MockQuestions

Behavioral Interview Questions

To help you prepare for your next job interview, here are 31 Behavioral interview questions and answer examples.

Our Behavioral Questions were written by and updated on December 14th, 2021. Learn more about this page.

Question 1 of 31

Describe a time when you motivated yourself to complete an assignment or task that you did not feel like doing.

The Goal

The interviewer wants to know that you will still get the job done even when you aren't excited about the task at hand. The goal of your response is to show that you are a reliable person who delivers high-quality work, regardless of how motivated you feel at the moment. By the end of your reply, the interviewer should feel confident that you are a self-motivated individual who takes accountability for your work.

Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

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31 Behavioral Interview Questions & Answers

  • 1. Describe a time when you motivated yourself to complete an assignment or task that you did not feel like doing.

      The Goal

      The interviewer wants to know that you will still get the job done even when you aren't excited about the task at hand. The goal of your response is to show that you are a reliable person who delivers high-quality work, regardless of how motivated you feel at the moment. By the end of your reply, the interviewer should feel confident that you are a self-motivated individual who takes accountability for your work.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      How to Answer

      Tell the interviewer about a specific situation in which you completed something you didn't feel motivated to do. Outline the situation, describe your responsibility, and explain why you were not excited about it. Be sure to tell the interviewer that even though you were not enthusiastic about the task, you did it promptly and with care, knowing that it would help the organization as a whole. Give as much detail as you can about the actions you took to reach the finish line. If your hard work made a measurable impact, be sure to offer details about this accomplishment.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      Pro Tip

      'Describe a time when...' means that the interviewer is looking for a story-based example for this behavioral-based interview question. This style means forming a response using the STAR method. STAR is an acronym for Situation, Task, Action, Result. Organizing your response using this framework will ensure that you provide the interviewer with the right amount of information and detail to form a compelling answer.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      What to Avoid

      Avoid giving a general answer regarding your level of self-motivation. Stay away from vague statements like, 'I cannot think of a time when I struggled to complete an assignment or task. I am a very self-motivated person who rarely has trouble staying on task.'

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      Human Resources Example

      "(Situation) My current company receives an incredibly high volume of online job applicants every day. (Task) As the HR assistant, it is my job to review the resumes in our job portal every week. The task can be repetitive, and it takes a lot of care and attention. (Action) I set rewards for myself. Sometimes there will be up to 200 resumes to review. They all begin to look the same over time, so I set a goal to look at 20 at a time, give myself a quick break, and then return to the task. (Result) I do this every week and have been able to get through all the new resumes every week. As a result, no applicants wait more than seven days for a response, which I believe is an excellent business practice."

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      Marketing Example

      "(Situation) Part of our project process is to have an initial discovery call with our clients. The call is supposed to take about an hour, but I tend to take up to two hours explaining our process to the clients. I began to dread these calls. (Task) As the marketing manager, I lead these calls. I know that at least 50% of the call is not a good use of time for my team, myself, and my client. We spend so much time explaining our approach and less time talking to the client about their vision for the project. (Action) I decided to have our team create a library of resources for our clients. We would share these digital resources before the initial client call, allowing the client to learn more about our process upfront. (Result) Now, I spend much less call time relaying tactical information and more time getting to the necessary details. These calls are much more enjoyable for everyone now."

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      Sales Example

      "(Situation) At Company ABC, every sales rep must document in the CRM immediately after a client appointment. (Task) As a salesperson, I do not always like filling out the CRM immediately. It's time-consuming, and I often need to get to my next client appointment. Also, I like the call, the chase, the close. Taking time to pause and write out the details of the conversation and projections is not something I look forward to doing because it slows me down. However, I understand that it's a necessary step in the sales process. (Action) To ensure that I am compliant, I now give myself an extra 15 minutes between appointments to ensure that I have the time to document properly. (Result) Not only does this approach keep me on track with my notes, but it has helped me to sell more since I have more up-to-date client analytics. I realize that our CRM is an essential sales tool. It helps me and my company to succeed, even if it takes slowing down and doing a seemingly monotonous task."

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      Administration Example

      "(Situation) Recently, my boss asked me to clean out our huge office supply closet. It was a daunting job. (Task) The 3,000 square foot room had become a dumping ground of junk and random items that we never use. As the admin assistant, I knew it was up to me to put my whole heart into the task to make the lives of my co-workers so much better through the art of organization. (Action) I came to work over the next four days, prepared with comfortable clothes and shoes, and tackled the job. I created a pile for keep, one for recycling, one for donating, and one for the garbage. (Result) In the end, the supply room looked like an office supply store! Everyone appreciated my hard work, and I was glad that I chose to shift my mindset and find the motivation to get the job done with enthusiasm."

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      Retail Example

      "(Situation) As an assistant manager for the clothing department in Department Store X, my least favorite task is cleaning out the dressing rooms and doing take-backs. (Task) However, these tasks are a significant part of what I do and an important part of keeping the store clean and organized. As the assistant manager, I never show my dislike for these particular tasks. (Action) Instead, I incentivize myself and my team to make these tasks fun. I will run little contests for the team. For example, one day, I bought a coffee for the person who organized their section of the store perfectly. (Result) I have been able to change the attitude of my team and department by implementing these incentives. As a result, our store now looks clean, tidy, and organized. The customers appreciate the added effort since it makes their shopping experience much better."

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      Teacher Example

      "(Situation) We all know that the report card season is busy and can be overwhelming. (Task) As a junior-high teacher for our city's largest middle school, I have over three hundred students, so it's an enormous task. (Action) I make these report cards personalized, knowing the parents appreciate the added effort. So, it becomes a rather large project. I make sure to break the reports up by class and complete one class per day. (Result) It's not a fancy process, but it works for me. I believe the extra effort is appreciated as I often receive kind emails from the students' parents, thanking me for the added detail on how their kids are performing in class."

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      Manager Example

      "(Situation) In the warehouse where I currently work, our turnover is high due to the strenuous nature of the job. (Task) I manage over 500 warehouse associates and see around a 5% turnover rate month-over-month, which equals about one person per day. This number means a lot of terminations, which I do not enjoy leading. (Action) Although I dread this task, I balance it out by reminding myself that we have a fantastic new employee lined up as a replacement who will perform better and compliment the positive workplace culture. (Result) By changing my mindset, I can better focus on the job at hand, which is leading and growing the associates who want to be there."

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      Community Answer

      "I am mostly active and self-motivated. But when I have to do something that I don't feel like doing, I turn around to be who works following the money. I remind me the company pays me because I work. And it works much more than I try to find the meaning of itself. Once the work initiated, I feel like performing better."

      Written by an Anonymous User

      Rachelle Enns

      Our Professional Interview Coach
      Rachelle Enns Reviewed the Above Answer

      This seems like a good way to stay motivated! It's good that you added in the fact that you are self-motivated most of the time.

      "I am active and self-motivated; however, there are times when I run out of steam. During those times, I remind myself that the company pays me for my best work. Once I have initiated a task, I always feel better and can perform as expected."

  • 2. Think about a difficult boss, professor, or coworker. How did you successfully interact with this person?

      The Goal

      The interviewer wants to see evidence that you can interact professionally and constructively with others, even if they have a challenging personality or work style. The goal of your response is to show the interviewer that you work well with a range of individuals. Your answer should assure the decision-maker that your communication style will be an excellent addition to their team.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      How to Answer

      Answer this question by telling the interviewer about a specific time you encountered a challenging boss, professor, or co-worker and successfully communicated with them. Outline the situation, describe why it was vital that you communicated successfully with this person, and explain the actions you took to build a healthy relationship with the individual.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      Pro Tip

      'Think about a time when...' means that the interviewer is looking for a story-based example when responding to this behavioral-based interview question. This means that you should form a response using the STAR method. STAR is an acronym for Situation, Task, Action, Result. Organizing your response using this framework will ensure that you provide the interviewer with the right amount of information and detail.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      What to Avoid

      Avoid speaking poorly of anyone you have worked with in the past or present. You should also avoid giving a general answer regarding your approach to getting along with others. Statements like, 'I can't think of a time when this happened because I get along with everyone,' should also be avoided.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      Entry Level Example

      "(Situation) I once worked at a locally-owned shop where the owner was very demanding. When he walked into the store, employees would announce over their headset system that the owner was in the building so that everyone could prepare for his entrance into their department. (Task) I am a perpetually positive person, so I assumed that he had great intentions; however, his people skills were a little rough. I could see that he meant well, and I recognized that he wanted to do a lot of good things. I was determined to help my co-workers see it this way as well. (Action) When we interacted, I always took his feedback with the understanding that he didn't mean things as harshly as he might say them. Slowly, he began to soften up. As my colleagues saw that my approach was working, they began to communicate with the owner in the same manner. (Result) After just a few months, the mood of the store was more positive, and our team was much more at ease."

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      Administration Example

      "(Situation) I once worked for an executive who was very difficult in meetings. He did not interact politely with others. (Task) As his Executive Assistant, I took it upon myself to help this person interact better with our team and stakeholders. (Action) When he would bark orders, I would reiterate what he was trying to say to the group more professionally. It was a subtle approach, and I did so with total respect and patience. (Result) It took some time to see change, but soon he learned to communicate in a way that made people want to collaborate with him."

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      Marketing Example

      "(Situation) The most difficult person I ever worked with was my boss a few years back. She was the Marketing Associate until she was promoted to Marketing Manager. Unfortunately, after her promotion, she was no longer willing to listen to my project ideas. I believe this was partly out of pride and partly because she was trying to find her footing in this larger role. (Task) Because our roles were so closely aligned, I knew that we needed to learn to work together. (Action) I sat with her for a one-on-one meeting, and we had a nice talk about the positive changes she made to the department. After I showed her that I appreciated her contribution, I then presented my thoughts about growing the ideas that she had started. (Result) We quickly became a great duo. We worked very well together by combining our strengths to make each project exceptional. Today, she stands as one of my professional references."

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      Sales Example

      "(Situation) In the past, I struggled with my VP of Sales. She was brought on with no industry experience and seemed to have little interest in learning the industry. (Task) As the Sales Manager, it was up to me to win her over. (Action) I invited her on a business trip for an out-of-town client. I wanted her to meet my clients. I aimed to spend one-on-one time to get to know her personality and approach. I asked questions about her background, what attracted her to our company, and her short-term goals for the organization. (Result) During the trip, we bonded as humans, mothers, and sales executives. She learned a lot about the company and industry, and I learned about the skills she brought from her previous roles."

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      Retail Example

      "(Situation) One of the most difficult people I've encountered was a customer at ABC Luxury Store. (Task) I was a personal stylist at the boutique, and this customer was notoriously difficult, cranky, and picky. However, she was a big spender, so I needed to cater to her needs. (Action) She shopped with me once per month, and each time she arrived at the showroom, I challenged myself to win her over. I gave myself incremental goals along the way - small checkpoints, such as getting a nod of approval or a smirk or grin. I made it a fun little game for myself. (Result) Ultimately, I did win her over, and she warmed up to me, even smiling now and then."

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      Teacher Example

      "(Situation) I had a coworker in the Spanish department of my former school who was very traditional in her teaching approach. She came from the school of thought that children were to be seen and not heard. (Task) I believe that kids are kids and, to be able to learn most effectively, they need to get up and move. I wanted to show her the importance of relaxing, just a touch. (Action) Over a few months, I spent more time with her in the teachers' lounge, where we would often discuss teaching philosophies and experiences. (Result) She began to trust my teaching approach, and we even collaborated on a couple of activities between classes. I think the students appreciated my efforts to help their other teacher introduce more fun in the classroom."

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      Manager Example

      "(Situation) At Business ABC, one of my managers was very cold and 'matter-of-fact' in his approach. (Task) I have worked most of my career in the logistics industry, which attracts a large variety of personalities. However, I am a warm person by nature and found it challenging to connect with this particular person. As the team lead, I needed to adapt because we collaborated on tasks nearly every day. (Action) I changed my approach by sticking solely to the facts when in meetings and always presenting data versus opinions. (Result) In the end, it wasn't the most profound relationship that I've had in my career, but we made it work for us and got along well enough to do our jobs and deliver reliable performance."

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      Community Answer

      "There was a time when I did have to work with a coworker that was hard to get along with. He wanted to do his own thing and didn't like working as a team even though he knew that some of the responsibilities belonged to both of us. When I tried to work with him, he would always say that he did not have time, maybe later, or that he was working on something else. What I did to interact with him was, I started praising his accomplishments in front of others, did small things to make his life a little easier. As time went by, he began to trust me and assist me with project tasks."

      Written by an Anonymous User

      Rachelle Enns

      Our Professional Interview Coach
      Rachelle Enns Reviewed the Above Answer

      This is awesome! What a great approach you took. Well done.

  • 3. Tell me about a time when you were in danger of missing a deadline. What did you do?

      The Goal

      The interviewer wants assurance that you can perform under pressure and still deliver on your deadlines. The goal of your response is to show the interviewer that you are a diligent person and will complete your work on time.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      How to Answer

      Answer this question by telling the interviewer about a specific time you had to perform at an accelerated level to meet an important deadline. Outline the situation and describe why it was vital to complete the deadline on time. Focus the bulk of your response on the actions you took to meet a deadline successfully. If your diligence yielded an impressive accomplishment, be sure to include this in your story-based response.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      Pro Tip

      Behavioral-based interview questions that begin with 'Tell me about a time...' are best answered using the STAR method. STAR is an acronym for Situation, Task, Action, Result. Organizing your response using this framework will ensure that you provide the interviewer with the right amount of information and detail to form a compelling answer.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      What to Avoid

      Avoid giving a general answer regarding your dedication and time-management skills. Stay away from vague statements like, 'I am sure never to miss a deadline. I am a very hard worker with excellent time management skills.'

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      Manager Example

      " (Situation) Last month, our corporate head office requested a full inventory count at random. We had just 48 hours to complete this count, and inventory counts typically take three full days to complete. (Task) I am the team lead, so it was up to me to determine how the team was going to make this happen. (Action) I rescheduled us to work longer split shifts to ensure we met the timeline without overworking anyone. I turned the task into a competition - the first person to complete their inventory section received two free movie tickets. (Result) My plan worked well! We finished the inventory count in just 39 hours, and the team remained motivated."

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      Administration Example

      "(Situation) My team and I were recently under a deadline to complete a global employee satisfaction survey. (Task) We had to execute the project from start to finish within six weeks. Before beginning, we came across one major roadblock that would prevent us from accomplishing this. Global customs would take six weeks to ship the surveys in and out of the facility. (Action) We came up with the solution to email the surveys and still include the coding that would catalog the results by location and department. (Result) It was our transparency in communication and collaborative work environment that allowed us to meet the deadline and deliver the results to the leadership team."

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      Marketing Example

      "(Situation) I was once part of a marketing project that had a major setback because of the crash of our project management software. (Task) As the Marketing Manager, it was up to me to find the solution so that our team did not miss our deadline. (Action) I went to the project backup database, quickly reviewed everyone's open tasks, rearranged the schedule, and called an emergency team meeting to set us back on course. (Result) We barely made it in time, but we did, and I was very proud of the hard work my team put in to make it happen."

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      Sales Example

      "(Situation) I currently work as a telephone sales representative in a highly competitive environment. I recently had a chaotic week; Monday was a holiday, and our company database was down on Tuesday. (Task) I was tasked with cold calling 100 prospects per day, and my numbers do not change despite long weekends or tech roadblocks. This setback meant that I needed to complete five days of work in just three. (Action) I spent a few hours of overtime and skipped my lunch breaks so that I would meet my target. I called 150 people per day and 200 on the final day. (Result) My boss was thrilled with the dedication that I showed and thanked me for not making excuses and hitting my targets despite the roadblocks."

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      Retail Example

      "(Situation) Recently, I was called into work at the last minute to help reach a buying deadline. (Task) Our previous manager had left suddenly, so I was asked to step in and make buying recommendations for next season. (Action) I stayed up for hours that night reviewing last year's data for the same season, to make educated recommendations to corporate. (Result) In the end, the company made many of its buying decisions based on my recommendations. I was so nervous throughout the entire season that I made an inaccurate representation of our data and put my job at risk. As it turned out, I was pretty accurate, and we had a successful summer season."

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      Teacher Example

      "(Situation) Last year, while writing the curriculum, we had some conflict about what lessons would be added, cut, or kept. Because of this conflict, our faculty fell behind on the curriculum deadline. (Task) Of course, as a dedicated teacher, my students and their learning always come first. I knew I needed to hustle to reach these curriculum goals before the start of the year. (Action) Ultimately, I ended up working longer hours than usual to make my final recommendations and revisions. (Result) In the end, I was able to reach my professional deadlines. I believe that my passion showed in the inspired curriculum changes I contributed."

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      Human Resources Example

      "(Situation) This past year my Regional Manager wanted to have a new sales rep hired and trained for the first week of January. (Task) She informed me of this on the first of December. (Action) To expedite the process, I requested a budget allowance to hire a recruiter. (Result) The recruiter worked fast, and we had an offer out to the perfect candidate in just three weeks."

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      Community Answer

      "We currently have goals of 25 insights a week, which I have broken down to 5 a day, so it's not so overwhelming. My manager one week upped ours to 35, which kind of threw my smaller goal system off. This needed to be completed by Friday night. I was behind because I was used to my five a day. I set myself up a tracking system on excel and tracked my progress. I did end up meeting this goal."

      Written by an Anonymous User

      Rachelle Enns

      Our Professional Interview Coach
      Rachelle Enns Reviewed the Above Answer

      This answer shows your ability to adjust while also keeping yourself accountable and on track. Nicely done!

  • 4. Tell me about a time when you worked with a person who did things very differently than you. How did you collaborate?

      The Goal

      Since everyone's work style is unique, it can be challenging to collaborate with everyone 100% of the time. The interviewer wants assurance that you are a team player, regardless of personality or work style differences. The goal of your response is to describe your approach to collaborating with others while highlighting how your collaboration style will be a good match for the new team you'll be joining.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      How to Answer

      Answer this question by telling the interviewer about a specific time you worked with someone who approached their tasks or communication style differently than you. Outline the situation and describe why it was a challenge to collaborate with this person. Focus on describing the specific actions you took to ensure a successful collaboration.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      Pro Tip

      Behavioral-based interview questions that begin with 'Tell me about a time...' are best answered using the STAR method. STAR is an acronym for Situation, Task, Action, Result. Organizing your response using this framework will ensure that you provide the interviewer with the right amount of information and detail to form a compelling answer.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      What to Avoid

      Avoid sounding closed-minded when discussing other people's work styles. You'll want to avoid sounding inflexible or like a know-it-all type of individual. You can prevent creating this impression by giving merit to different working styles, even if they do not match your own.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

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  • 5. What is your greatest work-related accomplishment to date?

      The Goal

      The interviewer wants to know what kind of work-related successes you value in the workplace. The goal of your response is to give the interviewer a firm idea of the type of accomplishments you value the most. It's best if your values align with those of the hiring company. For instance, if the hiring company values customer service, consider discussing one of your proudest customer-service-related accomplishments.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      How to Answer

      Think about a stand-out work accomplishment that you believe will resonate with the hiring company. This approach means choosing an achievement related to the successes you hope to see in this new role. This approach could also mean selecting an accomplishment that aligns with the hiring company's mission, values, and goals. Explain why the accomplishment means so much to you. If you can, finish your response with a qualifying statement regarding how you will continue this pattern of achievement if you are the chosen candidate. Be as detailed as you can. If you are new to your career, you can lean on other experiences such as school, competitive sports, or volunteer work.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      What to Avoid

      Since the interviewer asks for a work-related example, it's best to avoid discussing a personal accomplishment. Yes, you have accomplished many exciting things in your personal life! Perhaps you have raised incredible children, or you have overcome a personal struggle. However, it's essential to keep your interview answers work-relevant whenever possible.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

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  • 6. Tell me about a time when you had to learn something new within a short deadline.

      The Goal

      The interviewer wants assurance that you can learn new skills under pressure. The goal of your response is to show the hiring authority that you are willing to put in the effort required to learn new skills, even when it may seem difficult. This question also presents an excellent opportunity to express that you accept workplace changes with poise.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      How to Answer

      Think about a time you learned a new task or responsibility with little advanced notice. Perhaps your company implemented new software on which you had to give yourself a crash course. Maybe you needed to learn and implement a new procedure without notice. Perhaps your employer asked you to attend a workshop at the last minute, or you had to study for a policy exam. These make great real-life examples of times you had to learn something new within a short deadline. Discuss your diligence and actions to learn the content, task, or responsibility within a short timeline.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      Pro Tip

      Behavioral-based interview questions that begin with 'Tell me about a time...' are best answered using the STAR method. STAR is an acronym for Situation, Task, Action, Result. Organizing your response using this framework will ensure that you provide the interviewer with the right amount of information and detail to form a compelling answer.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      What to Avoid

      Avoid giving a general answer regarding your ability to learn new skills quickly. Stay away from vague statements like, 'This happens to me every day! I am often learning new tasks on the job, and I am always up for a new challenge.'

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

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  • 7. When have you had to make a split second decision? How do you react under unexpected pressure?

      The Goal

      We all make a lot of choices every day! The interviewer wants to know how you handle pressure when an unexpected decision calls for your attention. The goal of your response is to provide the interviewer with a specific example of how making quick decisions and thinking fast on your feet sets you, a top-notch professional, apart from the other candidates competing for the job.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      How to Answer

      Answer this question by telling the interviewer about a specific time you had to make a split-second decision and made the right choice, despite being under unexpected pressure. Outline the situation, describe the last-minute decision you were required to make, and explain how you came to your final decision. Be sure to tell the interviewer that you made a well-calculated decision even though you were under pressure. Give as much detail as you can regarding how you weighed the pros and cons of the decision. If your final decision made a measurable impact, be sure to discuss the results you generated.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      Pro Tip

      Behavioral-based interview questions that begin with 'When have you...' are best answered using the STAR method. STAR is an acronym for Situation, Task, Action, Result. Organizing your response using this framework will ensure that you provide the interviewer with the right amount of information and detail to form a compelling answer.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      What to Avoid

      Avoid giving a general description of how you react under pressure. For instance, saying, 'I make split decisions daily when meeting with prospects. I react well under pressure,' is vague and fails to tell a story of a specific time when you encountered a pressure-based situation and came out of it successfully.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

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  • 8. Tell me about a time when you undertook a project that demanded a lot of initiative.

      The Goal

      The interviewer wants you to demonstrate your ability to take on projects that require a great deal of commitment. The goal of your response is to show the interviewer that you are a motivated individual who is ready to take on demanding workplace initiatives such as complex projects, new accountabilities, and more significant responsibilities.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      How to Answer

      Answer this question by discussing a specific time you took the lead on a demanding initiative. Be sure to include details of your project timeline, which portion of the project you led, or what you had to teach yourself for the project to be successful.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      Pro Tip

      Behavioral-based interview questions that begin with 'Tell me about a time...' are best answered using the STAR method. STAR is an acronym for Situation, Task, Action, Result. Organizing your response using this framework will ensure that you provide the interviewer with the right amount of information and detail to form a compelling answer.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      What to Avoid

      Avoid giving a general answer regarding your willingness to take on demanding projects or initiatives. Stay away from vague examples like, 'I recently took over as leader of the entire sales team. This promotion has required a lot of initiative on my part, but I am up for the challenge.' At first glance, this example seems okay, but it's essential to provide as many details as possible about the situation, your responsibilities, the actions you have taken so far, and the results of your actions.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

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  • 9. Tell me about the most competitive work situation you have experienced. How did you handle it, and what was the result?

      The Goal

      The interviewer wants to determine if you function well in a competitive environment. The goal of your answer is to show the interviewer that you can rise to a challenge and that you are excited to push yourself to be the best. You'll also want to highlight your desire to maintain healthy competition by cheering others on along the way.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      How to Answer

      Answer this question by telling the interviewer about a specific time you faced a competitive situation at work. Perhaps you were in a friendly competition to achieve the highest sales, were working towards a promotion, or eagerly trying to win a new contract. Be sure to explain how you react in the face of competition. Discuss the actions you took to ensure healthy competition and include details of the stand-out results you generated.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      Pro Tip

      Behavioral-based interview questions that begin with 'Tell me about a time...' are best answered using the STAR method. STAR is an acronym for Situation, Task, Action, Result. Organizing your response using this framework will ensure that you provide the interviewer with the right amount of information and detail to form a compelling answer.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      What to Avoid

      Avoid giving a general response about your approach to competitive situations. Statements like, 'I haven't been in a competitive work situation, but in that case, I would do my best to be a team player and encourage collaboration,' are too vague and lack depth.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

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  • 10. What is the riskiest decision you have ever made in the workplace?

      The Goal

      The interviewer wants to know how you approach making risky decisions. The goal of your response is to show the interviewer that you can analyze a situation and that you understand the importance of making well-calculated decisions, even if there is some risk involved.



      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      How to Answer

      Start with an overview of the decision you needed to make and explain why it was risky. Describe who the situation impacted as well as the outcomes. Complete your answer by sharing how your decision paid off or mention any recognition you received for your success.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      Pro Tip

      Behavioral-based interview questions like this, where the interviewer is looking for a story example, are best answered using the STAR method. STAR is an acronym for Situation, Task, Action, Result. Organizing your response using this framework will ensure that you provide the interviewer with the right amount of information and detail to form a compelling answer.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      What to Avoid

      Avoid giving a surface-level answer that sounds like a lesson in risk-taking. For instance, 'Leaving my job to join this company is a risky decision, but if you don't try to achieve your dreams, you will not have the career progression you want.' This type of response does not answer this behavioral-based question directly and tells the interviewer very little about your behavior in the workplace.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

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  • 11. Tell me about a time when you had to adapt to major change in the workplace. How did you cope?

      The Goal

      Change is prevalent in the workplace, and interviewers want to know that you can embrace change. The goal of your response should be to help the interviewer feel confident in your ability to adapt to unexpected changes in a workplace setting.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      How to Answer

      Pick an example of a time you faced a change in the workplace and your response was constructive. Explain how the change directly impacted your job and tell the interviewer how you maintained a positive approach during the transition. Perhaps your job duties shifted, there was a significant revision in policy, you had to welcome a new manager, or your company was acquired. These situations make excellent examples to draw on when you form your story-based response.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      Pro Tip

      Behavioral-based interview questions that begin with 'Tell me about a time...' are best answered using the STAR method. STAR is an acronym for Situation, Task, Action, Result. Organizing your response using this framework will ensure that you provide the interviewer with the right amount of information and detail to form a compelling answer.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      What to Avoid

      Avoid focusing on a negative change. For example, 'When my company hired a new manager with a horrible temper, my entire work environment changed.' Also, avoid examples that could easily sound like you are blaming others. For example, 'I recently had to do an entire project by myself because my co-worker quit unexpectedly.'

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

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  • 12. Tell me about a time when you used good judgment and logic to solve a problem.

      The Goal

      The interviewer wants to know about a situation where you used good judgment to solve a work problem. The goal of your response is to assure the interviewer that you approach issues with care and logic. The interviewer should envision you using good judgment in the workplace.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      How to Answer

      Give a work-related story example that showcases your logic and reasoning abilities. Share a brief overview of the problem you faced, discuss the pros and cons of each decision you could have made, and tell the interviewer why the solution you chose was the best. Be sure to include details of the positive impact you generated for your employer by using strong judgment.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      Pro Tip

      Behavioral-based interview questions that begin with 'Tell me about a time...' are best answered using the STAR method. STAR is an acronym for Situation, Task, Action, Result. Organizing your response using this framework will ensure that you provide the interviewer with the right amount of information and detail to form a compelling answer.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      What to Avoid

      Avoid giving a vague response like, 'I use good judgment and strong logic all the time! Rest assured, if you hire me, I will make decisions that are good for the company.' Although the interviewer will be happy to hear that you plan to make wise decisions, this type of response fails to give a measurable example of your logic in action.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

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  • 13. Tell me about a time when you had to address an angry customer. What was the problem and how did you resolve it?

      The Goal

      The interviewer wants to know that you can professionally handle stressful or uncomfortable customer-related situations. The goal of your response is to showcase your ability to de-escalate customer issues and deliver professional service.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      How to Answer

      Briefly describe a time you resolved a customer service issue. Be sure to highlight your ability to remain patient and rational in the face of conflict. Focus the bulk of your response on the positive action you took and the resolution you came to with the customer rather than details of the conflict itself.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      Pro Tip

      Behavioral-based interview questions that begin with 'Tell me about a time...' are best answered using the STAR method. STAR is an acronym for Situation, Task, Action, Result. Organizing your response using this framework will ensure that you provide the interviewer with the right amount of information and detail to form a compelling answer.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      What to Avoid

      Avoid providing a long, drawn-out story that focuses on the drama surrounding an angry customer. It's easy to get lost in stories surrounding conflicts.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

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  • 14. Have you ever worked in a situation where the rules and guidelines were not clear? How did you cope?

      The Goal

      The goal of your response is to show the interviewer that you can thrive even in ambiguous situations. The interviewer should clearly understand how you approach your work when you lack explicit instructions. You should also highlight your dependence on your strong moral compass when company rules or guidelines are unclear.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      How to Answer

      Answer this question by telling the interviewer about a specific situation you faced where you were unclear about the guidelines or rules. Outline the situation, describe what your responsibility or goal was, and explain how you chose to approach the situation. Be sure to tell the interviewer that even though you were not entirely clear about the guidelines or rules, you still took great care in your approach, leaning on your knowledge base. Give as much detail as you can regarding how you coped in the face of ambiguity. If your process generated positive results, be sure to provide those details.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      Pro Tip

      'Have you ever...' means that the interviewer is looking for a story-based example for this behavioral-based interview question. This style means forming a response using the STAR method. STAR is an acronym for Situation, Task, Action, Result. Organizing your response using this framework will ensure that you provide the interviewer with the right amount of information and detail to form a compelling answer.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      What to Avoid

      Avoid saying, 'No, I have never encountered this type of situation in the workplace.' The interviewer wants a specific example. Rather than saying you don't have one, dig deeper and think about an ambiguous situation you have faced at work, school, volunteer, or even your extra-curricular activities.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

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  • 15. Tell me about a time when you had to make a decision without all the information you needed.

      The Goal

      The interviewer wants to hear more about your critical thinking skills. They would also like to see that you can use logic to make sound decisions. The goal of your response is to show that you are capable and confident when it comes to independent thinking and decision-making.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      How to Answer

      Think about a time during your career when you needed to make a decision without all of the information you would typically possess. Then, tell a story that outlines the situation and how you approached coming to a conclusion. Outline your ability to think critically and independently. At the end of your response, be sure to make a connection between your decision-making abilities and how you will make an impact in this new role.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      Pro Tip

      Behavioral-based interview questions that begin with 'Tell me about a time...' are best answered using the STAR method. STAR is an acronym for Situation, Task, Action, Result. Organizing your response using this framework will ensure that you provide the interviewer with the right amount of information and detail to form a compelling answer.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      What to Avoid

      Avoid giving a general answer regarding your decision-making skills. Stay away from vague statements like, 'I am a skilled decision-maker and am confident in my ability to come to decisions even in an ambiguous environment.'

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

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  • 16. Tell me about a time when you had to work with someone who was difficult to get along with.

      The Goal

      The interviewer wants to know how well you get along with others despite personality or work style differences. Show the interviewer that you can encounter individuals in the workplace who may seem challenging without impacting the quality of your work or your level of professionalism.


      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      How to Answer

      Focus on when your work style was different from another person, but perhaps you still had to complete a project together. Discuss, in a positive tone, how you made the situation work. Outline your ability to be a team player and build a connection with others, even if their personality or approach to work is different from yours. At the end of your response, be sure to connect your communication abilities and level of professionalism and how these factors will benefit the hiring company.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      Pro Tip

      Behavioral-based interview questions that begin with 'Tell me about a time...' are best answered using the STAR method. STAR is an acronym for Situation, Task, Action, Result. Organizing your response using this framework will ensure that you provide the interviewer with the right amount of information and detail to form a compelling answer.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      What to Avoid

      Avoid overdramatizing any event. It's also important to avoid extreme responses that include speaking negatively of others or telling the interviewer that you get along with everyone.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

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  • 17. Tell me about a time when you showed initiative by taking the lead on a team project.

      The Goal

      The interviewer wants to see that you are confident enough to take the initiative when the opportunity arises. Provide the interviewer with evidence that you are a motivated and passionate person who is ready to be an active leader in the workplace.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      How to Answer

      Describe any project or learning experience where you saw a chance to lead and took advantage of it. Talk about the success of the project and your biggest takeaway from experience.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      Pro Tip

      Behavioral-based interview questions that begin with 'Tell me about a time...' are best answered using the STAR method. STAR is an acronym for Situation, Task, Action, Result. Organizing your response using this framework will ensure that you provide the interviewer with the right amount of information and detail to form a compelling answer.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      What to Avoid

      Avoid giving a general answer regarding your willingness to take the lead at work, in school, while volunteering, or during extra-curricular activities. Stay away from vague statements like, 'I am very comfortable taking the initiative and acting like a leader. I did this while in school and even during my latest internship.'

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

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  • 18. Tell me about a time when you were unable to meet a project deadline. How did you react?

      The Goal

      The interviewer wants to know how you respond to situations in the workplace where you might feel like you failed. Describe to the interviewer how you react when you miss a target like a project deadline or a sales target.



      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      How to Answer

      Perhaps you merely underestimated the depth of the project, or maybe you faced a distraction at work. Whatever the situation was, discuss the case, what you did, and the outcome. Show the interviewer that you do not have a defeatist mentality. Nobody is perfect! The interviewer knows that there will be times when deadlines pass and projects go sideways. They want to know how you react despite the initial failure.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      Pro Tip

      Behavioral-based interview questions that begin with 'Tell me about a time...' are best answered using the STAR method. STAR is an acronym for Situation, Task, Action, Result. Organizing your response using this framework will ensure that you provide the interviewer with the right amount of information and detail to form a compelling answer.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      What to Avoid

      Avoid merely giving a general statement about your time management skills, such as, 'I always meet deadlines. I can't think of a time when this happened to me.' Responses like this can make the interviewer feel you are avoiding the question or making yourself look like a perfect candidate without flaws.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

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  • 19. Tell me about a time when you worked on a team-based project when a member was not doing their share of the work.

      The Goal

      Hiring companies look for candidates who work harder around under-performers rather than become defeated by them. The interviewer is looking for evidence that you are a problem-solver who can remain highly collaborative even when your team members may not display the same characteristics or level of dedication. Show the interviewer that you can remain tenacious and self-motivated, even when those around you do not take responsibility for their share of the work.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      How to Answer

      Think about a time during your career when you felt that your team member was not taking complete accountability for their tasks. Then, tell a story that outlines the roadblock and how you approached the situation to ensure your work quality was not sacrificed. Perhaps you were able to step in and reallocate the work among the other team members. Maybe you took on the extra workload yourself. Whatever your approach, be sure to outline your ability to maintain momentum, even when you feel like others are not as dedicated to the project as you are. At the end of your response, be sure to make a connection between your level of dedication and how you will make an impact in this new role.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      Pro Tip

      Behavioral-based interview questions that begin with 'Tell me about a time...' are best answered using the STAR method. STAR is an acronym for Situation, Task, Action, Result. Organizing your response using this framework will ensure that you provide the interviewer with the right amount of information and detail to form a compelling answer.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      What to Avoid

      Avoid speaking negatively about a co-worker, leader, or employer in general. Keep your answer focused on the solution you created and the positive outcome of your actions.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

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  • 20. Tell me about your learning style and study patterns.

      The Goal

      The interviewer wants to understand your learning methods and level of discipline when absorbing new content and gaining new skills. The goal of your response is to show the interviewer that your learning style is a match for the hiring company's onboarding approach, work environment, and employee training process.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      How to Answer

      Be as specific as possible when describing your learning style and study methods. Think back to your high school or post-secondary education and consider the successful learning and study approach you implemented during that time. If you are a professional dedicated to continued learning, discuss how you ensure that the content you are taking in is truly absorbed. At the end of your response, make a connection between your learning style and the hiring company's approach to training and educating its employees.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      Pro Tip

      Perhaps you are a visual learner who utilizes images to recall information. Maybe you prefer to listen to classical music or binaural beats while learning new material, helping you absorb the content. Perhaps you are a kinaesthetic learner, committing data to memory when moving or using hands-on tools. There are many different learning styles, so it's essential to explore and understand how you best learn.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      What to Avoid

      Rather than giving a cliche or overused response like, 'I am a hands-on learner,' dig deeper and be specific. You are a unique individual, so ensure that your answer stands out from the crowd.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

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  • 21. What was the most difficult decision you have had to make?

      The Goal

      The interviewer wants to know how you weigh your options when facing a difficult decision. The goal of your response is to showcase your strong critical thinking and decision-making skills.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      How to Answer

      Use an example relevant to your work, such as changing majors in university, quitting a job that wasn't healthy for you, selling your business and re-entering the traditional workforce, relocating to a new city for better opportunities, or even starting a new professional venture. Be sure to highlight how you approached the decision and take the interviewer through your critical thinking and decision-making process. You should also include details of how your decision worked out for the best. At the end of your response, remember to connect your critical thinking skills and how they will benefit the hiring company, should you be the successful candidate.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      Pro Tip

      Behavioral-based interview questions like this, where the interviewer is looking for a story example, are best answered using the STAR method. STAR is an acronym for Situation, Task, Action, Result. Organizing your response using this framework will ensure that you provide the interviewer with the right amount of information and detail to form a compelling answer.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      What to Avoid

      One common mistake that interviewees make is to give a highly personal response. This question is not the time to talk about the hardest personal decision you've ever had to make. Be sure to keep your answer career-focused and related to the job opportunity.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

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  • 22. Tell me about a time when you had to collaborate with a co-worker whose personality was the opposite of yours.

      The Goal

      Workplace personality differences will almost always be present, whether you work with a large team or a small one. The interviewer would like to see that you can make the best of any situation, regardless of personality differences. The goal of your response is to spotlight your collaborative qualities and show the interviewer you act professionally irrespective of the personality or behavior of others.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      How to Answer

      Answer this question by giving a story-based example of a time you remained a team player, despite a challenging personality clash with a co-worker. Outline the situation and explain why it was vital that you encouraged collaboration with your co-worker. Focus the bulk of your response on the actions you took to communicate with this individual. If your teamwork yielded an impressive accomplishment, be sure to include this information in your response. Suppose you are newer to your career and do not have a work-related example. In that case, you can use a story-based example from your post-secondary, volunteer, or extra-curricular experience.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      Pro Tip

      Behavioral-based interview questions that begin with 'Tell me about a time...' are best answered using the STAR method. STAR is an acronym for Situation, Task, Action, Result. Organizing your response using this framework will ensure that you provide the interviewer with the right amount of information and detail to form a compelling answer.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      What to Avoid

      Avoid giving extreme responses that include speaking negatively of others. You will also want to avoid blanket statements such as telling the interviewer that you get along with everyone 100% of the time.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

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  • 23. How would you build a relationship with someone who intimidates you?

      The Goal

      The goal of your response is to show the interviewer that you can overcome feelings of intimidation, never allowing them to impact the quality of your work. Also, it's essential to give the interviewer a strong sense of your approach to relationship-building.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      How to Answer

      We have all been in a situation where we find a co-worker, customer, classmate, or professor slightly intimidating. When you answer, clearly show the interviewer that you have the self-awareness needed to recognize when feelings of intimidation arise. One way to communicate this is by telling a brief story of a time you built a relationship with someone who intimidated you at first. You should include specific details of how you developed a relationship with this person. At the end of your response, remember to connect your relationship-building skills to how they will benefit the hiring company, should you be the successful candidate.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      Pro Tip

      Since this question asks 'How would you...' it is acceptable to use a hypothetical story example, giving a general overview of how you would react in this situation. However, if you want to use a real-life example, try forming a response using the STAR method. STAR is an acronym for Situation, Task, Action, Result. Organizing your response using this framework will ensure that you provide the interviewer with the right amount of information and detail to form a compelling answer.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      What to Avoid

      Avoid responses that seem like you have very little agency over your feelings or actions. For instance, avoid statements like, 'When I encounter customers that intimidate me, I just smile and deal with it because it's my job to put the customer first.'

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

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  • 24. Tell me about a time you wish you had handled a workplace situation differently.

      The Goal

      Workplace personality differences will almost always be present, whether you work with a large team or a small one. The interviewer would like to see that you can make the best of any situation, regardless of personality differences. The goal of your response is to spotlight your collaborative qualities. Show the interviewer that you act professionally irrespective of the personality or behaviors of those around you.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      How to Answer

      Most people cannot handle every difficult situation with the utmost grace at all times. No matter who you are, there is undoubtedly a work-related situation that makes you cringe a bit when you look back. Answer this question by giving a story-based example of a time you reacted to a scenario in a way that you typically try to avoid. Outline the situation and describe why you reacted the way you did. Focus the bulk of your response on the actions that you took to repair the situation. Also, include details about the lesson you learned.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      Pro Tip

      Behavioral-based interview questions that begin with 'Tell me about a time...' are best answered using the STAR method. STAR is an acronym for Situation, Task, Action, Result. Organizing your response using this framework will ensure that you provide the interviewer with the right amount of information and detail to form a compelling answer.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      What to Avoid

      The example you give should not be a weighty one but have enough impact to show the interviewer that you can bounce back from a misstep in the workplace. Avoid examples that include a display of immaturity or make it look like you have a temper.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

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  • 25. How would you approach making a good impression on a new client?

      The Goal

      The interviewer wants evidence that you understand the foundations of building positive relationships with your client base or other key stakeholders. The goal of your response is to show the interviewer that you know how to make a lasting impression on clients and add assurance that your approach is the right fit for the hiring company.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      How to Answer

      First impressions are everything, and there are many ways to impact a new client significantly. You can start by being attentive in meetings, researching the company before your initial appointment, and having an enthusiastic attitude towards your clients' goals. When you answer, be sure to give a detailed overview of how you would approach making a good impression on a new client. If you have some work experience, consider telling a brief story of when you built a relationship with a new client. You should include specific details of how you developed a relationship with this person. At the end of your response, remember to connect your client relationship-building skills and how they will benefit the hiring company, should you be the successful candidate.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      Pro Tip

      Since this question begins with 'How would you...' it is acceptable to use a hypothetical story example, giving a general overview of how you would react in this situation. However, if you want to use a real-life example, try forming a response using the STAR method. STAR is an acronym for Situation, Task, Action, Result. Organizing your response using this framework will ensure that you provide the interviewer with the right amount of information and detail to form a compelling answer.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      What to Avoid

      Avoid providing an answer that is too simple such as saying, 'I would approach making a good impression on a new client by being nice to them.' Dig deeper and provide details that show you have a keen sense of what your customers need.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

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  • 26. Tell me about a time that you failed. How did you get back up again?

      The Goal

      The interviewer is looking for evidence that you can bounce back from a disappointing outcome. The goal of your response is not to focus on the failure. Instead, showcase your ability to recover from failure. Your answer should highlight your tenacity, dedication, and drive, even when things don't go as planned.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      How to Answer

      We all fail from time to time, and there is no need to be ashamed of defeat. The magic is in the lessons we learn from these situations. Give an example of an outcome of a project or task that was not what you wanted it to be, but you were able to recover. Perhaps you were better off in the end or learned a valuable lesson. Outline the roadblock, and share how you approached the situation to ensure a good recovery. At the end of your response, discuss your level of dedication, even in the face of failure, and how you will make an impact in this new role.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      Pro Tip

      Behavioral-based interview questions that begin with 'Tell me about a time...' are best answered using the STAR method. STAR is an acronym for Situation, Task, Action, Result. Organizing your response using this framework will ensure that you provide the interviewer with the right amount of information and detail to form a compelling answer.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      What to Avoid

      We have all recovered from a failure to some degree. Avoid responses like, 'I can't think of a specific time when I failed at something, but if this did happen to me, I would work hard to bounce back from the situation.' Being unable to answer a behavioral-based interview question directly will result in appearing unprepared for your interview.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

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  • 27. How do you handle working under very close supervision?

      The Goal

      The interviewer wants to know more about the workplace environment you desire. The goal of your response should be to describe your ideal work environment clearly, and ensure that this job opportunity is a two-way fit.

      Keep in mind, the term 'close supervision' can be code for micromanagement in the workplace. If the interviewer asks a question similar to this in your interview, consider digging deeper to determine how the hiring company interprets the term 'close supervision.'

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      How to Answer

      If possible, give an example of when you worked closely with a boss, professor, or someone in a position of authority. Then, finish your reply by asking what the interviewer means by the term 'close supervision.' Your responsibility is to ensure that the workplace culture aligns well with your own needs as an employee.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      Pro Tip

      Since this question begins with 'How do you...' it is acceptable to use a hypothetical story example, giving a general overview of how you would react in this situation. However, if you want to use a real-life example, try forming a response using the STAR method. STAR is an acronym for Situation, Task, Action, Result. Organizing your response using this framework will ensure that you provide the interviewer with the right amount of information and detail to form a compelling answer.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      What to Avoid

      Avoid giving an answer that casts a negative light on being supervised. Very few people appreciate being micromanaged; however, avoid assuming that the term 'close supervision' means being micromanaged. Ask the interviewer as many questions as you need to gain a full scope of what type of supervision you'll be under in this role.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

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  • 28. How do you handle working with little to no supervision?

      The Goal

      Some roles offer very little supervision, especially when it's a work-from-home or remote opportunity. The interviewer asks if you are an individual who can be productive even when not directly supervised. The goal of your response is to show that you have a history of well-established trust with your past employers. Express that, even without direct supervision, you've remained a top performer in your field.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      How to Answer

      Talk about a time when you were very successful in your work, even when you lacked close supervision from your employer or someone in a position of authority. Then, finish your reply by asking the interviewer to describe the level of supervision in this particular role. It is your responsibility to ensure that the amount of support offered in this position aligns with your own needs. At the end of your response, make a connection between your ability to work independently and how it will benefit the hiring company when they choose to hire you.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      Pro Tip

      Since this question begins with 'How do you...' it is acceptable to use a hypothetical story example, giving a general overview of how you would react in this situation. However, if you want to use a real-life example, try forming a response using the STAR method. STAR is an acronym for Situation, Task, Action, Result. Organizing your response using this framework will ensure that you provide the interviewer with the right amount of information and detail to form a compelling answer.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      What to Avoid

      Avoid agreeing to any work environment - close supervision or little supervision. Be sure to ask the interviewer about the level of management and support provided in this particular role. Make sure it's a good fit for you and that you get the support required to succeed.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

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

      The Goal

      The interviewer would like to know how you respond to failure in the workplace. There will always be a time when you are not happy with your work environment, but your reaction will determine whether or not you can recover from the disappointment. The goal of your response is to show the interviewer that you have the maturity to respond productively in the face of dissatisfaction.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      How to Answer

      Think about a time in the past when you were unsuccessful in your work. Briefly discuss the situation with your interviewer and describe how you reacted. Be sure to include the action steps you took to recover from the situation. Discuss what you learned from the situation at the end of your response. Then, explain how you have applied that lesson to improve the quality of your work.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      Pro Tip

      Since this question begins with 'How do you...' it is acceptable to use a hypothetical story example, giving a general overview of how you would react in this situation. However, if you want to use a real-life example, try forming a response using the STAR method. STAR is an acronym for Situation, Task, Action, Result. Organizing your response using this framework will ensure that you provide the interviewer with the right amount of information and detail to form a compelling answer.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      What to Avoid

      Avoid giving a response that implies you're always 100% satisfied with your work. For instance, saying something like 'I put everything I have into my work, so I am never dissatisfied' can sound overconfident. We all have room to grow, and most interviewers will interpret a reply like that to mean you are not a coachable individual.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

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  • 30. Which statement sounds more like you: 'I hate to lose' or 'I love to win'?

      The Goal

      The interviewer wants to know more about your love of winning and the impact that loss has on you. The goal of your response is to express the fact that you have a healthy competitive side and to show the interviewer that you have the drive to win.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      How to Answer

      Choose which of the two statements sound most like you, and then be prepared to give the interviewer an explanation. For instance, if you hate to lose, you might express to the interviewer that the pain of losing has a more significant impact on you than the love of winning. You could follow up your response by talking about when you failed at something, how it felt, your actions to recover from the loss, and what you learned from the situation.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      Pro Tip

      Technically, there isn't a wrong answer to this question; however, if you're asked this question in a sales interview, it's most likely that you hate to lose more than you love to win. This outcome is based on human nature and how powerful the fear of losing is.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      What to Avoid

      Avoid giving an overly brief response like, 'I hate to lose.' The interviewer wants you to express your preference while also providing insight into what drives you to win.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

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  • 31. Describe a time when you showed initiative at work.

      The Goal

      The interviewer wants evidence that you are the type of person to take the initiative in the workplace. The goal of your response is to show that you are interested in succeeding, growing, and taking on responsibilities beyond your typical work scope.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      How to Answer

      Taking the initiative could mean that you take on responsibilities independently without being asked or continually coached by your manager. It could also mean that you are the type of person who jumps in and assumes the lead before others do or before being asked. Answer this question by telling the interviewer about a specific time when you showed initiative at work. Outline the situation, describe the task, and explain the actions you took to take the initiative. Give as much detail as you can regarding the positive results of your actions. At the end of your response, be sure to describe your high level of initiative and how this characteristic will benefit the company when they choose to hire you.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      Pro Tip

      Behavioral-based interview questions like this, where the interviewer is looking for a story example, are best answered using the STAR method. STAR is an acronym for Situation, Task, Action, Result. Organizing your response using this framework helps you provide an effective story-based response.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

      What to Avoid

      Avoid giving a general answer regarding your initiative. Stay away from vague statements like, 'I always take the initiative in life; it's just who I am.'

      Written by Rachelle Enns on December 14th, 2021

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