Thursday, April 15, 2021

How to ace the 50 most common interview questions

Travis Bradberry

Most people’s biggest job-hunting fear is being put on the spot by oddball interview questions such as these (which are real):

“Describe the color yellow to someone who’s blind.” – Spirit Airlines

“If you were asked to unload a 747 full of jelly beans, what would you do?” – Bose

“Who would win in a fight between Spiderman and Batman?” – Stanford University

Offbeat questions are nearly impossible to prepare for, and they don’t achieve the interviewer’s objective—to test out-of-the-box thinking and the ability to perform under pressure. That’s the bad news.

The good news is that companies are moving away from them. Recent research shows these questions do little more than boost the interviewer’s confidence. Even companies famous for oddball questions are abandoning them. In the words of Laszlo Bock, Google’s former HR chief:

“If you’ve heard that Google likes to pose brain-teaser questions to candidates—like why manhole covers are round—your information is out of date. There’s no evidence that they suggest how people perform on the job.

Glassdoor study of tens of thousands of interviews found the 50 questions you’re most likely to be asked in your next interview:

1. What are your strengths?

2. What are your weaknesses?

3. Why are you interested in working for us?

4. Where do you see yourself in 5 years? 10 years?

5. Why do you want to leave your current company?

See all 50 questions

Though these questions may be less exciting to prepare for than “Spiderman vs. Batman,” they are what you need to be ready for.

Most interviewees are only prepared for about 10 questions, so this list alone can give you a leg up. Study the list carefully and have answers ready—but not robotically rehearsed—so that you can speak comfortably, flexibly, and confidently about each of these topics.

If you want to make a great impression and stand out from the crowd, preparing for these 50 questions is not enough. Follow the 9 strategies below and weave the knowledge they impart into your responses. Then you’ll truly ace your interview.

1. Identify Your “Hook”

Most hiring managers interview a lot of people. So many that they generally have to go back to their notes to remember candidates—the exception being candidates with a strong hook. Sometimes these hooks are how people dress or their personality, but the best hook is a strong story that’s work-related. When you can wow an interviewer with a memorable story that shows what a strong candidate you are, you’ll rise to the top of the list.

3. …And Know What Makes You A Great Fit For It

Know exactly what makes you fit into the position perfectly and speak to it during the interview. What you makes you special? It could be that you’re an idea machine, or a statistical fanatic. Whatever it is, know it and prepare to fit it into your responses.

For example, when an interviewer asks, “What are your strengths?” skip the clichés and go right into qualities about you that are unique to the job. You’ll make it clear that you’re the perfect fit.

6. Practice, Practice, Practice

You, and everyone else interviewing for the job, already know many of the questions you’ll be asked. The difference lies in preparation. Preparing unique and position-specific responses will give you the competitive edge over everyone else. You don’t need to memorize answers, but instead know certain points of reference about yourself that you can apply to different questions.

Make sure to “mock interview” yourself. Video your responses until you’re able to speak comfortably and flexibly—as opposed to rotely regurgitating answers—about your prepared topics. Videoing yourself may feel awkward when you do it, but it will pay off during your interview.

Read all 9 tips for answering the top 50 questions

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tuesday, April 13, 2021

10 questions to ask in a job interview that will really expose a company’s culture

By Karen Eber

You are in the last five minutes of the job interview, and the interviewer asks: What questions do you have?”

Time is limited, so you ask the question you think will be most helpful: “What is the culture like here?”

Don’t do this. There are better questions to understand the culture. 

The interviewer will typically respond by describing the values of the company. Their reply will have some variation of trust, collaboration, transparency, integrity which are the same values that show up in various forms in many companies. These don’t help you understand the day-to-day experience.

Culture is felt through the behaviors that are reinforced or discouraged on a day-to-day basis on teams. If you want to get a sense of the story of the leader and team’s culture, use detailed questions. You will get a much better sense based on the responses, especially if the leader struggles to think of what to say. If you are a manager, prepare to answer detailed questions that illustrate your team’s culture. 

Better questions to ask a hiring manager:

1) Tell me about a time a team member changed your mind?  This lets you know if the leader feels they are the only one who has the answers or if they are open to different opinions. You are going to learn how they prefer to receive information and what they value. 

4) Describe a recent success or win. They should be able to come up with something pretty quickly. If they can’t, that might indicate that they aren’t great about celebrating progress or recognizing people along the way to milestones. They don’t have to describe a huge win. However, they should be able to think of a recent event that demonstrates progress. 

8) Tell me about the last person you recognized. Recognition can be a thoughtful conversation, an email, an award, or even a mention in an all-hands meeting. You want to see if the leader struggles to come up with an example or easily mentions individual and team recognition. Does the leader have the mindset that development includes helping people see the contributions they are making?

See all 10 questions and the complete Fast Company article

 

 

Thursday, April 8, 2021

The 25 questions you should know in a job interview

You already got the interview , it's time to talk about yourself! An opportunity opens up to keep the job and the first question is: are you ready?

Have you ever walked out of an interview thinking you didn't give 100%? Feeling like you failed to convince the recruiter and sell yourself? You are not the only one! The job interview is part of the process when looking for a job, and there are two fundamental tips to master it: Prepare and Practice

Miguel Ángel Rangel, Recruitment and Selection Manager of Deloitte Mexico, recommends that candidates review the information placed on the resume and not put false information , since later the recruiter will notice it.

“Practice a lot, go to a lot of interviews. Sometimes you have to put two or three 'No' together to get a 'Yes'. They will realize that many questions are repeated and they will be able to answer better ”, he commented during his participation in Expo City OCC .

Here's a compilation of the most common interview questions and how you can answer them wisely. So know the 25 questions that the recruiter will surely ask you:

The icebreakers

They seem casual or 'light' but they are focused on getting more information than you think. Find out why.

1. Tell me about yourself. The recruiter doesn't want to know your life story , they are giving you the opportunity to speak openly about your 'professional self'. Avoid sharing personal information , focus on your work profile, your strengths and show enthusiasm.

2. Why are you interested in the position? Take the opportunity to show your enthusiasm for the job.

3. What do you know about our company? Prepare in advance and do your research on the company: mission , history, values , earnings, business units and social networks.

The uncomfortable

They will go deep into your professional life with the intention of detecting red flags. Anticipate your response so you are not caught off guard.

6. Why did you leave your previous job? Why do you want to change jobs? Leave out the negative comments about your past work experience , focus on your desire to grow and how this position surpasses the one you have or had before.

The difficult ones

They provide the recruiter with key information about your professional profile , think carefully before answering.

11. There is a gap in your work experience, what did you do during that time? Highlight productive activities such as: volunteer work, taking a course, finishing your studies.

12. Tell me about a moment in your work life where you made a mistake, how did you solve it? We all make mistakes at work, but there are those who have the ability to intelligently approach their mistake and find a solution. Show that you are that person.

Read all 25 questions and the complete Entrepreneur article

 

 

Tuesday, April 6, 2021

Not asking these 4 questions at the first interview will kill your chances

Samantha Hawrylack

Many people prepare for questions during the interview, but did you know that you should ask questions afterward, too?

It happens at the end of every interview. The interviewer asks, ‘Do you have any questions for me?’ Most people naturally respond ‘no.’ That’s the worst thing you could say, though.

It shows that you aren’t engaged or interested in the job. Unless you’re a superhero and can learn everything you need to know about the job in the 30 – 60 minutes the interview took, you’re bound to have questions.

So what should they be? Here are a few examples.

1) How has the position changed over the years?

Most positions evolve in some ways – some are big, and some are small. Ask about the history of the position, and you’ll find out if more responsibilities have been added or if the position changed direction altogether.

This tells you a few things. One, if there was a recent change in the responsibilities, it could be why the previous person left. Make sure it’s something that fits within what you want.

Two, it could mean the position is one with possibilities. If you plan to grow with the company, knowing that they constantly change the position’s responsibilities could be a good thing.

4) What are the next steps in the interview process?

If you’re interested in the job after you’ve gone through the interview, it’s natural to ask about the next steps. This shows that you’re forward-thinking and want to plan for the next steps.

This takes some of the anxiety out of waiting for the phone to ring or the employer to send you an email asking you back for another interview or offering you the job. 

If you want the job, you have to show that you want it. Don’t let the interview end when the interviewer stops asking questions. This is your opportunity to turn the tables.

Ask any questions you have about the company or about your future with the company. Don’t be afraid to sound too forward or too inquisitive. Employers like to see people go after what they want. It shows that you may do the same thing if they hire you.

Read all 4 questions and the complete theladders article

 

 

Thursday, April 1, 2021

Job Seekers, LinkedIn Will Guarantee Your Next Interview—If You Can Pass A Test

Kristin Stoller

Tired of applying for jobs and never hearing back? Job seekers, rejoice: LinkedIn announced the launch of a new pilot program Tuesday that guarantees candidates interviews with recruiters—if they can pass a test.

Through the new skills-based hiring program, called Skills Path, hiring managers at participating companies, such as Microsoft, BlackRock and Ralph Lauren, will identify the core skills candidates must possess to perform specific roles. Free LinkedIn Learning Courses will be curated around these core skills and offered to job seekers. When applying for jobs at these employers on LinkedIn, candidates will be asked to demonstrate their skills in a multiple-choice LinkedIn Skill Assessment, as well as in a video or written test. Those who pass earn interviews with company recruiters.

“I do think there are barriers for people to get their first shot at something. A lot of jobs will say you need two years of experience or four years of experience,” says Hari Srinivasan, LinkedIn’s vice president of product. “This will let you get your foot in their door and prove some new skills along the way.”

Pilot program participants—including Citrix, Gap Inc., GitHub, Gusto, Prologis, TaskRabbit, Wayfair and LinkedIn—are looking to hire for a variety of positions, among them customer service, sales development, data analyst, product manager, project manager, recruiting coordinator and supply chain coordinator roles.

Wayfair, which plans to use Skills Path to source candidates for recruiter roles, is searching for talent with strong communication and analytical skills, as well as resilience, says Ryan Gilchrist, Wayfair's global head of talent acquisition. He says the online furniture retailer will ask candidates to share their professional experiences, like a time when they failed to achieve a goal and how they handled the situation, or a time when they tried something new and what they learned.

Srinivasan says LinkedIn tested the first iteration of Skills Path last year when, trying to fill a customer service role in its office in Omaha, Nebraska, it removed traditional requirements, such as a bachelor’s degree or one to two years of prior experience, from the job posting. “We were blown away by the results,” he says. “Not only were we getting candidates with a completely different set of experience than we had before, but our hiring efficiency improved.”

 The product announcement is part of LinkedIn’s global skills initiative with Microsoft, which acquired the professional social network in 2016. Last summer, the two companies made a commitment to offering workers access to free educational resources and employers access to pre-qualified candidates, with a goal of helping 250,000 companies make a skills-based hire this year. 

Read the full Forbes article for more information