Answering Interview Questions, Tell Me About Yourself, What Are Your Strengths

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Answering Interview Questions

Tell Me About Yourself?

The purpose of this question is to know how well the candidate expresses himself. Many a time, over enthusiastic candidates tells a long story about their education, family background, and personal achievements etc. rather than just limiting themselves to their professional abilities/accomplishments. Be brief and concise and restrict your answer to work related abilities and objectives and significant academic achievements. Do not give answers pertaining to your family unless asked for.

What Are Your Strengths?

Answer this question in a way that your traits are matched to the roles and responsibilities being offered to you. Every individual is born with some inner strength. One has to be aware of one՚s strengths and use them effectively in professional situations, to their benefit. Write down your top three strong attributes and map them to the position being offered. Avoid generic answers like ‘I am a strong team player’ or ‘I am hard working’ . Instead, demonstrate your strengths by exemplifying, for example ‘I was leading my college team and one of the team members fell sick, just when the project was at a critical stage. I put in extra efforts and made up for the work that was lagging behind’ .

What is Your Weakness?

When you are asked questions about your weakness, try to give a positive answer. Mention skills that you have improved on. Do not discuss personality and character flaws, instead discuss how you can improve or have improved in a certain aspect. For example, you may say that, ‘As a student I used to postpone things and I learnt the hard way that things have to be completed in a given time, delays are to be avoided so that issues don՚t add up’ . Do not give answers like ‘I am too hardworking’ or ‘I go out of my way always’ that would give an impression to the interviewer that you assume too many things about yourself.

Why Should I Hire You?

This question assesses your motivation and confidence whilst hiring for a job. To answer this question, read the job description first and mention your skills that are relevant to the job. Generic answers like ‘I am great at problem solving’ or ‘I am a great team member’ are to be avoided. Use your past examples to demonstrate the advantage of your skills. Do talk about your goals and how the job that is being offered to you brings you closer to the goal. This would show that because your goals will be met through the job, you would give your very best to the job at hand. This would not only benefit you but also benefit the organization.

Why Do You Want to Work for Us? Or Why Are You Interested in this Position?

This question is to assess what a candidate knows about the company and the job being offered. Take time and research the company thoroughly. Tell the interviewer why the company looks appealing to you. Talk about its achievements and milestones. Let them know that you are enthusiastic to work for their organization. While you may emphasize why you are suited to work for the organization, let them also know how the position offered to you would be justified by your eagerness to contribute to the organization.

Where Do You See Yourself in 5 Years?

The employer who recruits you wants to know how long you will continue in the organization. When an organization recruits a new employee, it invests sufficient resources for the purpose. The objective is not to let the resources go waste by means of early attrition. This question also seeks to know your career goals. If your career goals are in line with the organizational expectations, then you are judged as the right candidate for the job.

How Do You Handle Stress and Pressure?

This is a behavioral interview question. Exemplify the past experiences in which you have handled stressful situations. Do keep in mind that you give examples of professional situations only. The ability to work under pressure may also be tested by means of stress interview, which involved rapid-fire questions thrown at the candidate. The candidate should not father, but try and answer such questions with as much composure as possible.

Would You Lie for the Company?

This question is to judge if the employee can be loyal at the cost of his honesty. You may answer this question stating that: ‘It is very important for me to be loyal to my company. However, if my lying harms any person or any organization, I would never do it. Character is more important than anything else’ .

What Kind of Person Would You Refuse to Work With?

This again is a behavioral attitude question. The employer is judging your ability or willingness to adjust with people of different personalities. Do not mention that you will ‘refuse to work with certain people’ . Instead, give a positive answer like ‘Even if the person is tough to get along, I will make sure that I adjust and work along with him/her’ .

What Kind of Salary Do You Need?

This question thinking that they have passed the interview and so this question has been asked to them excites many candidates. This is not exactly true. An employer wants to know if you want to work only for money. Hence, answers like ‘Oh, I expect ₹ < some amount >’ will not be appropriate. Instead, you may say ‘Since this is going to be my first job, my priority is to learn the work and the culture of the company. Since your company is very well known, I have no doubt that I will be compensated on par with the leading companies’ . This kind of answer would satisfy the interviewer.

Do You Have Any Questions?

Interview is a mutual discussion. You can wait until the employer has finished asking all his questions. You may then ask questions regarding the role and responsibilities being offered to you. Thus, you can ascertain whether the job at hand is desirable and whether you are appropriate suited for the job. However, do not ask inappropriate questions that have trivial or no significance to the interview. Do not ask questions from which you expect negative answers only. This may make the interviewer feel that you are not interested in the job being offered.

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