Here are some of the more frequently asked questions and possible responses,
but remember, on the day, don't be rushed into giving an immediate answer. Take time to think.
Use delaying tactics to buy you time. 'That's a very good question' is a phrase that can buy
you valuable seconds to think up an answer.
Why do you want this job? / Why do you want to work for this
Always stress the positive answers. Think about why you want to join this
company rather than why you want to leave the last one. For example, the company invests
heavily in training and development, there is a definite career path, but avoid anything like
'shorter working hours'.
What qualities do you think you will need to do this
Think about the ones that aren't in the job description. Good analytical
skills, problem solving, leadership, communication skills.
What can you contribute to the role?
Don't be shy. This is your chance to sing your praises. Talk about some of
the things that you have achieved in the past, things that you did at your last
What do you know about this company?
This is when all your research pays off. If you haven't taken the time to
learn about the company they will hardly take your interest in the job as
Where do you want to be in five years time?
Avoid the 'doing your job answer'. Think about what you really want to
achieve and talk in general terms. For example, I'd like to be managing a team, have a degree
of autonomy, have my own department.
Why are you looking to leave your present employer?
Don't run down your present employer. If you bad-mouth your current employer
your interviewer will simply be wondering what you'll say about them should you ever move
Think about an answer which shows you in a positive light. 'I feel ready for
the next step in my career and there are no opportunities at my present firm unless someone
What would your ideal job be?
Remember that your at an interview and don't shoot yourself in the foot.
Describe a role that fits in with the company but demonstrates ambition or the desire to learn.
'I'd like to be a department head once I've got a little more experience' 'I would like
to take on more responsibility'
What are your strengths ?
Don't be shy, but think of ones that are relevant to the job but also add
value. I'm cool under pressure. I'm a good time manager. Be prepared to back these up with
What are your weaknesses?
Don't give the whole list! Think of one that you can admit to that can be
turned into a strength. For example; I'm bad at delegating, because I'm a perfectionist and
like to know that things are being done properly'
Do you work well with others or are you a loner?
Remember that some jobs need a team player whilst others require you to work
alone. Answer depending on the job but remember to leave it open. No-one likes extremes so a
team player who can work alone or someone who is happy to work alone or in a team is a safe