is best to answer this question by giving an example from your last job or project that excited you. And you must explain why you felt motivated in doing this task. “I enjoyed my last job because I worked directly with customers and helped them to solve their problems. This was a really important part of the job for me because it gave me a lot of fulfilment.” 

6. Tell Me About Yourself

Like the first question on this list, this question is usually asked first or at the beginning. This is where you give a concise summary of who you are and where you're from and what your current situation is. For your current situation, briefly go over your work experience and what your immediate goals are. In most interviews, some interviewers may want to ask you more questions about yourself, so be prepared to answer them.

7. How Do You Handle Stress and Pressure?

Interviewers want to know if you can remain calm under pressure and stressful situations. It is best to provide an example of a stressful situation and explain your process of how you handled the scenario. “In my last job, I encountered an unexpected deadline due to an external audit visit which we came aware of on short notice. I had to prepare a report for close of play on receiving this notice. Thanks to my calm nature, I was able to break down the report into small manageable tasks. This helped me feel less overwhelmed and allowed me to give my full concentration to the task at hand."

8. Describe A Difficult Work Situation With A Colleague And How Did You Overcome It

In the working world, you're bound to encounter a difficult colleague in the work place. And management also expect this as well. The reason interviewers do ask this question is because they want to know if you're able to handle the situation in an appropriate manner and use the right channels.

9. Why Are You Looking To Leave Your Current Job?

For this question, employers want to hear that you are willing to better yourself. Avoid saying anything negative about your current employer because this will look very unprofessional. “Even though I do like what I am doing, I feel that I can do more for an organisation. The next step in my current employer is rather limiting or not readily available.”

10. Do You Have Any Questions For Me?

Whatever you do, do not pass this opportunity. Doing so will only show a lack of interest for the role that you have applied for. So make sure you ask any questions that come to mind during the interview. Or even better, think of some questions that you would like to ask during your interview preparation. Thanks for reading. Have I missed any questions out? Please let us know in the comment section below. Featured image: Pexels
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