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The New York Times Interview
Questions

30 Questions and Answers by
| Rachelle is a job search expert, career coach, and headhunter
who helps everyone from students to fortune executives find success in their career.

Question 1 of 30

What are your salary expectations?

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The New York Times Interview Questions

  1. 1.

    What are your salary expectations?

      In many states, it is now illegal for hiring authorities to ask about your current earnings. A question like this will give the interviewer a solid idea of what you are hoping to earn. When you change positions, you want to see an increase in wage. Most interviewees will typically aim for a 7-15% increase for each time they change jobs. This range offers room for negotiations with the new company. This percentage increase reflects economic inflation, the unique skills you bring to the table from the last time you joined an organization, and growth in responsibilities. The best way to discuss your salary expectations is to use your current earnings as an example if you are comfortable doing so. If this makes you uncomfortable, do give as many indicators as you can. Be open, and honest. Transparency is the best choice when salary based questions arise.

      If you are newer to your career, or the area, and are unsure of what a fair ask may be, there are many reliable salary calculators available online.

      Rachelle's Answer

      "Currently, I earn a base salary of $45,000 per year, and I would like to earn slightly higher in my next position, as I have additional certifications since my last salary negotiation took place."

      Rachelle's Answer

      "I am currently making $80,000 per year with two bonus opportunities based on project completion. I am looking for compensation that is aligned with the responsibilities of this role and provides an opportunity to learn new skills."

  2. 2.

    When have you worked among a diverse group of people?

      The interviewer would like to know that you are accustomed to working with a broad range of people. Are you accustomed to working with a very large or diverse team of individuals? Assure the interviewer that you can handle an environment that offers diversity.

      Rachelle's Answer

      "I have worked with diverse groups of people most of my career, including my time at university. I am most comfortable, and happy, in this type of environment because it offers a great learning opportunity."

      Rachelle's Answer

      "I would say that pretty much every company I have worked for has valued diversity. Working with people from all walks of life help shed different perspectives and identify potential problems faster."

  3. 3.

    The media industry is all about communication. At The New York Times, strong communication is at the forefront of what we do. How would you describe your communication skills? Rate your communication skills from 1-10.

      In any media related position, you must be a clear and concise communicator. Talk to the interviewer about your communication style and how you feel it will work with the communication standards set by The New York Times.

      Rachelle's Answer

      "I would rate my communication skills as a 9 out of 10 because they are exceptional; yet, there is always room for improvement. I would describe my communication style as thorough, upbeat, yet concise. I firmly believe that my communication skills will meet the standards you have set at The New York Times."

      Rachelle's Answer

      "I will rate myself an 8.5 because I consider myself a strong communicator. It is the foundation of all success in business. I am always striving to be a better communicator, so I leave the rest of the scale as an aspirational measure."

  4. 4.

    What is your favorite publication, and why?

      Trick question! If you are interviewing with The New York Times, you will certainly want to mention that you are a fan of their work. No need to say they are your favorite (if they aren't) but at least give them a nod.

      Rachelle's Answer

      "I read a wide array of publications and yours, The New York Times, is always in the mix. I especially appreciate your approach on political pieces."

      Rachelle's Answer

      "I have a range of publications that I rotate. The New York Times is always in the mix. Among my favorites are also The Washington Post and Medium online. I would love to learn about other options as well. May I ask what your favorite publications are?"

  5. 5.

    How do you react to an increase in your workload?

      Workloads will increase and decrease as the market demands. The interviewer would like to know how you adapt when the work starts to pile up. Show that you are willing to work faster, put in overtime, or take work home when needed. You will also want to express your time-management abilities.

      Rachelle's Answer

      "I fully understand that my workload will increase from time to time and I easily accept that. I prefer it when times are busy, so I do not mind an increase in workload now and then."

      Rachelle's Answer

      "In my current position, my workload changes depending on the team and their needs. I can adapt to those needs quickly and effectively. Just last week two team members were sick, and my workload increased significantly. I worked overtime and met my deadlines."

  6. 6.

    In your opinion, what is the difference between marketing and advertising?

      There are terms in the publishing industry that are similar; however, the interviewer wants assurance that you fully understand the semantics. Briefly discuss what you believe to be the most significant difference between marketing and advertising.

      Rachelle's Answer

      "To me, the most significant difference between marketing and advertising is that advertising is simply one component of an entire marketing plan. The term marketing encompasses topics such as public relations, distributions, sales, market research, and more."

      Rachelle's Answer

      "Marketing refers to an entire plan when it comes to approach and distribution. Advertising is simply one facet of a marketing plan."

  7. 7.

    What expertise do you bring in digital KPIs and analytics?

      Be prepared to discuss with the interviewer the types of digital KPIs and analytics you are accustomed to tracking. Some important KPIs in the world of digital content creation may include analytics around reach; including unique visits. Engagement rates; including time spent on your page, ad, or video. You may also look at the number of engaged comments or social sharing rates. Talk to the interviewer about the KPIs that you currently work with, and why you believe they are essential to track.

      Rachelle's Answer

      "In my current role, the numbers that I care about the most include our sentiment rates. I look at the number of comments and engagement. I like to see soaring numbers when it comes to social media shares or @ tags. Nothing feels as great as seeing your digital content go viral and I look forward to achieving more of that in my career with The New York Times."

      Rachelle's Answer

      "When it comes to digital KPIs, my current employer puts a significant focus on social sharing and engaged comments. When digital content is good, viewers will quickly share without hesitation. When engagement rates are high, it's a quick indicator that your content is on point."

  8. 8.

    What is the most significant achievement you have on the horizon?

      When you show that you have goals and achievements on the horizon, you are letting the interviewer know that you put thought into your career and what you bring to your employer. Employees who do not have goals set just beyond their reach are typically disengaged and unmotivated. This achievement does not need to be complicated. It can be as simple as finishing a beautiful Powerpoint presentation, finishing work-related coursework, or reaching a sales target.

      Rachelle's Answer

      "I have some great accomplishments on the horizon including the launch of my biggest ever content marketing strategy later this month. This account is the biggest that I have worked with, and it's a fascinating campaign. With that said, I look forward to joining The New York Times and working on significant projects like this more often."

      Rachelle's Answer

      "This year I have been working towards my Bachelor's in Advertising while also working full time. This effort has been challenging and rewarding all at the same time. My graduation date is this May, so that is the most significant achievement on the horizon."

  9. 9.

    Where do you believe the newspaper industry will be in 5 years? Support your response.

      The interviewer wants to know that you believe in the longevity of The New York Times and the future of the newspaper industry. Of course, since you are interviewing for a newspaper publication, you want to keep your response positive. Be sure to support your opinion with the research you have done on the newspaper publishing industry.

      Rachelle's Answer

      "I was recently reading an article on trends and facts in the newspaper industry, from a journalism publication which had some powerful ideas on the future of the newspaper industry. Even though the purchase of physical newspapers has declined over the past 15 years, the number of visitors coming to a newspapers' website had increased exponentially. I believe that alternative print publications will exist for many years to come; however, many newspapers will begin to rely more heavily on their digital subscriber base who still go to them for reliable, consistent, and trustworthy content."

      Rachelle's Answer

      "I believe that newspaper subscribers are also going to ask for digital subscription options, allowing them to pivot between the two mediums. Although sales of traditional print newspapers have decreased over the years, discerning readers will still turn to these traditional methods for reliable news. Readership will still exist; it just may be more digital and online, as time goes on. I think The New York Times understands this since you have already pivoted to a strong online presence."

  10. 10.

    How do you prevent burnout and remain highly motivated?

      Working in the media and publication industry means a lot of hours, and rarely turning your brain off due to a fast-pace and high expectations. Talk to the interviewer about your ability to remain motivated, even if you are asked to work a lot. Discuss how you make sure that you are not burning out on the job.

      Rachelle's Answer

      "I was taught early on in my career that planning a project clearly, from start to finish, is a great way to prevent burnout and keep motivation high. When effort expectations are set forth right away, this minimizes my stress and keeps me moving at a manageable pace."

      Rachelle's Answer

      "It's tough to burn me out because I am working in an industry that I love so much! I make sure to get plenty of time working on my own creative projects, keeping me happy and highly motivated."

  11. 11.

    Name for me some of the publications we have in circulation. Which do you read most often?

      The interviewer wants to be sure that you have done your homework on their publication. Most major publications offer multiple sub-publications geared towards niche markets. Discuss which The New York Times publications you are best versed in and why. Be sure to support your interests.

      Rachelle's Answer

      "From what I understand, The New York Times a few different publications. One is your primary newspaper with the others being more targeted towards politics, sports, and lifestyle. The newspaper which I read most often is your primary publication. I like to be informed and well-rounded on multiple subjects."

      Rachelle's Answer

      "The fashion publication you release, The New York Times Style Magazine' is hands down the one I read the most. As an avid fashion enthusiast, I appreciate the effort that goes into your unique articles."

  12. 12.

    Have you ever had to adapt your work style to fit team objectives?

      The interviewer wants to see that you are open to change and are adaptable. Think about the times when you have had to learn a new policy, change your organization approach, or times when you have had to change your plan for meeting a goal. Talk to the interviewer about how you altered this work style to achieve the team's objectives. Be sure to mention that you were happy to accommodate this change to help the team reach the overall goal.

      Rachelle's Answer

      "Typically, I like to begin my day with listening to voicemail, checking emails, and making a to-do list for the day. The goal of this team was to increase staff communication, so we decided to start each morning with a team huddle instead. This change meant that I was unable to kick-off my day with my usual morning routine. I was happy to meet with the team huddles because I understood that they were helping us meet our goal of improving communication."

      Rachelle's Answer

      "Every time I gain a new team member, and my team expands, I have to change my management styling just a touch to fit the new hire. I will slow down my communication until they are up to speed, for example. I want new hires to succeed, and part of that means ensuring they are not lost or falling behind."

  13. 13.

    How do you think that online media has changed traditional print and broadcast media approaches in the past 10 years?

      This industry is ever-changing, and all types of media outlets have been scrambling to keep up with the introduction of online media. Talk to the interviewer about your insights when it comes to the changes you have witnessed in traditional media since the introduction of online media.

      Rachelle's Answer

      "Online media has changed the way we digest information. Most people look for content online because it's fast and we can read the opinions of others which helps us to form our own. This content is both convenient and dangerous at times as it doesn't necessarily promote free thought. I think that traditional print media has become lighter and more entertainment-driven because of this."

      Rachelle's Answer

      "I believe that online media has rapidly increased the amount of content that we feel we need in a day. Where it used to be that our parents would watch or read the local news once every morning or evening, we are now constantly logging in, and looking for updates on stories that may not even directly affect us. This response means that newspapers are often struggling with sales, and we have global 24/7 news channels."

  14. 14.

    What has been the best short-form content project you have worked on this year?

      The interviewer would like to have more information on the project in which you are most proud. If you have a digital portfolio with you, this is a great tool to use when describing the best short-form content project you have worked on this year.

      Rachelle's Answer

      "I genuinely enjoy working on both long and short-form content projects; however, I do find short-form digital content to be especially thrilling to create. A favorite short-form project that I worked on this year was a series of educational shorts for a children's channel with which I collaborated. It was important to me that the messaging be clear while also being fun and educational. Mission accomplished, as the series received more shares, comments, and downloads than any other we have released in the past five years."

      Rachelle's Answer

      "This year I was part of a team that created a series of interactive landing pages for an upcoming film we were marketing. To include interactive elements such as reveal marketing, contests, and gamification, we grew engagement exponentially. I would love to show you more from my portfolio, which I prepared for you."

  15. 15.

    Are you applying for any other jobs?

      The interviewer at The New York Times would like to know if they will need to compete with other companies when it comes to hiring you. It always puts a little bit of fire under the hiring manager if they are aware that you are actively looking for a new position. Tell the interviewer about your search so far without disclosing every single detail.

      Rachelle's Answer

      "I am keeping an eye out for viable positions. Although I am not in the final stages with any other publication company, I am actively seeking a new position."

      Rachelle's Answer

      "I am applying to other jobs, and am actively interviewing. I do have a strong interest in your role and am wondering what your timeline looks like for the next round of interviews?"

  16. 16.

    Do you think honesty is always the best policy?

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  17. 17.

    What methods do you use, to work within a brand's voice consistently?

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  18. 18.

    How would you increase newspaper subscriptions in an online-centric world?

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  19. 19.

    If The New York Times hired you today, what would you accomplish first?

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  20. 20.

    What do you know about the nature of print advertising?

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  21. 21.

    Name for me one skill mentioned in our job posting, that you do not possess. How will you gain that skill?

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  22. 22.

    How do you react when you are dissatisfied with the quality of your work, or the outcome of your work?

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  23. 23.

    Have you ever managed or helped with a content budget? If so, what type of budgets are you accustomed to working with?

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  24. 24.

    Market research is important to The New York Times in order to help us understand where to take our business in the years to come. Rate your research skills from 1-10. Do you enjoy conducting research?

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  25. 25.

    Would you consider yourself a creative person?

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  26. 26.

    Describe to me the types of digital media you are most experienced with.

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  27. 27.

    Outside of work, what type of creative activities do you like to pursue?

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  28. 28.

    How often do you take work home with you?

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  29. 29.

    The media industry is fast moving and ever-changing. How do you stay on top of changes and trends?

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  30. 30.

    What are your career goals in the next 3-5 years with The New York Times?

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