Examples of straightforward interview questions include:
- Tell me about yourself.
- What interested you in this position?
- What is one thing in the job description that you will excel at?
- What is one thing in the job description that will be a challenge for you?
Behavioral questions tend to be focused on the past (e.g., what did you do versus what would you do). A few examples are below:
- Describe a time when you made a mistake and how you handled it.
- Tell us about a time when you worked on a team, the role you played, and what the outcome was.
- Give an example of a time you experienced a conflict and how you resolved it.
Situational questions tend to be focused on the future (e.g., what would you do versus what did you do). See a few examples below:
- How would you handle a disgruntled customer?
- What would you do if you were given a project but were unsure what to do with it?
- What would you do if you had a meeting in five minutes, but someone was on the phone inquiring about office services, customers are asking questions at the desk, and you still have to print materials for the meeting?
Personality and Skill Assessments
Some job opportunities may require you to take a skills assessment before moving forward in the interview process. Although there are no real tips to ace assessments, it is best to always be honest.
How to Formulate an Answer for Any Interview Question
“Tell me a little bit about yourself.”
- Keep it professional—no personal information.
- Include information pertaining to your educational background, experience, involvement, strengths, and end with your current goal(s).
The STAR method is a quick way to use examples when answering interview questions. Follow the STAR method below:
- Define the Situation you will use as your example.
- Outline the Task that was involved in the example.
- Detail the Action you chose to take.
- Describe the Result of this example.
How to Identify Unacceptable Interview Questions
Sometimes employers may ask questions in a way that makes them unacceptable to answer. It can be difficult to determine whether you should or should not answer a specific question. IUPUI Human Resources Administration
has a list of interview question guidelines
and explains what is acceptable versus what is not acceptable to ask candidates. An example is below:
| Are you able to perform the required job functions without reasonable accommodations?
|Do you have a physical or mental disability?
Suggestions on How to Answer Unacceptable Interview Questions
- Identify what the question is really trying to ask
- Direct your answer back to the job description and the required functions
For example, a response to the above unacceptable question might be: "I do not have any physical or mental disabilities that would inhibit the successful performance of the job functions required for this position."
Need assistance planning for your next interview? Make an appointment
and check the reason code: Part-Time Job Interview Prep.