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Top 20 Job Interview Questions – Part 1

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This post contains the most common behavioral interview questions to asses the top 2 job required competencies common across all jobs. The following list has been compiled based on our experience as a job interview coach having hired for many different jobs, in a variety of industries, at all levels.

We have not only provided you the questions that will likely be asked by Human Resources professionals but we have also included key “search for” points. These key points are the ones that your interviewer or panel will be looking for in your answer.

When it comes to job interviews, our motto is that preparation is the key to success. We are confident that if you take the time to jot down points for each of the question, you will have a successful interview. Just think how far ahead of the competition you will be with this book.

Below are the list of common job required competencies. Review each competency against the job you are interviewing for and choose the ones “core” to the job. Ensure you understand the dimension that is being assessed. Answer each behavioral interview question in point form, in the blank space provided. Ensure you speak to the key “search for” points.  Believe me, we have seen many candidates come up short when we assess soft skills using behavioral questions.

Leadership

Please describe a time when you successfully motivated a team to work towards a common goal, such as completing a project or a new initiative. How did you reach the goal with the team and how did you know you were successful?

The interviewer is assessing:

  • Ability to support others to new achievements
  • Build group cohesion and commitment to reach common goals
  • Recognizing success


In your answer, show the interviewer you considered:

  • How did you persuade team members to follow your advice and work together?
  • How did you delegate work?
  • What communication approaches did you use to help you lead the team?

Team Building or Team Work

Please describe your experience in working with an individual to help them succeed on a particular project or in their daily assignments?

The interviewer is assessing:

  • Adding value to the work of others
  • Supporting and helping team succeed
  • Involving group in setting goals. planning and evaluation.
    Creating effective teamwork


In your answer, show the interviewer you considered:

  • What was the process you used to assist the individual in going from their current situation to one where they were successful in completing projects/daily assignments?
  • What was the outcome?

Performance Focus

Tell us about a time when you had to assist in the performance improvement of a direct report?

The interviewer is assessing:

  • Clarifying individual roles for performance improvement
  • Instilling confidence and encouraging initiative through delegation of authority and commitment of resources

In your answer, show the interviewer you considered:

  • What was the process you used to assist in the performance improvement of the individual?
  • How was an environment maintained whereby the individual could take risks and learn?
  • Did the individual encounter obstacles?  How did you help him/her in overcoming them?
  • What was the outcome?

Communication

Please describe a time when you have communicated a new initiative or plan to staff or team members?

The interviewer is assessing:

  • Ability to promote trust and commitment through enthusiastic verbal, non-verbal and written presentation.
  • Ability to listen and understanding.

In your answer, show the interviewer you considered:

  • What was the process you took to communicate the to staff or team members?
  • What forms of communication did you use when communicating the message?
  • How did you ensure that the message you gave was understood both clearly and accurately?
  • Did you receive feedback from your staff?
  • How did you handle feedback?

Initiative

Please tell us about a time when you launched a successful program or  initiative?

The interviewer is assessing:

  • Ability to act and make decisions without the help or advice of other people.

In your answer, show the interviewer you considered:

  • What were the steps you took in the process of launching this initiative?
  • How did you ensure that employees understood the issues involved in the initiative?
  • How did you gain the cooperation of others, with respect to promoting this initiative in the workplace?
  • Did you encounter any obstacles?  How were they overcome?

Interpersonal

Tell us about a time when you were able to convey respect and understanding of a client’s concern?

The interviewer is assessing:

  • Ability to empathize with the client’s point of view and to convey respect for and understanding of their situation and concerns.

In your answer, show the interviewer you considered:

  • What was your approach to dealing with the client?
  • How did you ensure your understanding of the client’s concerns?
  • What was the outcome of the situation?

Customer Service

Tell us about how you have maintained a client focus in your experiences as a manager, perhaps in dealing with new clients or maintaining a good relationship with existing ones?

The interviewer is assessing:

  • Anticipate and actively investigate client needs, seek opportunities to assist clients for their benefit.
  • Actively understand and solve client problems in a timely manner, and follows up to ensure that due resolution.


In your answer, show the interviewer you considered:

  • What steps do you normally take when dealing with a new client?
  • How do you prioritize your client interaction?
  • How do you ensure that follow-up, when necessary, occurs with the client?

Problem Solving

Please give us an example of when you have come up with a creative solution to a problem or issue?

The interviewer is assessing:

  • Encouraging change and improvement by seeking solutions, thinking from different perspectives.


In your answer, show the interviewer you considered:

  • How did you decide that the solution you used was the best for the situation?
  • What risk was involved?


Decision Making

Tell us about a time when you have had to consider a wide variety of departments or stakeholders when making a decision?

The interviewer is assessing:

  • Process of making choices or reaching conclusions, especially on important business matters.

In your answer, show the interviewer you considered:

  • How did you determine who you needed to consider when making the decision?
  • What did you have to take into account when making the decision?  Why?
    How did the decision you made affect other areas?

Technical

Tell us about a time when your technical knowledge helped you to deliver better service?

The interviewer is assessing:

  • Ability to access, analyze, and deliver knowledge and understanding by applying technologies and processes.


In your answer, show the interviewer you considered:

  • What technologies and processes did you apply?
  • How did you go about accessing the required technical resources?
  • What process did you use to convey knowledge and understanding?

For more see our articles, tips and sample resumes on our site. So until our next post, we wish you much luck and success in your career search.

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