Most Asked Questions at Job Interviews

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Getting past the initial screening phase to the interview is a good sign. It means you meet the basic requirements of the job on paper. When you finally go on your job interview you’re likely to hear a few common questions from the hiring manager. Be prepared for these questions as well as additional inquiries regarding your knowledge and past work experience.

Tell Me About Yourself

One of the first questions you’re likely to hear when you sit down for an interview is the universal, “Can you please tell me a bit about yourself?” It is an icebreaker question that leads into more specific questions about your resume. The interviewer asks this not only to learn about you but also to learn about your personality and to see how you express yourself. Here you can talk about your education, background, experience at the last job and goals for the future.

Why Did You Leave the Last Job?

One common question you’ll most likely hear at a job interview is the question of why you’re leaving your current job or why you have already left your last job. The hiring manager asks this question to see if the reasoning is legitimate. For instance, explaining that you’re leaving the job for personal reasons or to seek a higher salary is better received by the interviewer than leaving just because you didn’t like the boss.

What Are Your Strengths and Weaknesses?

The interviewer will also commonly quiz you on your strengths and weaknesses as well. He wants to know your strengths and skills to see if you’d excel at the position. The interviewer asks for weaknesses for the same reason — to determine if you’re a fit and to see how you manage to overcome these shortcomings. A general discussion of strengths and weaknesses can also help bring out additional topics of specific relevance to the position.

Can You Explain How to…?

For a position that requires technical knowledge, the interviewer commonly asks a series of specific “how to” questions to gauge whether you’re familiar with the requirements of the position. For instance, for a computer programming position you might be quizzed on specific programming functions. If you're seeking a position as a loan officer you may have to answer financial questions related to the position.