Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Top 10 interview questions and answers

1. Top 10 interview questions and answers 2017

2. Top 14 tips to prepare job interviews

Step 1: Give a brief introduction about yourself:

For example: My name is Peter. I graduated from XYZ University with bachelor degree in Sales. After 5 years working as a Sales Manager, I have well experienced in training, mentoring and motivating other sales personnel to achieve the goals of the Company.

Step 2: Give a brief summary of your experience in your latest positions:

Give a summary of 2-3 latest companies that you have worked for and companies that have helped you succeed with your new jobs.

For example: recently, I have worked for ABC Company as Sales Manager for North-East Region. With my skills from training courses, I developed many sales campaigns which contributed much to the development of new customers and maintenance of current customer base. After 6 months, my sales force and I did regain the company’s market and promote the sales revenue up by 37%.

Step 3: Connect your ability to the employer’s requirements:

Never assume that the employer will by himself be able to connect all of your abilities to the job requirements.

Step 4: Make a concerning question:

With a concerning question, it will help you gain “control” of the interview. You may reduce the stress of the interview with such questions.
For example: I would like to know the strong points of your company’s current Sales force.

Some tips in answering:

·         Records/references: when giving information about yourself, remember to provide records/references as well;
·         Don’t make up the information: your information will be kept as records for a long time when you are employed. Also, the employer has many ways to checking whether your information provided are correct or not. Therefore, give the most faithful information as possible;
·         Practice: to answer well an interview question, you can practice with your friends or do it by yourself in a private room. Be sure that your answer is brief and within 3 minutes;
·         Keep information brief and relevant: Try making your answers more and more concise; Try to give much information in as short time as possible;
·         Eliminate irrelevant and unnecessary information.


Question 2: What are your biggest strengths?

This question will help polishing your qualification to the requirements of the employer.


1. Steps to answer this question:

a) Identify which you are good at:

• Knowledge;
• Experience;
• Skills;
• Abilities.

b) Prepare a list of your strong points:

c) Review the recruitment requirements:

You should review carefully the recruitment requirements to know for sure which requirements are the most important to the employer.

d) Make a list of your strong points in your resume/cover letter:
List and describe your strong points in your resume and cover letter orderly.

You should make descriptions to those points in your resume.

e) Prepare persuasive answers to the question of the employer about strong points:

You do not only state your strong points to the employer but must also provide evidence for them by references or records attached with your application form.


2. Strong points that the employer may concern about:

     Great communication skills;
     Ability to adapt to the change in company culture;
     Ability to solve problems flexibility;
     Ability to learn from failure;
     Group work spirit.

Other useful source: List of job strengths .

Question 3: Why did you leave your last job?

1. Some sample answers to the interview question: “Why are you leaving your last job?”

     There is no opportunity to promote in my current job and I’m ready to face a new challenge;
     I have worked there for 04 years with much experience and skills. I want to be promoted but the Company do not offer me that opportunity;
     The company has cut down with its focus on the business line my job is responsible for;
     My family transferred to another region, or, my current workplace is too far away from my home;
     My old company often paid late and had inadequate compensation policy.

2. You should avoid answers that:

     Speak ill of your old boss, colleague, etc.;
     They punished me many times for…
     I did not complete my job.

Reference source related: Leaving job reasons.

Question 4: What are your career goals?

1. The reasons of this question:

This question will test your ability and ambition to develop yourself as well as the ability to plan for the future.

2. Levels of career goals:

     You are not sure about your goals, then answer: I’m rather busy with my duties and goals of the Company; as a result, I haven’t focused much on my long-term personal goals.
     You have goals not or very little relating to the current job: For example, you are applying for a sales manager, but your career goal is to become the head of marketing department in the next 5 years.
     Current job oriented career goals: For example, you are working as a sales manager, you goal is to become the area sales manager in the next 2 years and in the next 5 years, you will be the regional sales manager.

3. “Career goals” tips:

a) You can state some of your goals as following:

     Study for an MBA certificate or other degrees…
     Become specialist in the sector…
     Get to the title of XYZ something.

Note that long-term goals must be set for the next 3-5 years.

b) When you have identified your goals, you need to answer the following questions:

     Are those goals suitable to the job you are currently applying for?
     Are those goals helpful to your current job?
     Are those goals helpful to the development of your current job in the next 3-5 years?

c) How to achieve those goals?

     Identify what you have to do to achieve your goals?
     In the next 6 months, 1 year, 2 years, what will you do?

Reference source related: Career goals list.

Question 5: Why do you want to work here?

This is a very simple question, but in order to give a suitable answer to the recruitment position, you must know how to answer. You need to know about the company you are willing to work for and read their job description. When you are asked this question, tell them that working for XXX will be a challenging and beneficial experience to you.

1. Some ways of answering:

Normally, a candidate may answer in such ways as following:

     I don’t know;
     Because I like the job and like other employees in the company; or
     The job is quite a challenge to you which will help improve your development.

2. Some sample answers:

     I have heard that XXX is currently the company with the best training & development policy. This is really a good chance for me to develop my career.
     XXX is the number one in ABC industry which I have long been studying and aiming for. I hope with my ability and the opportunity to work here, I will be able to make a breakthrough in ABC area.
     This is a new industry in XYZ region. I am researching on this industry and aiming to be a leading specialist in the sector. Therefore, I would like to have an opportunity to develop my career as expected as this opportunity.

Question 6: What is your greatest weakness?

1. Ways to answer:

a) First way: Turning your strong point into weak point.

For example: I am a perfectionist and therefore, I rarely believe in anyone who can work as well as me. As a result, I am afraid to delegate important tasks to others. This approach has a weak side as that if you are not clever, you will cause the employer to believe that you are cheating him.

b) Second way: Solving your weakness absolutely.

A better approach is that you state one point which was once your weakness, but you have done well to resolve it.

For example: I tended to be a perfectionist, therefore I didn’t like to delegate to others. But I have found out that in order to develop the organization, everyone in the organization must be experienced with many tasks and this is very good for an efficient team work.

2. Steps to answer:

     You need to show it through your attitude and voice: It is really your weakness. And, you may also state some situations how much that weakness has caused you difficulties.
     Give your solution to resolve that weakness, partly or wholly.
     Solutions to a weakness may be training, mentoring, etc

3. Interview Tips for “weakness” question:

     This is a common question in any interview, so don’t try to avoid answering it.
     Never mentioning a weakness that relates to a crucial requirement of the job.
     Don’t try to make up a weakness.
     Don’t say you have no weakness. No one is perfect, therefore, you shouldn’t say you have no weakness.

Question 7: What do co-workers say about you?


1. Sample 1.

Be prepared with a quote or two from co-workers. Either a specific statement or a paraphrase will work. Jill Clark, a co-worker at Smith Company, always said I was the hardest workers she had ever known. It is as powerful as Jill having said it at the interview herself.

2. Sample 2

My co-workers always admit that I am good team player by providing suitable advices at the right time. They also add that I have a balance between good stress and bad stress.

3. Sample 3

I am a highly respected professional amoungst my co-workers and client group, a team player, humourous – can turn the worst seniorio into a fun learning session, dedicated, organized and efficient and trusted individual.

4. Sample 4

Both my friends and coworkers would say that I’m reliable, because of the fact that I’m the one that everyone calls. Whenever any of my friends have a problem I’m the friend they know will give them an honest answer, or be there to help them with whatever needs to be done.

Question 8: Are you applying for other jobs?

1. Tips for this questions

     Be honest but do not spend a lot of time in this area.
     Keep the focus on this job and what you can do for this organization.
     Let you concentration be on this very organization or job position and try to elaborate on how you plans are going to affect the organization.
     Make sure you did not deviate from this question as people always digress to other irrelevant stuffs.
     Focus on the organization, anything outside the company a distraction.

2. Sample answers

Of course, I am. I am looking for the best place to apply my abilities, and so far this place looks excellent.


Question 9: What kind of salary are you looking for?

Tips for this question:

A loaded question. A nasty little game that you will probably lose if you answer first. So, do not answer it. Instead, say something like, That’s a tough question. Can you tell me the range for this position? In most cases, the interviewer, taken off guard, will tell you. If not, say that it can depend on the details of the job.

Answer samples

     Sir, salary is very secondary. What matters is you are providing me (given i clear this interview) with the kind of work I have always wanted to do and the kind of work environment too.
     I am looking for the kind of salary that I can not only live on, but enjoy life with as well. I don’t want to be the person who works just to pay bills and have hardly anything left for myself. I don’t know about anyone else, but when I look for a job, it has to meet my needs both mentally and money-wise or I don’t take the job.

Question 10: Do you have any questions for me?

Answer tips

Always have some questions prepared. Questions prepared where you will be an asset to the organization are good. How soon will I be able to be productive? What type of projects will I be able to assist on?

The best approach is to ask an open-ended question that will generate further conversation and allow an exchange of ideas to take place. Open-ended questions generally begin with “who”, “why”, “how”, or “when”.

Avoid questions that can be answered with a straightforward “yes” or “no”. Closed-ended questions typically start with:


List of interview questions

1. What does the company value the most, and how can my work further these values?

2. What kinds of processes are in place to help me work collaboratively?

3. What can I do to homogenize and build team spirit?

4. Do team members usually eat lunch together, or do they eat at their desks?

5. What’s the most important thing I can do to help within the first 90 days of my employment?

6. Do you have any concerns about my ability to perform this job?

7. When top performers leave the company, why do they leave and where do they usually go?

8. What’s the organization and structure of my team? Am I going to be a mentor or will I be mentored?

9. In your opinion, what are my strongest assets and possible weaknesses? Do you have any concerns regarding my suitability that I need to clear up in order to be the top candidate?

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