Almost always, job interviews turn out to be unforgettable experiences; either in a good way or a bad way. Candidates who are well prepared and have done a bit of homework on what interview questions to expect, definitely stand a better chance of cracking the interview, as compared to those who are completely unprepared.
What matters in an interview is how well prepared you are, as well as what you answer and how you answer it. Interview questions can definitely vary from company to company and from individual to individual. Many questions tend to be profile-specific.
We will adopt a generalized approach and not focus on any profile-specific questions as such. However, for good measure, readers are advised to anticipate potential profile-specific questions in addition to the following common interview questions.
Tell Me Something About Yourself
This is often the first question that the interviewer will ask you. Be truthful in your answer but be precise. Do not ramble on for fifteen minutes describing unnecessary details that are irrelevant with respect to the interview.
Include basic details like your academic qualifications, family background, educational and professional project work, hobbies or extra-curricular activities, etc. That is all that the interviewer wants to know. He is not interested in what your favorite color is, or what you have named your dog, etc.
Why Are You Interested in This Position?
Another sure-shot question to which you should be prepared with a convincing yet truthful answer. Interviewers are smart people and it hardly takes them a second or two to realize that you are bluffing. Mention about your interest in the job profile and why you think you are suitable for the position.
Do You Have Any Past Work Experience?
This is a question to which most candidates end up telling long magical fairy tales, most of which have been conjured ten minutes earlier in the reception area.
Remember, do not lie. If you do not have sufficient (or any) work experience, say so truthfully. Show that you are earnest and that you are willing to learn. Most interviewers will appreciate your honesty and it could go in your favor.
Are You Familiar With Our Company and Our Line of Work?
Say yes. But only if it is the truth. If it is otherwise, and you know next to nothing about the company, you have no business attending the job interview in the first place. Doing some basic homework about the company, its area of work, etc., is a must.
Interviewers will not expect you to have memorized the company's balance sheets. All they want to know is whether you know anything about the organization that you have shown an interest in. It is a reflection of your seriousness and your sincerity, so keep this in mind.
Where Do You See Yourself Ten Years From Now?
Answer this question with both, a bit of tactfulness as well as honesty. Even if you do not have long-term plans at that organization, do not blurt that out during the interview. Play it safe and choose your words wisely.
What Are Your Strengths and Weaknesses?
First and foremost, every human being has a weakness. Do not project yourself as being a miracle man having an endless number of strengths and zero weaknesses. Providing examples from your past professional experiences while answering can be beneficial, as it can provide the interviewer with a clearer picture of how you can tackle work-related situations.
In addition, here are a few other most frequently asked questions in an interview :
- How and why would you be suitable for this position?
- What are your salary expectations?
- Why did you leave your last place of work?
- Are you ready to sign a one (or two) year employment contract or bond?
- How do you handle criticism?
- Why have you chosen this particular field of work (in case your previous employment was in a totally different industry)
- Are you a leader or a follower?
- How do you cope with challenges, pressures, and deadlines?
- And finally, why should we hire you? (prepare a good answer in advance for this one)
The above was a list of those questions that you will come across in almost every interview you appear for. Candidates are advised to anticipate all of them well in advance and come up with a suitable, truthful, and a convincing way of answering them.