Job Interviews Can Be Nerve Wracking but There are Simple Ways to Be Prepared: Learn How to Answer Interview Questions and 10 Commonly Asked Questions You May Encounter (2020)

Job Interviews Can Be Nerve Wracking but There are Simple Ways to Be Prepared: Learn How to Answer Interview Questions and 10 Commonly Asked Questions You May Encounter (2020)

Wouldn't it be amazing if you knew exactly what the hiring manager would ask you in your next job interview? Then follow these 10 interview preparation tips and 10 tips on how to answer interview questions to boost your chances of landing the job.

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How to Prepare for an Interview?

Use the Given Job Description as Guide

The very first step to learning how to answer interview questions starts from preparations. And you need to go through that given job description very well so that you can get to know what exactly the employer wants from you. The qualifications, background and qualities mentioned in the job description should match with your profile so that you can be confident when applying for this job.

Research About the Company and Your Role

This is the very basic need of the preparation to research about the company you may potentially work with. Learn about their ethics and working along with their background and other workplace policies. This gives you a clear persona on how you can approach your preparations and what exactly the job position demands from you.

Work on your Communication and Body Language

If you want to learn how to answer interview questions for a job then you shouldn’t just mug up all the answers you are going to give to your employers. Work on your communication skills and body languages and present yourself in the best way possible. Use various pitches of your tone to depict that you are interested in giving answers and that you are not here just for the money but for the work satisfaction too.

Tips on How to Answer Interview Questions

Practice Makes You Perfect

Wondering how to answer interview questions? Let’s start with some of the very basic tips first. The very first and obvious tip is to practice as much as you can for an interview. If you are frequent at giving interviews then it’s the best thing as it keeps you updated with your knowledge and current job scenarios.

If you are a complete fresher then you can prepare by giving mock interviews or you can practice with the help of your family members too. You can try answering common interview questions which makes it easy for you to frame your answers and work on your tone and communication skills. It gives you an idea of how to respond in a limited time.

Stay Calm

Interviews are quite nerve-breaking and sometimes you may not be able to perform well when you are under tremendous pressure. This is why make sure that you are calm and composed and conduct yourself with utmost dignity when giving an interview.

You can try meditating before the interview to keep yourself calm. Taking deep breaths also helps in keeping your composure. The best way to maintain your calmness is by giving yourself time and space and do not get affected by the things other people say. Even if you won’t be able to crack this interview, there are plenty of other jobs in the market and this is not the end of the world for you.

Remember the Facts Clearly

Usually, the very first question asked in the interviews is “Tell me about yourself”. Remember that this is an open-ended question which also paves way for you to leave a spectacular first impression on the interview panel. This is why you should know your facts very well.

Rather than just ramming it up, you should try to understand everything and be confident about saying it too. This may seem an easy job but can be quite stressful as these are the initial minutes of your interview and the decorum can be quite serious. However, the key is to remember your work history and academics while introducing yourself to the interviewees.

Take Your Time and Do Not Hurry

If you want to know how to answer interview questions confidently then the most important tip we would like to mention is to pause a bit before answering. You are not just supposed to be a good speaker but a good listener too. You need to hear the question asked by the interviewee clearly and then take your time to frame an answer for it.

You can take a deep breath before answering or just take a quick pause to collect all your information and thoughts together. Starting immediately can seem a bit odd and it can confuse yourself too. Make sure that your answers are to the point but expressive.

Focus on Key Points

Personal interviews aren’t too long as there can be many candidates waiting in the queue. This is why giving lengthy answers would not be a smart decision. Also, nobody wants to hear your praises for an hour-long as it can leave a rather rude and self-centred impression on the penal.

You should better frame your answer in key points so that you can cover more things in less amount of time. This also gives you the time to answer more questions than ever and the interviewees can get to know you better than others. The more time you get to spend in that room, the higher is the chance for you to convince those people that you are suitable for the job.

Don't Forget to Mention Your Unique Skills

If you are good at something relevant to your job then you should mention it in your conversation. If you want to leave a lasting impression then you should let those people know why you are a better candidate than others and why this job is just tailor-made for you.

Rather than repeating the same thing and same set of skills, you can add something new about yourself. This will highlight the special skills you have and will leave a significant impression on the interviewees. If you have won some accolades in that skill then you can surely include the certificates too.

Work on Your Speaking Skills

Learn how to answer interview questions by using less but significant words in your conversation. These are also called power words which you should use in your conversation now and then. It leaves a lasting impression on the hiring manager and it will distinguish you from other candidates.

And by speaking skills, we also mean that you should work on your tone and pitch to keep the conversation engaging and exciting. You can use the impression of your hands to explain things as it gives a more meaningful sense to the whole conversation and also depicts that you are giving your 100% into this. This is the area where your body language also plays an important part.

Don't Criticize Your Earlier Job

No matter what, you shouldn’t criticize your earlier job just for getting this one. Remember that criticizing an environment you have worked in and applauding a company you aren’t even a part of, won’t get you anywhere and it will surely backfire on you. Showing yourself superior to others will present you as rude, arrogant and defensive which is not a good thing to get a job.

Display a negative attitude towards anyone is the biggest “No-No” in a job interview. Instead of criticizing, you can simply put together your point of view by stating differences in the work process, ideologies etc. Before saying something negative about anything or anyone, you should remember that you are not perfect too.

Prepare Some Questions to Ask

If you are going to have a detailed personal interview after several rounds then you should better be prepared for it thoroughly. It can go on for even an hour and you should also work on the questions you would want to ask the hiring managers.

It usually happens that interviewees give a chance to the candidates to ask any question they want. This is the time where you should be thoroughly prepared with your set of questions. Some of the questions you can ask are “How much travel is expected in the company per year?”, “How does one move forward in the company?” etc. Please never ask whether you got this job or not.

Give Examples

To learn how to answer interview questions, one must be thorough with their communication and conversation skills. This is why the best way to answer any question would be by giving examples related to your life.

For example, if you are asked about your skills then you can talk about your unique abilities relevant to the job along with the examples and experiences where you have wonderfully used them for the benefit of your previous company. This would surely showcase you in good light and your point of view becomes way more expressive than before.

Some Common Interview Questions and How You Can Answer Them

Tell Me About Yourself

This is going to be the very first question that you will be answering in any given job interview. The most crucial questions out of all, you need to prepare well for it because it sets your first impression in front of the panel. Make sure that the answer is concise and to the point but covers significant aspects of your life in it.

What are Your Biggest Weaknesses?

If you want to know how to answer interview questions then you shouldn’t exaggerate on anything whether it’s your strength or weaknesses. When asked about your weaknesses, you shouldn’t just say “Nothing”. Try to answer realistically about your struggles and ways in which you are trying to work on those weaknesses and struggles.

Where do You See Yourself in Next Five Years?

Another important question is this one which is asked to know about your career goals and ambitions. Make sure that you come clean with it and let them know that you have set realistic goals for your career trajectory soon. Also, this question is asked to know whether the current job position aligns with your career expectations or not.

Why Do You Want This Job?

This is where you need to prepare the most for your job interview. You should have a great answer on this one and it should be genuine too. You should let them know how this position is something that you would love to work on and how much do you want to work with this company. Here, the research is done on the company and the role is going to come handy for you.

What are Your Strengths?

Know how to answer interview questions for freshers by getting to know about this particular question. If you are giving a job interview for the first time then you should be cautious about pondering on your strengths. Pick the qualities which are related to this position and don’t forget to mention how your qualities make you a perfect candidate for this job.

How did You Hear about This Opening?

This question is asked to examine how much the candidate is vigilant about his career and how much passion he/she has for this job. You should tell clearly that where did you get to learn about this job opening whether it’s through a friend, event or a random job board in newspapers or sites. This is your chance to let them know what made you excited about this job.

Why Should We Hire You?

You are lucky if you are asked this question and the answer to it is more like selling yourself to the panel. You need to let them know that how only you have the set of skills desirable for this job and how you can blend well with the team and culture of this company. This is convincing them that you are the perfect match for this job.

Why are You Leaving Your Current Job?

This can be a tough question and framing a diplomatic answer won’t be wrong. Of course, you need to keep the narrative as positive as possible but it should also mention how you want to take on new opportunities in your life. Even if you were fired or let go of current job then you should better come clean about it too.

How Do You Deal with Pressure or Stressful Situations?

If you want to learn how to answer interview questions then you should know how to deal with such kind of questions. Instead of going all out praising yourself, you should better talk about an organized strategy to deal with stressful situations in the office. It would be great to talk about a real-life example to demonstrate how you have dealt with such situations before.

What Do You Consider to be Your Biggest Professional Achievement?

This is your chance to talk about your professional achievements whether it’s about being “employee of the month” or about getting praises from your previous boss. Talk about the situation you were given along with the task and how your actions led to the positive results you achieved, known to be a STAR (Situation, Task, Action and Result) approach.

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Work on Your Answers!

You know that you can do the job; make sure that the interviewer knows that you too can. One way of doing that is by providing well-thought-out answers to the questions they are asking. When you don't know the answer to a particular question, it's perfectly acceptable to pause and just ask, “Let me think about that for a minute” the hirer would appreciate you taking the time to give them some thoughtful answer. Wherever possible, make sure to include precise examples. Taking time to prepare for the interview will eventually make you feel more relaxed and confident in the process.