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20 Impressive Answers To Any Tough Interview Questions

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 December 4, 2020

    13 Critical Things to Consider Before Switching Careers

    13 Critical Things to Consider Before Switching Careers

    Do you have a path not taken? Maybe you had big career dreams when you were younger, but somehow they didn’t materialize.

    Maybe you took your first job, thinking it would be a stepping stone to a better job. It seemed like a good idea at the time, you recall, except the better job never came along. Or perhaps, saddled with student loans, you took a job that helped you pay them off. You paid them all right, but now you feel stuck in a career you don’t really like.

    The average person spends 90,000 hours in their lifetime at work[1]. That’s too much time to be doing anything you don’t love!

    Is it time to think about switching careers? Here are 13 things to do when making the big leap.

    Diagnose Your Current Work Situation

    Before switching careers, it’s important to figure out why you’re currently unhappy so you don’t step into another situation that isn’t right for you. Start with these considerations before making any big decisions.

    1. What Are You Passionate About?

    It’s somewhat shocking, but research shows 87 percent of workers have no passion for their jobs[2]. Passion can be measured many ways, and one person’s passion is another’s poison. Still, if you believe in your company’s core mission, it really helps.

    How can you find your passion? You may have to switch careers. Try to arrange informational interviews with as many people as you can who work in the field of your dreams to be certain that making the switch will make you feel more engaged with your work.

    Your aim: To be as happy walking into the office on Monday morning as you are leaving the premises on Friday afternoon. When you love your job, no day feels too daunting. When you love your job, it doesn’t feel like work.

    Need a little help finding your passion? This article can help: How to Find Your Passion and Live a Fulfilling Life

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    2. Can You Keep up With Technology?

    Are you keeping up with it? And is your current company supporting your efforts? The speed of technology is so fast that many companies today can’t keep up. This may result in anxiety among the company’s leadership. The sense of anxiety can filter down and impact the workers. Morale is low, and everyone fears for their job.

    When switching careers, try to find a company that will allow you to learn as you grow. It also helps to consider yourself a lifelong learner. These days, we all have to be.

    Invest the Time to Dream Big

    If you’re now sure of why you want to make a move, it’s time to dig into your dreams to find exactly which direction to go.

    3. What Does Your Vision Look Like?

    Athletes visualize their signature moves. Politicians fantasize about winning. Your task is to visualize your dream. Where do want to be working five years from now? Ten years from now? Fifteen years from now? Figure out what your titles will be at each point along your new trajectory. Will you be living in your current geographical area or will you have moved?

    Ask yourself the hard questions as well. Can you afford to switch careers right now? Will you be making more money or less than you currently do? How will you support those who depend on you?

    Once you have your vision clearly committed to paper, run your vision by a few of the people who know you best. Do your friends encourage you to pursue your vision? (If they don’t, consider finding more supportive friends.)

    4. Do You Know What to Expect?

    It’s harder to switch careers than to find a new job in your current field. You may have to accomplish the move in several discreet steps. Will making a lateral move at your current company take you one step closer to your ultimate goal?

    In addition to researching your dream field online, try to surround yourself with some friends who have recently switched careers. After you have formed a rough idea of the steps you will need to take to get from where you are now to your new career, consider committing it to an action plan. The more concrete you can make your Plan, the better.

    Should you be attending more networking events? Do you need to burnish your online profile? Commit to action steps, and then put those steps into your daily calendar. You’re going to do this!

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    If, for instance, you’ve decided to move from marriage counseling to financial planning — you’ve seen enough divorces resulting from money matters to know there’s a better way to help people — your listening skills and discretion will be an asset. Your research will reveal whether you need specialized training or licensing to qualify. If so, go online and add your name to every list you can find to learn more information. Start calculating how to pay for your courses. A bonus you’ll get with continuing ed courses: you’ll gain access to a strong peer network.

    Take Action

    Time to make the move. Start considering how you will approach these steps to get where you want to go.

    5. Who Will Support You?

    What if, early in your career, you made a job switch that you regret? Now is the time to call your ex-boss and try to get together for lunch or a cup of coffee. Let them know you are thinking of making a U-turn back to your former field.

    What if your sister disapproves of every idea you have? Either resolve to avoid her for the next 12 months or call her right now — and tell her you’re switching careers and you don’t care whether she approves! Keep all naysayers at a distance during this transition time.

    6. What Can You Do Each Day to Accomplish Your Dream?

    Switching careers can be quite time-consuming, but if you break down the task into small chunks, tracking your progress as you go, you’ll have a better chance of success. Whether you spend a few hours today googling your dream career, or refurbish your LinkedIn profile to emphasize the skills you have that will help you land this new job — just keep at it.

    Career-switcher’s hint: Working on your new dream for one hour each day is more productive than spending 12 hours working at it on a Sunday. The more committed you are to achieving your goal, the faster it will happen.

    7. Does Your Resume Highlight the Correct Skills?

    First, research the qualifications of the position you hope to land. Then, look for ways to mesh them with your own skills. While some careers require specific degrees and credentials, there are many positions you can transition into that require no additional education. Sometimes, what you bring from your own background is perfect.

    Take inventory of all the hard and soft job skills you possess. For the skills you don’t have, put a plan in place to acquire them!

    Highlight your qualifications in a way that makes a well-argued case for your compatibility with the organization and the position you’re after. Keep in mind that all employers look for candidates with skills that show leadership and the ability to solve problems, persevere through challenges, and get results.

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    Refine the skills on your resume to incorporate these resume “musts.” Make sure, though, to only claim skills you truly possess. Unless you’re proficient in a software program or are fluent in a second language, leave any mention of them off.

    Switching Careers Shortcuts

    When switching careers, there are ways to make it easier. Look into these questions to see what can work for you in your search.

    8. Do You Have Any Contacts in Your Desired Career?

    People are remarkably forthcoming on their LinkedIn profiles. This helps when you search out employees in your dream field or a targeted company. But before you take full advantage of online networking, first make sure that your profile content is fresh.

    Curate all social media accounts to reflect your new direction. Social media can increase your networking opportunities exponentially. Comment on the posts of your targeted contacts and pose pertinent questions to get on their radar.

    9. Are You Networking Enough?

    While it may be considered old-school to tap your organically grown (offline) network, it still comes with the best odds of success. Reach out to your friends and acquaintances with industry connections who can help you make a connection.

    Make a point of meeting face-to-face with anyone who can offer you a lead or provide a reference. You never know what kind of opportunity will unfold from these offline connections.

    Learn more about networking here: How to Network So You’ll Get Way Ahead in Your Professional Life

    10. How Can You Become an Expert in Your New Field?

    Start building the skills you’ll need to make your career switch. LinkedIn and many other providers offer online courses in everything from accounting software to mastering Excel. For extra credit, see if you can find classes that award online badges for completing each course. Don’t be shy about adding these certificates to your online profile.

    Read trade magazines and study up on industry trends. Write and post articles on timely topics. Develop an online presence in the field of your dreams.

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    11. Are You Willing to Put Yourself out There?

    Nonprofit organizations often look for volunteers to help them with their outreach, social media, fundraising, and more. Once you’ve mastered the needed skills, be sure to have the head of the organization or a board member write a glowing recommendation for you.

    Depending on your desired career, it may be possible to take on a contract assignment at a company where you learn on the job. A freelance gig allows you to polish your skills, make connections, and prove you’re serious about this career change.

    For example, if your dream is to transform your knack for attracting followers through pithy postings into a career as a social media manager, don’t be afraid to pitch your services. Most companies need someone to manage their online presence and may welcome your fresh new strategy.

    Switching Careers Results

    Now that you’ve taken the steps to switch careers, bask in the success you’ve found in doing so.

    12. How Can You Reward Yourself?

    Set whatever benchmarks you need to achieve as you embark on switching careers, and think of them as cause for mini-celebrations. Find frugal ways to reward yourself.

    However, hold out for the big, pop-the-champagne celebration until you land your dream job.

    13. Has the Risk Paid Off?

    People who prefer to play it safe throughout their careers often fall short of their potential. Research shows the primary reason executives derail is an inability to change[3]. It takes a large measure of courage to pursue a new path. And when you succeed, it fuels your confidence.

    You have an air of self-assurance about you and a can-do spirit that stands out. And best of all, you’ll have moved from a dead-end or lackluster job to one into which you can pour your passion and realize the feeling of self-fulfillment.

    The Bottom Line

    Don’t be afraid to switch your career path once you’ve outgrown the one you’re in. Set out to intentionally pursue career satisfaction and you’ll reap great rewards by realizing the joys of job satisfaction.

    More Tips on Switching Careers

    Featured photo credit: Kevin Bhagat via unsplash.com

    Reference

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