Nov 18, 2021

Common Interview Questions and How to Answer Them

Have you been prepping to ace an upcoming interview to land that dream role? One of the most important parts of an interview preparation is to be ready to answer the various questions that employers typically ask. Your responses are stronger when you know what to expect out of an interview and knowing what kind of questions to prepare for reduces the amount of pre-interview stress and helps you feel more at ease.

We’re here to give you some great tips on how to answer interview questions, what the most common job interview questions are and how you can ace that online interview.

1.” Tell me about yourself”

Most people misunderstand this question and give a very high-level overview of their life/work experiences. This is your chance to wow the hiring manager and provide details that aren’t there on your resume. If it isn’t apparent immediately why you’re the right fit for the role, this is an opportunity for you to fill that gap quickly.

Keep your answer relevant to the position you’re interviewing for and keep it consistent to match the timelines on your LinkedIn profile and your resume. Try to keep the focus on your experience from the last 18 months of your career.

2.” What interests you about this role?”

This question tests you on how much background research you’ve done about the company and the role. The hiring manager is looking to see how interested you are in the role, and this is an opportunity for you to let that research you did into the company and the role shine! This is also an opportunity for you to assess if the position is right for you and see if it aligns with your career goals.

3. “Why did you leave your last role?”

This is another common question that most interviewers ask. It’s mainly to figure out whether the issues that motivated your transition might be relevant to the current company environment. Your responses to this question will convey a lot about your work ethic, so remember to give an honest response that acknowledges the challenges you faced, but also talk about how you’re overcoming them. For example, if you were laid off due to the pandemic or budget constraints, you can talk about how you took this time to develop other skills.

4. “What are your biggest weaknesses?”

Most candidates may answer this question by taking a theoretical weakness and then transforming it into a strength in disguise. A better approach to follow would be to pick an actual weakness that you’re wanting to improve upon. This is an opportunity to show that you’re willing to assess yourself honestly and then look for ways to improve.

5. “What are your biggest strengths?”

This question is to determine how well suited you are for the role. Let’s give you some interview advice for answering this question. Remember to provide examples instead of merely stating your strengths. For example, instead of just saying that your biggest strength is your negotiation skills, given an example from your prior roles about how you used that strength.

6. “What are your salary expectations?”

Employers can learn a lot from the answer you give to this question, including your seniority level and experience. Make sure that the number you quote aligns with your seniority level and is also consistent with your interview performance. So, remember to reflect on your experience honestly before answering this question.

7. “Tell me about a time when you had a conflict with your co-worker or manager. How did you handle it?”

This is one of those classic behavioral questions that can be nerve wracking! This is also where you use your mad skills to blow them away by demonstrating your professionalism when faced with conflict. You’re bound to have disagreements, but when you give examples of disagreements and how you managed to rise above and learn a lesson or two during it will prove that you’re a motivated employee who respects the work environment.

8. “What are your career goals?”

This interview question is designed to figure out if you’re planning to stick around or move on as soon as you find another better opportunity. Make sure that you keep your answers focused on the job and the company and let the interviewer know that this position aligns with your long-term career goals.

9. “When can you start?”

Some companies need to fill the position asap, and whether that is the case or not, this information is important for them to organize and set expectations internally. Be honest and straightforward in your response, if you need more than 2 weeks, say so and give a specific date if possible so that there’s no confusion down the road.

10. “Do you have any questions for me?”

Most times candidates forget that the interview is also for them, and it’s an opportunity to determine whether this is the right company for them. Prepare some questions in advance and have a pen and paper handy during the interview so you can ask follow-up questions if needed at the end of the interview. The ability to ask intelligent questions show that you are genuinely interested in the position and are serious about the role.

Remember that with most interviews being conducted online these days, you can also practice these questions with friends or family beforehand. Give yourself permission to improvise on some of the answers and write down what come up with, you never know, there may be some gems there you could use!

Write down your responses, but don’t memorize them as they may come across as being too rehearsed. During online interviews, speak naturally like you might talk to someone if you were meeting them face to face. Remember that the interviewers are human too, and it’s ok to ask them to repeat a question or ask to explain a question further to you if you don’t understand it at first. There are no perfect answers to interview questions, but we hope that these interview tips and tricks above will help you land that job your dreams!