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30 Questions and Answers by Rachelle Enns
Updated August 9th, 2018 | Rachelle is a job search expert, career coach, and headhunter
who helps everyone from students to fortune executives find success in their career.
Job Interviews     Topics    

Question 1 of 30

Are you willing to travel?

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Interview Questions

1.

Are you willing to travel?

There is no right or wrong answer to this question, but you do need to be honest. If the interviewer is asking for travel in this role you should clarify just how much, and what type of travel, will be required of you. Keep your answer brief and ask as many questions as you need until you fully understand the travel requirements.

Rachelle's Answer #1

"I am willing to do some daytime travel as well as some overnights for events and conferences. Could you share with me the travel expectations for this role?"

Rachelle's Answer #2

"My commitments require me to be home on the weekends, and evenings, as often as possible. Before I answer yes or no, could you provide me with further details on any travel required in this role?"

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Anonymous Answer

"Yes, I am willing to travel. Can you share with me the travel expectations for this role?"

Alexandra's Answer

Good answer.

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Anonymous Answer

"I have traveled for work in the past, and I am open to travel again."

Rachelle's Answer

Alright, good! If you have traveled for work in the past...with which role? How often? Where? Overnight or daytime? International or local? The more information you can provide, the less the interviewer will have to carry the conversation.

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2.

How many years experience do you have in your field?

The interviewer is trying to quickly gauge if you are qualified for this role, or not. If they have called you, chances are - you have something on your resume that they like. Most job postings will specify the number of years of experience that the employer is looking for but it's often a flexible number.

Let's say the interviewer is looking for five years experience in a specific field or skill, and you have 15 years. Avoid being labeled as overqualified by saying: "I have more than five years' experience in your direct field. My most recent position was similar to this role, and I was a top performer for the entire seven years of my employment there. I am eager to continue my path of success with your company."

Rachelle's Answer #1

"I have more than five years' experience in your direct field. My most recent position was similar to this role, and I was a top performer for the entire seven years of my employment there. I am eager to continue my path of success with your company."

Rachelle's Answer #2

"I have been working in an administrative position for approximately four years. I also spent a great deal of time helping my dad with his bookkeeping business as a teen. I was exposed to organizing files, making appointments, and double checking the details of his work before he passed it back to his clients."

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Anonymous Answer

"I have five years of experience."

Lauren's Answer

Great. Be ready to answer follow-up questions. See below.

"In an interview, you may be asked the following question. It would be helpful to think about your response in preparation for an interview. “What is your greatest accomplishment thus far in your five years as an Engineer?”"

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Anonymous Answer

"I have over seven years of experience. Although I have a lot of experience, I am willing to learn new opportunities."

Rachelle's Answer

Rather than finishing your answer with a willingness to learn, try focusing on the expertise that you have already gained in these 7 years. How will you add to the employer vs. take from their resources? I have offered a starter, below.

"I have seven years of experience in the field of (name your industry). Through these seven years, I have gained strong skills in (list your areas of expertise). I am eager to take this experience and knowledge and apply it to this role by (what action steps will you take to make a difference for the hiring company?)."

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3.

How do you feel this position would fit in with your long term career goals?

Before applying for any position, it’s best to have an idea of your long-term career goals, and a great sense of the potential growth the hiring company offers. This way, you can highlight for the interviewer all of the great reasons why this position will fit into your long-term goals!

Maybe you hope to be in a management position with them down the road! Whatever your reasons, be sure to provide a response that allows the interviewer to see your desire to stay with them long term.

Rachelle's Answer #1

"I feel that this position fits in well with my long-term career goals because it provides the project management piece that I have been missing. I would love to become great in this role and then earn a promotion to a leadership position where I can mentor other project managers."

Rachelle's Answer #2

"My primary career goal is to find a position where I can stay long term. Because your company has such a strong reputation for workplace culture, it fits perfectly with my desires for a long-term fit."

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Anonymous Answer

"I feel that this position would fit my long term career goals because prospective students and families are always on social media, and it is a big way for schools to recruit new students. Today, there are many relationships that are built over social media, and it is a great way to instantly reach out to students. The number of applications received or students accepting, is a great way to determine whether that specific strategy is working."

Alexandra's Answer

Be sure to define your long-term career goal. I'm inferring from this & your other questions that it's to be in social media, but it would be good to state that here.

"My long-term career goal is to get into social media marketing. I feel this position is a good start because a lot of relationship-building and recruiting is done through social media. Social media is a great way to reach out to students instantly. Additionally, by learning what draws students to apply and attend this university, I can apply that information to a future role in social media marketing for this university if the opportunity arises."

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4.

What are the top duties in your current position?

A great way to prepare for your interview is to reflect on the main tasks in your current position and how that experience would make you a strong candidate for the job for which you are applying. The interviewer wants to know if you have the knowledge and skills required to be successful in this position. Make sure you are familiar with the job description before your interview! You will want to draw on that valuable information.

Rachelle's Answer #1

"The top duties in my current position are to deliver exceptional customer service, attempt to upsell every existing client at every touch point, and conduct 50 outbound cold calls per week. I understand that the primary skills you are seeking are in cold calling, up-selling, and customer service. I see a great match between my current job duties and this particular position."

Rachelle's Answer #2

"In my current role, being a solid organizer is the name of the game. I am the administrative support for the VP and President of the company. My day includes arranging their schedules, booking their travel, ordering lunch for meetings, and more. I do it all!"

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Anonymous Answer

"Currently, my primary duties as an Implementation Team Leader and Network Engineer, I provide solutions-based customer service. I mostly handle Cisco devices (wireless, switch, router, and ASA), as well as Fortigate and Riverbed. There are many transferable skills I can bring to this position at Qatar Airways."

Lauren's Answer

Fantastic response!

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Anonymous Answer

"The top duties in my last position are analyzing and resolving complicated patient accounts, communications regarding patient accounts with various payers, collection accounts review, and refund processing."

Rachelle's Answer

This is an excellent answer, showing the interviewer all the responsibilities you could take care of in this new role.

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5.

After reviewing our job description, are there any required skills listed that you feel you are lacking?

This question can be tough to navigate! As a potential candidate, it can be challenging to show weakness for fear the company will lose interest. When you answer this question about a skill that you feel you are lacking, explain how you plan to become stronger in that skill.

Rachelle's Answer #1

"I feel I'm not as well versed in Photoshop as I would like to be, but I found some YouTube tutorials and books that can help me with this skill."

Rachelle's Answer #2

"I am very excited about the job description and feel my qualifications align with the type of candidate for which you are seeking. I could have stronger skills in Excel; however, I am more than happy to enroll myself in a course immediately."

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Anonymous Answer

"I feel that I am not well versed in analyzing documents that would assess the effectiveness of recruitment. However, I have been strengthing this skill by researching analytics online and reading the best ways to analyze."

Alexandra's Answer

Great answer! This shows that you are self-aware, but you are willing to learn.

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Anonymous Answer

"I have read through the job description and feel that I have a lot of the requirements; however, I haven't done recruitment before."

Rachelle's Answer

If recruitment is one area you know you fall short, take the time to research a bit about how Gucci recruits, showing that you have an invested interest in learning. I have provided an example below.

"The job description mentioned recruitment efforts, which I understand Gucci takes on through a variety of online job ads, a robust employee referral program, and the use of third-party recruitment agencies. I am happy to learn more about your selection progress, and how to properly read a resume and interview candidates."

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6.

Where did you find our job posting?

The employer would like to know what methods and resources you are using in your job search so they can determine which of their advertising methods is working best. You can expand your answer to include any other exposure you have had to the company.

Rachelle's Answer #1

"I initially saw your job posting on LinkedIn. However, I have been exposed to your organization many times before through your radio commercials and advertisements on Facebook."

Rachelle's Answer #2

"I've been looking at job postings on Indeed, so I believe this is where I found your job posting."

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Anonymous Answer

"I found the listing on your corporate website Idexx.com."

Rachelle's Answer

Good! What made you look at Idexx's careers site to begin with? Do you often keep an eye out for their job opportunities?

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Anonymous Answer

"I sometimes scan your website for press releases and to monitor the company stock value. I usually check the career site at that time, and that is when I saw this job posting."

Rachelle's Answer

Great! This data is always helpful for companies to know which of their efforts are working the best.

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7.

Describe a typical work day in your current role.

When you walk the interviewer through a typical workday, you are allowing them to visualize you in their position. From your answer, the interviewer will also be able to gauge if your activities match the seniority level of this position. If they are calling you for a junior role, for instance, and you let them know that you currently manage a team of 20 people, they will likely conclude that you are overqualified for the position. If you have a job description in front of you, do your best to match the list of role responsibilities with the day-to-day activities in your current, or most recent, position. Keep your answer as brief as possible. With open-ended questions like this one, it is easy to begin rambling.

Rachelle's Answer #1

"A typical work day for me includes managing a team of three junior accountants. I oversee their work and review the incoming financials. Most of the day is spent on data analysis, coaching, and reporting. I also spend some phone time with clients who may have questions regarding their monthly invoices. I see the list of responsibilities in your job posting and can confidently say that I perform most of these tasks on a weekly basis, and some of them, daily."

Rachelle's Answer #2

"My average work day includes answering about 150 calls per day, 200 emails, and greeting over 300 people who visit our office in person. We are busy, yet highly efficient. When I am not performing customer-facing tasks, I am confirming appointments for the executive team and making their travel plans and schedules for the upcoming week. I believe these responsibilities align very nicely with the needs of your role."

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Anonymous Answer

"A typical day at work for me involves multiple calls to existing and new landlords negotiating business points on lease extensions and communicating those business points to internal and external counsel for drafting. Writing business support documents, and completing financial models outlining new and renewal lease terms, presenting deal terms to executive management to obtain internal approvals, meeting with the general manager of the market to discuss individual deal strategy and big picture strategy for development. Coaching junior members and new hires on the team on negotiating strategies as well as edit and correcting their work as needed."

Rachelle's Answer

You have a lot of responsibilities! If there are tasks that overlap between your current role, and the one you are interviewing for, be sure to highlight those points (transferable skills count, too!).

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8.

What would you change about your current role, if you could?

Be sure when you respond to this question that you do not want to change aspects of your current position that are also the primary duties in the role for which you are applying. If you do this, the employer might think you are not that interested in the position and its functions. Keep your answer brief and avoid any negativity!

Rachelle's Answer #1

"I like a lot of things about my current role; however, if I could change one thing I would have my position be responsible for more graphic design and marketing material creation. I noticed one of the main duties of this position involves graphic design which is very exciting!"

Rachelle's Answer #2

"I would not change anything about my current role because I believe there are lessons everywhere in situations. As I evolve in my admin role, I would like to see it make more of an impact on the organization's bottom line. I believe that proper organization can save a company thousands of dollars in time and error avoidance, but my current company has yet to see that connection."

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Anonymous Answer

"I am currently unemployed, but I loved my previous internship. However, if I could change one thing, I would be responsible for more social media aspects."

Alexandra's Answer

Good answer.

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9.

Are you actively interviewing with other companies? Are you close to offer stage with anyone?

The interviewer wants to gauge better if their hiring timeline fits with your current schedule. Your answer will determine if they continue to engage with you, based on their timing and needs.

If you are actively interviewing: "Yes, I am very active in my search and have had multiple invitations to interview. Currently, I am in the second interview stage with one company and third interview stage with another."

If you are not interviewing with other companies: "I just started my search, so I am not in final interviews with any other company. I am aggressively seeking, however."

Rachelle's Answer #1

"Yes, I am very active in my search and have had multiple invitations to interview. Currently, I am in the second interview stage with one company and third interview stage with another."

Rachelle's Answer #2

"I am currently exploring opportunities with other organizations or similar roles. At this time, I am not at the offer stage but will keep you apprised should that change."

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Anonymous Answer

"I am currently in the first stage with another company, and I am aggressively searching as well."

Rachelle's Answer

This would be a great opportunity to ask the interviewer what their hiring timeline looks like, as well as confirm why you are interested in this particular role. I have provided an example below.

"I am currently in the first stage of interviews with another company and am aggressively looking for a new opportunity. Could you share with me your hiring timeline for this role? I am very keen on this opportunity because (give your reasoning)."

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Anonymous Answer

"Yes, I am actively interviewing with one other company. I have an interview with them this week."

Alexandra's Answer

Good answer.

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10.

Why did you apply for this position?

Now is the time for you to express your enthusiasm for the company, and the position to which you applied! Express your passion for your field of study or talk about how this role will provide you with the career growth you have been seeking. Be sure to compliment the company and give a strong reason why you want to work for them.

Rachelle's Answer #1

"I applied for this position because I am seeking a more challenging opportunity in my field. Your job posting was especially exciting to me because your organization is well known for its unmatched level of professionalism and growth opportunities. I would be thrilled to work for your company."

Rachelle's Answer #2

"Your organization is a leading player in the e-commerce space. I am an advocate of your platform and frequent shopper of your products. I think I can add a lot of value to this role and am excited to learn more about this online customer support opportunity."

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Anonymous Answer

"I was delighted to see this opportunity with Qatar Airways. I have been looking for an overseas company where I can meet new people. This is an excellent opportunity that I sincerely hope I am considered for."

Lauren's Answer

This is a great and honest answer.

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Anonymous Answer

"I want to work for a company that has a global brand but still in a growth stage."

Rachelle's Answer

This is a good start, but I recommend digging deeper as this answer could be applied to many different companies. What are the top reasons that are unique to this company? What truly stood out to you in the job posting when you first saw it?

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11.

All of our candidates must pass a criminal record check and education verification. Is there any reason why you would not be comfortable with this?

Background checks are widespread in many industries. If you are keen for the position, you much comply fully with their onboarding process. Show that you are cooperative. If there are any marks in your history, this is the exact time to disclose them.

Rachelle's Answer #1

"Yes, I am happy to comply with any background checks required. My record is clean."

Rachelle's Answer #2

"That is a great step in the process, and there will be no issues with me participating in this. I am happy to provide any supporting documents to help along the way."

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Anonymous Answer

"Your welcome to conduct a background check and education verification on me."

Rachelle's Answer

Great! As per previous feedback, be sure to add in a short sentence re-affirming the interviewer. I have offered an example, below.

"You're welcome to conduct a background check and education verification on me. You will find that my background is clean, and my educational background is consistent with what I have provided on my resume."

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Anonymous Answer

"Yes, I am comfortable with any background checks required."

Alexandra's Answer

Good answer.

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12.

Briefly walk me through your work history. Please include why you left each position listed on your resume.

Briefly describe your work history, starting at the least recent position. Be brief and decisive, outlining one or two main achievements in each role. Be sure to include why you left each job while maintaining a positive tone. Avoid complaining about any past jobs or previous employers.

Rachelle's Answer #1

"I began my career, right out of university, with ABC Company. Spending four years there, I was able to triple my portfolio and quickly promoted to sales manager. I left that company in 2009 after being headhunted into a more lucrative role with XYZ Company. I have been with XYZ ever since!"

Rachelle's Answer #2

"I am a recent graduate of the Business Administration program with ABC University. I completed my practicum in an administration role within an Accounts Payable department. This experience was a wonderful one for me and a big reason why I was prompted to apply for your A/P clerk position. I come with some solid references and the eagerness to start a great career."

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Anonymous Answer

"During my undergrad, I had completed three internships. One was at the Ohio State House of Representatives because I wanted to be in politics. Even though I loved my time there, I knew politics was a career I did not want to pursue. My other two internships were in the field of public relations. Through both, I was able to improve my communication skills, writing skills, editing skills, and independence. I left each position because the internship had ended."

Alexandra's Answer

Good answer! I would consider adding some responsibilities you held in each position and/or the impact you made in each position.

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13.

I'm interested in knowing more about the type of work you are seeking, and your ideal workplace culture. What is your ideal position at this time?

The type of culture you are looking for will vary based on your field and personality. However, every candidate is looking for a positive work environment and growth opportunities, so be sure to stress these aspects in your response. In regards to the position, think of three traits that get you excited about your ideal job. What work elements evoke happiness? Be sure to demonstrate to the interviewer how excited you are about this position.

Rachelle's Answer #1

"Ideally, I am seeking a role that offers a positive work environment with room for growth through challenging projects and continued training. I work best in a positive team environment where employees are respected and given some form of autonomy."

Rachelle's Answer #2

"I am looking for a role to which I can contribute value. An organization with a culture where administrative associates feel valued and appreciated. I'm passionate about working within a culture where people are recognized, ideas are celebrated, and innovation is happening all around you."

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Anonymous Answer

"My current workplace is one that is fast-paced that also has resources to train and reward success. My dream team is one that is communicative and supportive. I am looking for a manager/team that will provide consistent feedback and push me to grow with the team. I am looking for a team that lets me express my creative problem-solving skills. And hopefully low-ego salespeople."

Rachelle's Answer

This answer is fantastic! You offer up some great detail here, and enough that the hiring authorities will know if this role is a good workplace culture fit.

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Anonymous Answer

"My ideal workplace is somewhere that challenges me, allows for growth, and just somewhere I look forward to being day in and out."

Rachelle's Answer

This answer is pretty general and could fit in a variety of situations with a variety of companies. How does this interviewing company, specifically them, fit into your ideal workplace? Answering this question well will require research into their core values, mission, and culture.

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14.

When would you be available to start?

Before your interview, make sure you have a start date in mind for the new employer. You may need to give two weeks to your previous position. If you are unemployed, perhaps you can start right away. In either situation, be prepared with an affirmative answer.

If you are currently working, you should always show professionalism by offering two weeks' notice to your current employer. No hiring manager is ever impressed when they hear 'I can quit my job today and start tomorrow!' Show that you are professional and reliable in all situations.

Rachelle's Answer #1

"I am currently unemployed and am willing to start as soon as needed."

Rachelle's Answer #2

"Could you share with me your ideal start date? I am happy to be flexible. However, I will need to give at least two weeks' notice to my current employer."

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Anonymous Answer

"I'd be available soon enough cause right now I already resigned from my last company."

Lauren's Answer

No need to disclose your resignation.

"I am available to start as soon as possible."

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Anonymous Answer

"As soon as possible, as I currently do not have a job."

Rachelle's Answer

Try to finish up your response with a statement of interest so that it does not sound like you will take the first gig that comes along.

"I am available to start immediately. I am currently unemployed and eager to join the Gucci team."

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15.

Tell me one valuable skill that you are currently working on.

The interviewer wants to see that you are the type of employee dedicated to professional growth. Give an example of a skill that you wish to develop. Bonus points if you can tie that skill in with a talent mentioned in the job posting!

Rachelle's Answer #1

"One skill that I am currently working on is my level of proficiency in Excel. I recently tested as an Intermediate user and would like to become an advanced level user. I have enrolled in a 6-day course at the local college which begins tomorrow. I see that your job posting asks for strong Excel skills. I am confident that I can meet those expectations, and even exceed them, once my course is complete."

Rachelle's Answer #2

"That is a great question! I am currently working on developing my ability to influence without direct authority. I have an executive coach that is helping me do this through mentorship programs and peer practice groups."

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Anonymous Answer

"I'm currantly starting to learn more about cloud technology and also Project management."

Lauren's Answer

Great response. I assisted with grammatical edits.

"I am currently learning more about cloud technology and ways to expand my Program Management knowledge."

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Anonymous Answer

"I have been working on improving myself as a social leader and trying to connect the team to create a sense of belonging. I focus on humility and kindness. I have participated in a kindness challenge. I have also focused on bringing a volunteering program back to our company."

Rachelle's Answer

Can you dig into the kindness challenge? It sounds interesting and could be another factor that sets you apart from competing candidates.

"I have been working on improving my skills as a social leader. This month, I have taken on the 30-Day Kindness Challenge which is a movement of kindness in the workplace. Each day, I perform one small act of kindness or generosity for someone on my team. I am learning to better connect with my team while creating a sense of belonging for all."

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