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Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Interview Questions

29 Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Interview Questions
Question 1 of 29
If you could start your career over again, what direction would you take?
How to Answer
A hiring manager will be able to tell a lot about your personality by learning about your other career interests. This is not a way of showing that you are dissatisfied in what you do but rather a way to showcase your many passions. If you could do anything over, what would you do, and why?

Answer Example
"I certainly do not regret the direction I have taken my career; however, if I had to completely start over in a new direction I would likely pursue a degree in creative writing and become a writer. Both of my parents were writers and they seemed to have a very fulfilling career. I do currently write for an educational blog which has been a great outlet for my creativity."
Answer Example
"I am very satisfied with the direction my career has taken. If I could change anything I would perhaps have furthered my education to include a Masters' degree. It's not too late, maybe I will apply for a program in the future."
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Question 2 of 29
What questions do you have for me?
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How to Answer
It's always a great idea to have questions ready for the interviewer. Review the company website and other online resources to ensure the questions you are asking are not mundane, or redundant. The last thing an interviewer wants to hear is a list of questions you could have found the answers to from a simple Google search. It's also a good idea to write your questions down and review them before the interview.

Answer Example
"Here are some sample questions: - When would you like to have this position filled? - How long has this role been vacant? - Is this a replacement search or a newly created role? - What is your favorite part about working here? - What is a project you have completed here that you are really proud of? - What is the facility's primary goal for this position in the next 12 months? - What is a new trend in education that you are excited about? - Is there anything from my background and experience that I can clarify for you? - What do you see as the biggest change in the publishing industry over the past 3 years? - Is there any reason why you would not hire me?"
Answer Example
"Thank you for asking - I do have a few questions. What is top of mind when it comes to filling this role? In addition, what types of career growth opportunities would follow this position? And lastly, do you have internal candidates who are also interviewing for this position?"
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Question 3 of 29
Tell me something about yourself that I wouldn't know from reading your resume.
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How to Answer
The interviewer would like to get to know you apart from what is written on your resume. The interviewer also wants to get a sense of how your personality would fit with the team. You are certainly not obligated to discuss personal matters such as your kids, or relationship status, for instance. Stick with a couple of fun facts to show the interviewer that you are a real person, too. Your answer should be unique so that you are a memorable candidate!

Focus on special non-work related skills or hobbies. For example, you might share that you enjoy beat-boxing, making origami swans or mountain climbing. Be prepared for the interviewer to stop you and ask you to perform your skill on the spot when it's possible! (This will make you unforgettable!)

Answer Example
"I am an avid marathon runner and have traveled to 10 countries in the last 8 years to compete in a variety of races. I am a competitive individual and enjoy keeping fit. At my last job I started a running club, it was fun to share my passion with my coworkers."
Answer Example
"I am bilingual in Spanish and have some proficiency in French and Italian, too. I love learning new languages. I also am a huge Harry Potter fan and could pretty much quote each book to you! Reading books is such a great way to unwind."
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Question 4 of 29
How do you handle stress on the job?
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How to Answer
Are you someone who is able to handle stress on the job? How do you manage the stressful times? Handling stress is an important ability to have in the workplace. Talk to the interviewer about your ability to manage pressure in the workplace.

Answer Example
"I handle stress very well and when you call my references, they will attest to this fact. When I am under pressure on the job, I focus on the task at hand and make sure to not get distracted. Staying on deadline is very helpful and I will delegate when necessary to alleviate some stress. I also keep a detailed tracker of all my work so that I don't miss anything."
Answer Example
"Stress is part of any demanding job and I embrace it to the fullest. I take good care of myself personally by getting enough sleep and eating well and I prioritize my workload to maintain a healthy balance in my stress levels."
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Question 5 of 29
What are your salary expectations?
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How to Answer
The best way to discuss your salary expectations are to use your current earnings as an example. Be open, and honest. Transparency is the best choice when salary based questions arise. Make sure that you also research the role, if a salary range is mentioned, try to fit within that range.

Answer Example
"Currently, I earn a base salary of $45,000 per year plus a potential 20% annual bonus. Last year my earnings were $52,000 and I would like to stay in the same range or slightly higher. I also want the opportunity to eventually apply for management roles."
Answer Example
"I am currently making $60,000 per year as a Sales Rep which includes my commission. I am looking for compensation that is aligned with the role and provides opportunity for growth."
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Author of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Answers and Questions

Carly Zucker
Carly Zucker is an Instructional Designer who creates training for higher education, K-12 and organizations. She also has a background in corporate recruiting. With her experience, she enjoys creating fun and engaging material for her learners. When she is not kayaking or trying a new restaurant, she is writing about exciting innovations in education.
Published: 08/07/2018

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About Our Interview Questions

Our interview questions are created by writers, almost all of which, have a long history of recruiting and interviewing candidates. They do not necessarily have experience interviewing or working with companies, careers, or schools, in which they may write for on We do, however, strive to match their background and expertise with the appropriate question sets found on our website.

Our careers, companies, industries, and schools may have duplicate interview questions and answers found elsewhere on our website. Specifically, our companies and our graduate school interviews. For these two, we use the industry in which we believe the company most well-represents and the graduate programs, as the basis for the interview questions and answers that generate for each company or school.

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About Houghton Mifflin Harcourt

Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (/ˈhoʊtən ˈmɪflɪn ˈhɑrkɔrt/) is an educational and trade publisher in the United States. Headquartered in Boston's Back Bay, it publishes textbooks, instructional technology materials, assessments, reference works, and fiction and non-fiction for both young readers and adults.

The company was formerly known as Houghton Mifflin Company but changed its name following the 2007 acquisition of Harcourt Publishing. Prior to March 2010, it was a subsidiary of Education Media and Publishing Group Limited, an Irish-owned holding company registered in the Cayman Islands and formerly known as Riverdeep.