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What is your nationality?

Written on July 1st, 2018 | Rachelle is a job search expert, career coach, and headhunter
who helps everyone from students to fortune executives find success in their career.
How to Answer

The interviewer should never ask this question but you can choose to play along or you can opt out of the answer tactfully. Asking a question in return is a very smart way to show the interviewer that the question is entirely inappropriate without having to say so in a point-blank manner.

Here are 2 options:

"I am proud to say that both of my parents are from Iran. They immigrated in 1988 and we have carved successful lives here ever since. I am very proud of my heritage. What is your nationality?"

OR

"Oh wow, I have never been asked that question in an interview. How is this relevant to the position?"

Please note: If you are asked this question, you are within your rights to leave the interview and make an official complaint to the company's HR department or to your local labor standards board. Do not worry about blowing the interview. You do not want to work for such an irresponsible organization.

Professional Answer Examples
General
Answer example

"I am proud to say that both of my parents are from Iran. They immigrated in 1988 and we have carved successful lives here ever since. I am very proud of my heritage. What is your nationality?"

Written by:

Rachelle Enns
Rachelle Enns is a job search expert, executive headhunter, career catalyst, and interview coach. Utilized by top talent from Fortune companies like Microsoft, General Electric, and Nestle, she helps professionals position themselves in today's competitive digital marketplace. Rachelle founded Renovate My Resume and Executive Resume Solutions, two companies focused on helping job seekers get their edge back. She helps everyone from new graduates looking for their first placement, to CEO's who want more out of their career. Rachelle coaches students to executives on how to master the toughest interview questions and how to handle the most bizarre interview situations; all with confidence and poise. Rachelle trains other career coaches, recruiters, and resume writers, globally. A big part of her job is also spent coaching HR professionals on how to bring the human touch back into their interview and hiring process.
Published: 07/01/2018
*Specific career answer examples vary on published date
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