Most of the questions below are designed to see how good you are at thinking on your feet so you cannot truly prepare for them. Just relax and say something sensible.
1. What can you tell me about yourself?
Talk about yourself in summary and avoid rambling. Your detailed work history can be found on your CV, after all, so focus on elements that you want to highlight rather than going through everything.
It is okay to discuss your personality and what ambitions you have. Ideally, you will give the interviewer a positive insight into how you would fit in as an employee.
2. Can you list your strengths?
An exhaustive list of adjectives, such as ‘capable’, ‘hard-working’, or ‘diligent’, won’t really portray you well because anyone can make such claims about themselves. Instead, think about three things that you do well and give concrete examples.
If you are a strong organizer, for example, then talk about a project that you coordinated or a new procedure that you formulated. If you are good with numbers, then talk about your skills with spreadsheets or financial matters.
3. Why should I consider hiring you?
If you are highly qualified for the job you are applying for, then you should point this out, but don’t forget that other people being interviewed may match or exceed your suitability. In such cases, focus on what else you can bring to the job, perhaps with your soft skill set, like being able to integrate well with existing members of the team, for instance.
Don’t give up on an interview if you´re not fully qualified for the job. Appeal to the interviewer’s desire to hire someone with drive. If you are not the finished article, then point out how keen you are to learn and be mentored.
4. Where do you see yourself five years from now?
This is your chance to talk about your wider ambitions and goals. It is okay to say you’d like to progress on from the position on offer in most cases. Bosses want to hire people with determination so don’t be shy about sounding ambitious or hungry for success. Ideally, try to contextualize your ambitions within the organisation that you are applying to join because this tends to go down better.
5. Why do you want to work here?
This is your chance to show that you have researched the company you are applying to work with. Avoid saying anything negative about your current employer which makes it seem you are simply after any job at all.
6. What is your salary expectation?
This is one of the most troublesome questions for many interviewees. For some people, however, it causes no bother at all. It will depend on your personality as to how you feel talking about salary expectations. That said, there are some tips to help you deal with the question.
Firstly, it is okay to talk about pay in terms of ranges and not to be specific about a particular number. It is also okay to include other benefits, like healthcare, pensions, and time off within the context of salary. Make sure you have looked at other, similar jobs being advertised in other organizations so that you have an idea of the pay rate in the market.
7. Is there anything that you would like to ask me?
Always have at least one question prepared in advance. This is your chance to drill down into an area of the business that might not have been covered in the interview. Alternatively, you may simply like to ask for feedback on how you have done in the interview.
A good tip is to pick up on something that has been mentioned in passing by the interviewer about the job. Ask him or her to expand on this. Not only does it make you appear interested, but it shows that you have been listening attentively to what has been said. It should leave the interviewer with a good final impression of you.