Preparing for a job interview can be quite overwhelming, especially when you try to come up with some answers that will differentiate you from the other candidates. Because of how common these questions are, it might sometimes be hard to come up with an answer that doesn’t sound cut out from the book. This guide will help you answer five of the most common interview questions and make you ready for the big day.
1. Can you tell me a little about yourself?
This is probably going to be the first question you will be asked. When talking about yourself, try not to give out too much personal information. Speak about your personal interests outside of work, such as hobbies or some smart but fun facts. A formula that never fails is the past-present-future type of answer. Share a little bit about what got you where you are now, what are your current interests and a future goal that may involve the job you are interviewing for.
2. Why should we hire you?
This is where you present your work abilities and what differentiates you from the other candidates. Be prepared to show a little less modesty and make your answer sound confident and concise. You should be able to tell the interviewer what is it that you can bring to the table for the employer to benefit from. In other words, what makes you stand out. Need a guide to answering, what makes you unique? Review the job qualifications and requirements and start constructing your answer from there.
3. Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
Interviewers ask this question to determine if you are going to stick around for more than a few years. Sometimes they ask what your future goals are, which is kind of the same thing. Try to give an answer that is more focused on the job and the company you are interviewing with. Explain why the position you are aiming for aligns with your future goals and how you and the company can help each other grow.
A note to the interviewers though: avoid this question if you can, there are other ways to check on how the candidate envisions his/her career growth.
4. Why are you leaving your current job?
When answering this question, try to answer it in a positive way, even if the circumstances were not the best. Stick with the facts and talk more about the future. Avoid attacking your past employer or colleagues, as the new employer might be reluctant to bring on someone who might be throwing shade at the company in the future. If possible, focus your answer on the new opportunities this future job can bring you. The bottom line: it’s best to be honest in positive way.
5. What are your salary expectations?
Although it may seem like a simple question, where you can be honest and ask for what you think you deserve, the answer might weigh more than you expect for the end result. If you undermine yourself, you might be getting a much lower offer than they intended, but if you overprice yourself, it can get you out of the competition. The best way to answer this is by researching salaries for similar positions in other companies in the area. There are quite a few sites around like Glassdoor that offer salary range across different job descriptions. Based on the research, talk about a salary range, but show flexibility.