The Most Asked Interview Questions And How You Can Ace Them

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interview questions
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In an ideal world, during a job interview, we would know exactly what the employer would ask us, and with that, we’d also know the perfect answers to those questions. Unfortunately, in reality, job interviews develop a lot of anxiety and stress in a person. This is mainly because of the question we often ask ourselves before an interview, “What if I don’t know the answer to their question?” So, to help with this anxiety, here are the most commonly asked interview questions and how you can answer them.

Although it is important to remember that we don’t recommend memorizing the same answer for every interview, so make sure you give yourself enough to practice and change the answers a little in order to cater to the employer’s exact question.

Tell me about yourself

This is a question that we’ve dreaded since childhood. Whether it was on the first day of school, new classes, or a job interview. Although the question is quite simple, it is very crucial to make a good first impression, and a lot of people fail to prepare for it. The best way to answer this is by giving a pitch; something that is concise and compelling. Talk a little bit about your current role (including the scope and perhaps one big accomplishment), then give some background as to how you got there and the experience you have that’s relevant. Finally, segue into why you want—and would be perfect for—this role.

What is your greatest strength?

Here’s an opening to talk about something that makes you great—and a great fit for this role. When you’re answering this question, think quality, not quantity. In other words, don’t rattle off a list of adjectives. Instead, pick one or a few (depending on the question) specific qualities that are relevant to this position and illustrate them with examples. Stories are always more memorable than generalizations. And if there’s something you were hoping to mention because it makes you a great candidate, but you haven’t had a chance yet, this would be the perfect time.

Why do you want to work for this company?

Beware of generic answers! If what you say can apply to a whole slew of other companies, or if your response makes you sound like every other candidate, you’re missing an opportunity to stand out. Do your research and point to something that makes the company unique that really appeals to you; talk about how you’ve watched the company grow and change since you first heard of it; focus on the organization’s opportunities for future growth and how you can contribute to it; or share what’s gotten you excited from your interactions with employees so far. Whichever route you choose, make sure to be specific.

Why should we hire you?

This may seem like one of the most forward and intimidating interview questions out there, but if you’re asked it, you’re in luck: There’s no better setup for you to sell yourself and your skills to the hiring manager. Your job here is to craft an answer that covers three things: that you can not only do the work but also deliver great results; that you’ll really fit in with the team and culture; and that you’d be a better hire than any of the other candidates.

Where do you see yourself in five years?

If asked this question, be honest and specific about your future goals, but consider this: A hiring manager wants to know a) if you’ve set realistic expectations for your career, b) if you have ambition (a.k.a., this interview isn’t the first time you’re considering the question), and c) if the position aligns with your goals and growth. Your best bet is to think realistically about where this position could take you and answer along those lines. And if the position isn’t necessarily a one-way ticket to your aspirations? It’s OK to say that you’re not quite sure what the future holds, but that you see this experience playing an important role in helping you make that decision.

What are your salary expectations?

Prior research is very important for this question. You will have to know what similar roles are paid, and there are a lot of websites online that will help you with that. Reach out to your network and ask around to get a general idea of basic salary expectations in your field. During the interview, you can do one of three things; you can give a salary range, but keep the bottom of your stated range toward the mid-to-high point of what you’re actually hoping for. You can also flip the question around, and ask the employer what their expectations are. Finally, you can even delay answering by saying that you’d like to know more about the role and its responsibilities before discussing pay.

These are a few of the most commonly asked questions during an interview. Remember to be cool, calm, and collected when you answer. It is okay to take your time and give a well-thought answer rather than fumbling or beating around the bush. 

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