how to answer the most common job interview questions
Some interview questions come up so reliably that you’d be missing a huge opportunity if you don’t bother to prepare for them — like “tell me about yourself,” “what interests you about this job,” and many more. There’s real benefit in thinking through your answers beforehand so that you won’t forget key details that you want to include, the substance of your answers will be more organized, and you’ll sound more polished.
Here are six interview questions that are so common you’d be foolish not to prepare for them.
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A reader writes: I’ve been job-seeking unsuccessfully since December 2020, most likely due to my lack of real work experience. I went to graduate school straight after my undergrad and had several internships but no full-time work experience. While I’ve made it to final round interviews several times, I’ve never been able to close the […]
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10 questions you should ask your interviewer
The way some job candidates handle the portion of the interview where it’s their turn to ask questions has always surprised me. A lot of people don’t have many questions at all — which is ill-advised when you’re considering spending 40+ hours a week at the job and when it is likely to have a huge impact on your day-to-day quality of life. And other people use their questions not as a way to suss out information they actually want, but as a way to try to impress their interviewer with their insight and savvy. That’s no good either; not only is it often pretty transparent, but it also means forfeiting your opportunity to find out things you really need to know in order to decide if a job is right for you.
To be fair, a lot of people worry about what questions are okay to ask. They’re concerned about seeming demanding or nitpicky or that their interviewer will draw unflattering conclusions from the questions they ask. It can be hard to elicit the information you really want to learn (like “what are you really like as a manager?” and “am I going to go home crying every day?”) while still being reasonably tactful.
And other people are unclear on the purpose of the opportunity to ask questions. Rather than using the time to suss out the information they truly want about the job, the manager, and the company, they instead try to use it as a chance to further impress their interviewer and pitch themselves for the job. That ends up leaving them without the info they need to decide if the job is right for them or not. (It also tends to be pretty transparent, and will annoy interviewers who don’t appreciate having their time wasted that way.)
So, what should you ask when it’s your turn to question your interviewer? Here are 10 really strong questions that will get you useful insights into whether the job is right for you.