Try as they might, hiring managers can’t escape many of common interview questions we all know and love:

What is your greatest weakness?

Why do you want this job?

What is your greatest career achievement?

These questions have stood the test of time because they do provide use information to a hiring manager, even though asking them often triggers a rehearsed response. The thinking goes that people have to tell the truth in interviews, so asking about a weakness or the reasons for applying are still good questions to ask.

Therefore, you need to be prepared to answer common interview questions. Yes, your answers will come off a bit rehearsed sounding, but not having a decent answer is even worse because it makes you look unprepared for a question you should have known coming. With this in mind, consider the following common interview questions and how to answer them.

Tell Me About Yourself

While you might not get this question verbatim, a hiring manager will, at some point, ask you to talk about yourself. The trick is figuring out what to talk about and how much detail you should go into with your answer.

Since you’re at a job interview, a good approach to answering this question is talking about why you’re a good fit for the open position by laying out your past, present, and plans for the future. You should try to stick to details of your professional life, but you can include one or two personal details if they are relevant to your career narrative.

Why Do You Want to Work Here?

When responding to this question, the worst thing you can do is give a generic answer about how great the company is or how much you want the open position. Instead, your response should be based on your research on the job, the company, and the industry. For instance, you could talk about positive experiences you’ve had with the company in the past or how the industry that the company is in is very exciting right now.

If you can’t come up with a good specific answer, you may want to rethink why you’re even sitting down for an interview in the first place.

What is Your Greatest Weakness?

Everyone knows this interview question comes up at some point, and it’s important not to fall into the trap of trying to be too clever. Don’t tell your interviewer that your greatest weakness is being a perfectionist or being too eager to please. Also, you don’t want to give an answer that essentially, this qualifies you. For instance, you don’t want to say, “I have a hard time meeting deadlines,” for a deadline-driven job.

A good answer is based in honesty. Talk about a minor weakness that you are working on, such as not being a great public speaker or not being great networking. These responses show you can be candid and self-aware.

We Can Help You with Your Next Job Interview

Of course, there are many more common interview questions out there and we can help you prepare for them. If you’re currently looking for job search and application assistance, please contact Career Concepts today.

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