Dr. Travis Bradbury, co-author of the best selling book, Emotional Intelligence 2.0, has researched the most often asked questions for a new hire, and provided answers. But first, the questions:
- Why are you leaving your current job?
- Tell me about yourself.
- What are your weaknesses?
- What is your desired salary?
- Tell me a time when you …..
These questions take some forethought and planning – maybe even practice in answering. Here are some safe answers.
Why are you leaving your current job. The best answer is to stay positive, even if you’ve been fired. Explain how you’ve learned from past experience, or want to pursue a passion or career goal.
Tell me about yourself. Be clear and concise, focusing on key accomplishments and experiences. The interviewer is looking to see how you will fit into the job and the culture. It will help to think through this answer beforehand and practice.
What are your weaknesses? It’s hard to find a true weakness that doesn’t detract from competence. But pick a minor weakness that can be developed. If you have dealt with it before, explain your solution to fixing it.
What is your desired salary? Deflect the question by saying, “Although I know money is important, I am more interested in the role I might play in the job, and whether there is a culture fit.” If you have travelled a long distance for the interview, in the interest of money and time, it is appropriate to know the salary range for the job. Some research on-line beforehand might help, or a recruiter will know, But talk of salary in the first interview is a no-no.
Tell me about a time when you …… This question tests your thinking skills. Have stories prepared that tell what you did, how you did it, and why you did it – your thought process. These are stories that demonstrate favorable attributes to yourself – and are desirable for the job, if you know more about it at this point.
Author: Adrianne Geiger DuMond, Executive Coaches of Orange County, www.ECofOC.org