Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Job Interview Questions


Maybe I should shop for a newer version...

It's time to kick my job search into high gear.  I've thought of two accomplishments to add to my resume and I'm writing a first draft of a general cover letter for freight forwarding company's today.  I need to also practice my interview answers.  I learned in school to think of questions you don't want to be asked in a job interview and prepare answers ahead of time. You guys can help me out.  Ask a question you would/have asked a prospective employee.  Ever been asked a really tough question during an interview?  Give it to me. 

Examples:
1)  Why have you not worked in the last 2 years?  What have you done with the time?
2)  Why should I hire you?
3)  What is your greatest strength?
4)  What is an example of one of your weaknesses?

I'll come up with answers and post them in the comments.  Honest, tactful critiques are welcome.   

15 comments:

Kelly said...

How about this: Before we go to the trouble to train you in your position, do you plan to make this a long-term job?

Oilfield Trash said...

I can't remember my last job interview very much as it was 12 years ago. I do remember that the 2 guys who interviewed me switched back and forth between English and Hindi (or whatever their Indian language is called).

Brian Miller said...

be ready for the bahavioral interview as well...tell me about a time you...many companies are using those these days...

John McElveen said...

Truthful answers.....and let it fall where it may!
Your strengths are always YOU!!! YOU will come out sooner or later in a job...so why not sooner?

See if they can handle Jen!!!! YOU- are giving them a great talent...I understand that getting that across is the hard part, as I may be facing that soon myself!

Let me know anything you learn!

Hugs and Prayers,

John

Jen said...

@Kelly: I was with my prevous employer for 13 years, through a merger and several layoffs. I have never been a job hopper. (I don't expect them to ask this question for a temp position. If they do, the answer will be different.)

@Oilfield Trash: Job searches are much different today than 12 years ago.

@Brian Miller: I don't think I've come across that yet. Someone toss one of those out as a question on here.

@John McElveen: Well, maybe I won't tell them about the bosses I hated...but everything I do tell them will be true.

blueviolet said...

Your questions to yourself really are questions you wouldn't want to be asked, but planning answers beforehand is a very, very good thing!

Lorraine said...

First of all your book from Martin Yates, ATTA Girl, one of my favourites tool when I worked I was a career advisor for the Govt and did resumes and televised interview simulation...first thing I will suggest is if you have z specific job in minc, get the Statement of Qualifications, or job description, 'cause you could have the most astonishing accomplishments but if you don't meet their Statement of Qualification, you will be discarde immediately, so anyhoo I'd be happy t helpyou tailor your resume to your job description...oh and what Brian says it's a big one...tell me what you did when....

Lorraine said...

also if you're a job hopper, then your resume should be functional and not chronological that is you should list competencies you have, and then give a short resume of your work place, it's easier that way to combine for example many different jobs, you can simply list for example , clerical and administrative tasks from w(let's say) 2008 - 2009 which will provide experience without listing from month to mnth which is really bad...
AND GET 'THE INTERVIEW KIT' FROM Richard H. Beatty...a real asset

Tom Brucia said...

It's all about what you can do for them. Focus on that, and lots of stuff falls into place. Never give the impression that you need them, but that they need you. (If you're interviewing for the right job, they DO need you!). Always remember feature-benefit: "I did ... and that means I can do this for you!" And to keep your own head on straight (don't say this), remember that you are picking (yes, picking) a place where you want to spend 40+ hours a week of your life. You're interviewing THEM to see if you want to spend your precious life in the environment they're offering you! If you don't leave at least a couple of interviews saying (to yourself), "I hope they don't call back!", you're not being picky enough. Good luck, Jennifer!

Jen said...

@bluebiolet: Even if they don't end up asking the same questions, practicing trains your brain to come up with responses instead of going blank. It's essential.

@Lorraine: I'm thinking of shopping for the newest version. Things change quickly. I'm not a job hopper - I was with my previous employer for 13 years - but I might change to a functional resume because of my 2 years unemployment.

@Tom Brucia: I like that attitude.

Heather said...

When my BIL started as a temp they asked him.. Why was he going through a temp agency? Was he looking for a job that might lead to a permanent one or just something to fill his time?

LadyCat said...

A question I found difficult was "Why do you want to leave your current position". You don't want to be negative, but sometimes that is why you are wanting to leave.
I just tried to talk about the positive reasons for wanting the new job, but it was a difficult one for me.
You are doing great in spending so much time in preparation. Very wise!

Just telling it like it is said...

Yeah let me know...

Tom Brucia said...

Research the company and the position you're applying for -- in depth.... I was once asked a series of questions and gave cogent detailed answers (re: problems they were having and how I thought they could be addressed). I later learned the interviewer said, 'It was like he was reading my memos.' (I got the job.) A boss wants someone who will fix problems before they ever get to his/her desk!

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