Last month we tackled some tough interview questions and how to answer them. This time we are back with more questions that are likely to make you sweat . . . unless you are prepared!
Your interviewer already knows you are suitably qualified, that’s why you are sitting in the hot seat! What they are really asking is ‘will you be a good fit for our company?’. This is your chance for the big sell. They probably have your C.V. in front of them but now is your opportunity to push home all those positive points you printed on to the page. Emphasise your strengths, key skills, and your previous experience. Highlight the personal and professional attributes that will make you a great asset to the company. Let your enthusiasm shine. They will remember what you said and the way you said it long after the words on your resume fade away.
For many of us, this can be a little uncomfortable. It sounds like you are being asked to boast about yourself doesn’t it? Actually, it’s not how great YOU are that they want to hear, it’s about the great thing that you DID. Again, preparation is key. Before the interview think back over recent events at work and recall times when you have shone – when colleagues, your boss or your customers have praised you and recognised your achievements. This is also the time to mention any qualifications or successfully completed training courses you have attained recently.
“Not much” is not an answer that is going to lead to a job offer. There are no excuses for not doing your homework on this one. Research into a company is so easy these days, with Google, Linked In, the company website and press releases all available at your fingertips. Focus on 3 or 4 key or prominent facts about the company and the position you are interviewing for and learn them. Better to remember a few and be correct than trying to learn a dozen and getting most of them wrong.
Let’s face it, few of us go to work purely for the love of the job – the pay is one of the driving forces behind the search for a job. So why are we afraid to put a price on our time, effort, skills and experience? If you already work in the sector you should have a good idea of what a fair salary should be. Those new to the world of employment, or looking to make a career change, should undertake some prior research.
Don’t sell yourself short but don’t price yourself out of the market. You don’t want to be on the shortlist simply because you are cheap and you don’t want to miss out on the shortlist because your expectations are unreasonable. If you don’t feel comfortable putting a definitive figure on the table so to speak, offer a range that you expect the salary to be in – “between £x and £y”.
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