Interviews are a daunting thing, but they will appear less scary with some prudent planning. If you have been fairly successful in the past, you will immediately come to an interview with already some valuable experience in the bag. Furthermore, the questions you may be able to answer with ease. The truth is, none of us can ever truly know what we will be met with at an interview. The only thing we can really do is prepare in advance. In all interviews, you will be met with behavioral interview questions. You might ask, what are these questions? Well, if you have ever attended an interview, the likelihood of you having answered them is fairly high.
Behavioral interview questions are designed to highlight your skills and your past work experience. They will often be formatted in hypothetical situations, such as, “what would you do if a co-worker did (insert hypothetical situation)”. Another type of behavioral interview questions would be “give me an example in which you showed leadership skills in your last job”. The aim of these kinds of questions is to give the employer of what kind of worker you are, and whether or not you are likely to be successful within the job applied for. Ultimately, these questions are the most difficult to prepare for. They can catch you off guard and may be the difference between success and failure. Nevertheless, we are here to help you prepare for any question which may come your way.
Behavioral Interview Questions and How To Prepare For Them
The following questions are some examples which often appear in job interviews. They are only estimates, so your actual interview questions will probably differ slightly. Always refer back to your own experience – the answers provided here are purely hypothetical.
In addition, if you are currently in the application process of a new job and you are having difficulty creating a resume or a cover letter, we can also help you on that. We have great step by step guides on writing the perfect resume and cover letter, as well as how to write the perfect resignation letter (if you should need it). As for now, let’s get stuck into the behavioral interview questions. We have provided an exemplary answer to each question.
“How do you handle conflict in the workplace?”
This question can be difficult to answer, particularly because not all of us have experienced personal conflict at work.
If you haven’t:
“Conflict is something which has not often arisen in my past job. Having completed the work and spent most of my time with fellow workers after work, there has rarely been an occasion were conflicted has arisen. Ultimately, I feel that having worked well and focused on interaction with employees outside of work, there has never been a probability of conflict”.
If you have then:
“I once fell out with a fellow worker over a lost document. In hindsight, it was a silly mistake to make and should have been easily forgiven. In this instance, conflict rose, though we managed to talk it out and replace the document with a bit of hard work. Communication is always important when working together”.
“Give me an example in which you handled pressure well in your previous work”
Ironically, this is where you must handle the pressure well. Always remain calm and down worry about taking the time to think. A well thought out response is better than a quick, bad response.
My boss once gave me a double amount of work to finish by the end of the day, which gave me only a few hours to complete. The important thing for me here was to concentrate and to avoid all stress. I decided to work more effectively in order to complete the workload, without jeopardizing the overall quality. However, I finished just a few minutes over time, but my boss knew that I was pressurized for time and that I wasn’t expected to finish on time. I considered it just another day at work, and he was glad to see that I followed the order without becoming flustered.
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“Give me an example of a time when you worked well in a team”
As mentioned, teamwork is always an interview favorite. Here’s the example:
“At a kid’s summer camp, I and the other tutors had to prepare outdoor games. Each of us met each day after camp and decided upon a particular activity to focus on. On the day of the games, we carried out our tasks individually and also helped each other out when needed. If we hadn’t have come together as a team, the outdoor games wouldn’t have been successful”.
“Give me an example of a time you set a goal and reached it”
This question is designed to single out those who are determined, keen workers. Example answer:
“In my last job, I had my heart set on achieving a raise. In order to complete this, I first outlined my path to achieving this goal. It meant further work of course, but with careful planning, hard work and patience, I eventually met my goal. The determination is vital and I feel that achieving my goals has really helped me want to achieve more in my work”.
“Can you tell me when you displayed good leadership skills?”
Leadership and teamwork always pop up in an interview. Example answer:
“I was designated to take control over the school play at the end of the term. On the one hand, there were three other inexperienced teachers to help, and on the other hand, there was the play and the kids. Without wasting time, I designated a task for each teacher and I focused on my own task. Within a few days, the play was assembled and it was a great success”.
“Can you give me an example of a time where you were a model example in the workplace?”
Important: even if you don’t think you’ve ever been a model example, do not say so. By all means, blow your own trumpet here. Example answer:
“At the end of the year before the summer break, things often get sloppy, people get stressed, and ultimately the structure and planning of the school can deteriorate. Exams were on the horizon and I decided to consider the final few weeks just like any other normal weeks in the school year. I also worked closely with the kids and focused solely on what was important within the exams. At such a crucial time, mistakes are to be avoided, and so I put most of my hardest work into the remaining few weeks, rather than slowed my work rate down”.
Ultimately, your own experience can only save you in behavioral interview questions. Just remember to take some time and plan your response. We hope the above will help you!