Do you know the 7 interview questions that almost every skilled interviewer asks? Yes. Some are crazy. Did you know they are used to determine specific skills. For example:"Talk about a time when you had to overcome major obstacles."Purpose: Get a clear picture of the candidate's past performance.
Are you prepared? If you are a job seeker it is time to review them. Get your answers and thoughts very clear. If you are a recruiter you should already be using them. Have you experienced any other curve ball interviewer questions? Give us your tips and opinions.(Editors Notes:)
7 Interview questions you should know!
Question #1: "Were you affected by the heat wave/cold snap?"
Question #2: "Talk about a time when you had to overcome major obstacles."
Question #3: "What interests you about this position?"
Question #4: "Is there intelligent life in outer space?"
Question #5: "Imagine we've just hired you. What's the most important thing on your to-do list on the first day of work?
Question #6: "Why did you get into this line of work?"
Question #7: "But enough about you. What about us?"
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Question #1: "How about those Yankees?"
Every interview should begin with an icebreaker. It helps nervous applicants calm down and builds a sense of trust. If you have a 45-minute interview, you should spend at least the first five minutes trying to connect on a neutral topic. Make the person feel at ease and you'll solicit better information—and much more honest responses.
Alternate Version 1: "Did you go to the industry conference last week?"
Alternate Version 2: "Were you affected by the heat wave/cold snap?"
Alternate Version 3: "Did you have a good holiday?"
Question #2: "Talk about a time when you had to overcome major obstacles."Purpose: Get a clear picture of the candidate's past performance.
Variations on this question should actually comprise your next several questions. Don't hesitate to guide the candidate through the variety of tasks (both tangible and theoretical) necessary to perform the job, and listen carefully to how he or she has handled such challenges. Pay attention to intangibles: some people are better at performing in interviews than on the job. If your candidate continually plays the role of hero or victim, that's a red flag that you're probably not getting the whole story.
Alternate Version 1: "Tell me about a time when you wrote a report that was well received. Why do you think it was successful?"
Alternate Version 2: "Describe a time when you hired (or fired) the wrong person."
Alternate Version 3: "If you had to do that activity again, how would you do it differently?"
Question #3: "What interests you about this position?"Purpose: Find out how the candidate feels about the job and the company.
People apply for jobs for plenty reasons besides the obvious ones. Asking a candidate why he or she wants the position gives insight into their motivation. The answer may be personal (such as a narrative about what spurred them to seek a new job), or it may connect the candidate to the company: her experience with the brand, the mission statement, or the organization's role in the community. Any of these answers (or some combination) are acceptable—a personal answer can communicate trust, and a connection to the business indicates loyalty and a sense of ownership.
Alternate Version 1: "Where does this job fit into your career path?"
Alternate Version 2: "If you had to convince a friend or colleague to apply for this job, what might you tell them?"
Alternate Version 3: "What motivated you to apply for this job?"
Question #4: "Is there intelligent life in outer space?"Purpose: Find out what kind of thinker the candidate is and how he deals with surprises.
This is your curve ball, designed to make the candidate ad-lib instead of just reciting well-rehearsed answers. How much will he or she play along? As long as it's not too short or too long, virtually any response is a good one. But pay attention to attitude, the way the candidate approaches the problem, and the ease or difficulty they have in coming up with a response.
Alternate Version 1: "How many phone books are there in New York City?"
Alternate Version 2: "How do they get the cream filling inside a Twinkie?"
Alternate Version 3: "Why do people climb mountains?"
Question #5: "Imagine we've just hired you. What's the most important thing on your to-do list on the first day of work?"
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