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20 Impressive Answers To Any Tough Interview Questions

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20 Impressive Answers To Any Tough Interview Questions

Tough interview questions shouldn’t keep you from getting the job. The resume got you in, now all you have to do is rehearse and prepare for the interview. Brush up on the company’s business through a little internet research. Interviewers will be impressed that you took the time and initiative to get to know more about the company on your own. Use the following questions and answers to rehearse before the big day.

1. Tell Me About Yourself

Keep your answer short and to the point. Highlight career accomplishment and relate these accomplishments to what you can do for the company. Memorize and provide a brief synopsis of your resume. Be sure to tailor your responses to the job description. Describe how you are the best candidate to fulfill the company’s needs.

2. What Is Your Long Range Objective?

Provide examples of what you see yourself doing within the company. Tailor your answers to the job at hand and focus on how your objectives fit with the companies’ long term goals. Review the objectives of the job description as a guide to how you should answer this question, as well.

3.  Are You A Team Player?

Don’t choke on this question and simply nod or say yes. Provide examples of successful team interaction. Specifically talk about how being on a team was beneficial to you and ultimately the company. Read up on the company beforehand to get a sense of the internal culture of the company. Offer ideas as to how a team can come together and do what is best for the company.

4. Have You Ever Had A Conflict With A Boss? How Did You Resolve The Problem?

This question is very much geared to how you negotiate positively with people. Focus on how the problem was resolved, rather than the conflict itself. Emphasize your ability to understand both sides of the conflict. Talk about how you maintained a professional demeanor and did not allow the conflict to get personal. Finally, share how both parties resolved the difficulty.

5. What Is Your Greatest Weakness?

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Of all the tough question, this one by far is the most difficult. Talk about the weakness, whatever it may be, impatience, disorganization, or poor planning. However, end on a positive. Tell the interviewer that you recognize your own weakness, but are working to correct the problem. For example, you may be disorganized yet you are making an effort to organize.

6. Why Did You Leave Your Last Job?

Explain to the interviewer that the company you left was not the best possible fit for you. You decided that you could and have done better elsewhere. Refrain from saying anything negative about your former company. Perhaps the last company did not have opportunities for advancement as this new company does.

7. How Would Others Describe You?

This is a great way to introduce your communication skills. For example, you can emphasize that not only do you listen but that you engage in active listening. Tell the interviewer about how friends and colleagues have come to think of you as a problem solver.

8. Why Should I Hire You?

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    Now is the time to let the interviewer know that you are the best fit for the job. Let him or her know that you are the problem-solver the company has been looking for. This is where the research into the company will be a big help. You will be able to tell exactly how and why you are a good fit for the company.

    9. What Relevant Experience Do You Have?

    This is where the job description will really come into play at the interview. Highlight all relevant experience and be sure to include volunteer work as well. It helps to make a side-by-side list relating your job skills next to the ones that are in the job description.

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    10. How Do You Plan To Add Value To This Organization?

    Describe the value that only you can bring to the role. Your relevant experience and acquired job skills both come into play here. This is your chance to let the interviewer know how you best fit into the job and the organization as a whole.

    11. Why Do You Want To Work For This Company?

    This is where your research into the company before the interview is useful. Know the company’s mission statement and tell the interviewer that you have similar goals in mind. Check out the company’s website, so you can really stand out above the competition when answering this question.

    12. Why Should I Hire You?

    Provide real-world examples of how your work ethic aligns with the company mission and culture. This is your chance to prove you are the best candidate for the job. Again, use the job description to align your experience and skills exactly to the company’s needs.

    13. What Are Some Problems In The Workplace You Have Overcome?

    Provide concrete examples of the means and ways you have in mediating and your ability to problem solve.Explain how you took the initiative of the problem at hand and were able to come up with a solution. Emphasize your ability to ‘think outside of the box’ and overcame the problem.

    14. What Interests You About This Job?

    Simply plug your skills in alongside the job description. You now have the opportunity to now accentuate your skills and accomplishments with the job you are seeking. Show the interviewer exactly how your skills and accomplishments are exactly what the company is seeking and has found in your abilities.

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    15. Is There A Type Of Work Environment You Prefer?

    Tell the interviewer that you are entirely flexible in answer to this question. Say that you work well both independently and in a team environment. Let the interviewer know that you are able to adjust and work as the company requires.

    16. What Are You Passionate About?

    In this case you may relate something personal about yourself. For example, you could sure that you volunteer to help people who are in need. In other words, you could share that you are people-oriented and that your passion lies in giving your time to others.

    17. How Much Do You Expect To Get Paid?

    This point really does take some study before the interview ever takes place. Look up the company’s websites to find comparable salaries to the job you want to win. That way when this question comes up you will have a median range in mind when asked.

    18. How Do You Handle Pressure?

    Let the interviewer know that you are aware of both good stress and bad stress. Good stress can be exemplified through working in a challenging environment or meeting deadlines. As for bad stress, an interviewee could emphasize how exercise helps keep a balance between good and bad stress.

    19. Describe Your Work Pace

    Answer by telling the interviewer that you work to accomplish goals and deadlines at a steady pace. That you are cognizant about deadlines and habitually meet deadlines on time. Discuss how well you are motivated to get the job done is a timely fashion.

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    20. Do You Have Any Questions For Me?

    Keep in mind a particular list of what you want to ask the interviewer. Ask about the work environment. Another suitable question is to ask what happened to the person who left the job.  Was the former employee promoted, did they quit, or were fired?  You may want to inquire as to how long has the position been vacant or if this is a new position.

     

    Featured photo credit: bpsusf via flickr.com

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    Last Updated on August 25, 2021

    Why Personal Branding Is Important to Your Career

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    Why Personal Branding Is Important to Your Career

    As a recruiter, I have met and interviewed hundreds of candidates who have no idea who they are.

    Without a personal brand, candidates struggle to answer the question: “tell me about yourself—who are you?” They have no idea about who they are, what their strengths are, and how they can add value to the company. They present their CV’s believing that their CV is the key to their career success. In some ways, your CV still has its use. However, in today’s job market, you need more than a CV to stand out in a crowd.

    According to Celinne Da Costa:[1]

    “Personal brand is essentially your golden ticket to networking with the right people, getting hired for a dream job, or building an influential business.” She believes that “a strong personal brand allows you to stand out in an oversaturated marketplace by exposing desired audiences to your vision, skillset, and personality in a way that is strategically aligned with your career goals.”

    A personal brand opens up your world to so many more career opportunities that you would never have been exposed to with just your CV.

    What Is Your Personal Brand?

    “Personal branding is how you distinctively market your uniqueness.” —Bernard Kelvin Clive

    Today, the job market is very competitive and tough. Having a great CV will only let you go so far because everyone has a CV, but no one else has your distinct personal brand! It is your personal brand that differentiates you from everyone else and that is what people buy—you.

    Your personal brand is your mark on the world. It is how people you interact with and the world see you. It is your legacy—it is more important than a business brand because your personal brand lasts forever.

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    I have coached people who have very successful careers, and they come to me because they have suddenly found that they are not getting the opportunities or having the conversations that would them to their next role. They are having what I call a “career meltdown,” all because they have no personal brand.

    A personal brand helps you become conscious of your differences and your uniqueness. It allows you to position yourself in a way that makes you stand out from the pack, especially among other potential job applicants.

    Don’t get me wrong, having a great CV and a great LinkedIn profile is important. However, there are a few steps that you have to take to have a CV and LinkedIn profile that is aligned to who you are, the value you offer to the market, and the personal guarantee that you deliver results.

    Building your personal brand is about strategically, creatively, and professionally presenting what makes you, you. Knowing who you are and the value you bring to the table enables you to be more informed, agile, and adaptable to the changing dynamic world of work. This is how you can avoid having a series of career meltdowns.

    Your Personal Brand Is Essential for Your Career Success

    In her article, Why Personal Branding Is More Important Than Ever, Caroline Castrillon outlines key reasons why a personal brand is essential for career success.

    According to Castrillon,[2]

    “One reason is that it is more popular for recruiters to use social media during the interview process. According to a 2018 CareerBuilder survey, 70% of employers use social media to screen candidates during the hiring process, and 43% of employers use social media to check on current employees.”

    The first thing I do as a recruiter when I want to check out a candidate or coaching client is to look them up on LinkedIn or other social media platforms, such as Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. Your digital footprint is the window that highlights to the world who you are. When you have no control over how you want to be seen, you are making a big mistake because you are leaving it up to someone else to make a judgment for you as to who you are.

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    As Jeff Bezos, the founder of Amazon, once said, “Your brand is what people say about you when you are not in the room.”

    In her book, Becoming, Michelle Obama writes about the importance of having a personal brand and her journey to defining her personal brand. She wrote that:

    “if you don’t get out there and define yourself, you’ll be quickly and inaccurately defined by others.”

    When you have a personal brand, you are in control. You know exactly what people will say about you when you leave the room.

    The magic of a personal brand is that gives you control over how you want to be seen in the world. Your confidence and self-belief enable you to leverage opportunities and make informed decisions about your career and your future. You no longer experience the frustrations of a career meltdown or being at a crossroads not knowing what to do next with your career or your life. With a personal brand, you have focus, clarity, and a strategy to move forward toward future success.

    Creating your personal brand does not happen overnight. It takes a lot of work and self-reflection. You will be expected to step outside of your comfort zone not once, but many times.

    The good news is that the more time you spend outside of your comfort zone, the more you will like being there. Being outside of your comfort zone is where you can test the viability of and fine-tune your personal brand.

    5 Key Steps to Creating Your Personal Brand

    These five steps will help you create a personal brand that will deliver you the results you desire with your career and in life.

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    1. Set Your Personal Goals

    What is it that you want to do in the next five years? What will your future self be doing in the next five to ten years? What is important to you? If you can answer these questions, then you are on the right path. If not, then you have to start thinking about them.

    2. Create Your Unique Value Proposition

    Create your unique value proposition by asking yourself these four questions:

    1. What are your personality features? What benefit do you offer people?
    2. Who are you and why do people enjoy working with you?
    3. What do you do and what do people want you to do for them? How do you solve their problems?
    4. What makes you different from others like you?

    The answers to these questions will give you the information you need to create your professional story, which is the key step to creating your personal brand.

    3. Write Your Professional Story

    Knowing who you are, what you want, and the unique value you offer is essential to you creating your professional story. People remember stories. Your personal story incorporates your value proposition and tells people who you are and what makes you unique. This is what people will remember about you.

    4. Determine Which Platforms Will Support Your Personal Brand

    Decide which social media accounts and online platforms will best represent your brand and allow you to share your voice. In a professional capacity, having a LinkedIn profile and a CV that reflects your brand is key to your positioning in relation to role opportunities. People will be connecting with you because they will like the story you are telling.

    5. Become Recognized for Sharing Your Knowledge and Expertise

    A great way for you to promote yourself is by sharing knowledge and helping others. This is where you prove you know your stuff and you gain exposure for doing so. You can do this through social media, writing, commenting, video, joining professional groups, networking, etc. Find your own style and uniqueness and use it to attract clients, the opportunities, or the jobs you desire.

    The importance of having a personal brand is not going to go away. In fact, it is the only way where you can stand out and be unique in a complex changing world of work. If you don’t have a personal brand, someone will do it for you. If you let this happen, you have no control and you may not like the story they create.

    Standing out from others takes time and investment. Most people cannot make the change by themselves, and this is where engaging a personal brand coach is a viable option to consider.

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    As a personal brand coach, working with my clients to create their personal brand is my passion. I love the fact that we can work together to create a personal story that defines exactly what people will say when you leave the room.

    Other People’s Stories

    Listening to other people’s stories is a great way to learn. In his article, 7 TED Talks About Personal Branding, Rafael Dos Santos presents the best Ted Talks where speakers share their stories about the “why,” “what,” and “how” of personal branding.((GuidedPR: 7 TED Talks About Personal Branding))

    Take some time out to listen to these speakers sharing their stories and thoughts about personal branding. You will definitely learn so much about how you can start your journey of defining yourself and taking control of your professional and personal life.

    Your personal brand, without a doubt, is your secret weapon to your career success. As Michelle Obama said,

    “your story is what you have, what you will always have. It is something to own.”

    So, go own your story. Go on the journey to create your personal brand that defines who you are, highlights your uniqueness, and the value you offer to the world.

    Featured photo credit: Austin Distel via unsplash.com

    Reference

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