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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.
Question 1 of 30
What are the top duties in your current position?
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How to Answer
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.
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Top 30 Telephone Interview Questions with Full Content
1.
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!"
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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2.
What do you know about this position?
When the interviewer asks this question, they are trying to gauge how prepared you are, and your level of interest in the position. An employer wants to know you are enthusiastic about their organization. Express how keen you are by doing your research on the company history, values, goals, competition, and by examining their culture and what makes them unique. To impress the interviewer, pay particular attention to their blogs, events, and social media profiles for unique information that inspires you to work for them.

Rachelle's Answer #1
"I did some research on your organization, and I think it's inspirational that this company started 80 years ago as a mom and pop operation. I understand you now have fifty locations, which is impressive growth. Also, I took a look at your blog and saw a posting about the trees you planted on Earth Day. I'm very passionate about the environment as well. As for the position, I like how the Marketing role is so diverse. The job posting said the incumbent would be working on presentations for clients, graphic design needs, writing copy for various elements, and data entry/admin tasks. I bring strong experience in all of these elements."
Rachelle's Answer #2
"You are the leader in your industry for delivering value to clients in professional services. This role supports the corporate team and their financial planning groups with people development and product training. Is there anything important that you would like to add?"
Anonymous Answer
"Providence is the largest healthcare system in Oregon, and it provides the best care and service to every person, every time. This also reflects your department has been providing great supporting service! During my ten years at my last job, I was able to demonstrate and learn the specific tasks required for your open position. I am confident that I could be a great addition to your team."
Rachelle's Answer
Excellent! You have done your research on the employer while also tying in the tasks that you are well trained to perform.
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Anonymous Answer
"I know that you are an industry giant, as well as the longest-running in the space. This supportive role mainly focuses on insightful reporting and ad-hoc analysis to realize stakeholders' needs, particularly risk assessment."
Rachelle's Answer
Great! It looks like you took some important keywords from the company job description to show that you understand what would be required of you in this role.
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3.
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."
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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4.
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."
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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5.
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."
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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6.
What is the most important thing you are looking for in your next company?
The interviewer wants to make sure they can offer what you are looking for in your next position. Discuss with the interviewer the things you are missing in your current role. You can also talk about what aspects of this particular company excite you.

Rachelle's Answer #1
"The most important thing for me is to continue growing my knowledge in this industry. I am currently not receiving the opportunity for training and growth which has created an element of stagnancy in my current role. What excites me about your organization is that you have continued education programs and tuition reimbursement for pre-approved courses. The fact that you invest in the growth of your employees is amazing."
Rachelle's Answer #2
"One of the most important things I am looking for in a company is an organization that values its associate's growth. Companies that are offering internal training and development programs for advancement are appealing. For instance, I am interested in taking more technical writing courses and would love to land with an employer who sees value in that."
Anonymous Answer
"Honest, open culture. No talking behind someone's back. And the ability to grow and develop myself so that I could also learn from my senior peers."
Rachelle's Answer
I recommend personalizing your response to Gucci so the interviewer can picture you specifically in their role.
"When I join Gucci, I would like to gain knowledge from my senior team, while enjoying a collaborative and honest culture. It's important to me that everyone works cohesively, ready to help each other."
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Anonymous Answer
"What the most important things I'm looking in my future company are better management and a clear task."
Lauren's Answer
Good response. There is a way not to elude to your previous negative experience, but rather look toward a more idyllic environment.
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7.
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."
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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8.
What is your long-range career objective?
Onboarding new employees is a time consuming and costly endeavor, so the interviewer wants to make sure that this role will be a long-term fit for you. Be open to the interviewer about your dreams within this company, on a long-term basis. Share what promotions you hope to eventually receive and discuss what you wish to learn from being a part of their organization. The key to answering this question is to express to the interviewer that you plan to stay with the company for many years to come.

Rachelle's Answer #1
"While visiting your company website I noticed that you have some leadership opportunities available in a variety of locations. I would love to work my way into a management or leadership role with your organization and would be willing to relocate to do so. I like what your organization stands for, and I hope to see a current fit, and future growth, here."
Rachelle's Answer #2
"That is a great question! I see myself leading a small office team of like-minded and passionate individuals who enjoy the work we are accomplishing together. I also see myself working closely with a charity, on behalf of the organization, to give back to the community."
Anonymous Answer
"My long range career goal is to elevate myself to a manager position and supervise a staff."
Lauren's Answer
This is a great goal.
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Anonymous Answer
"My long-range career objective is to work in social media marketing. The last time I talked with you, the admissions office did not have a specific social media group. If that is still the case, I would love to help and work with them."
Alexandra's Answer
Interesting answer! I would consider trying to connect this to the position you're applying for - how would working in this position lead you to reach that long-term career goal?
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9.
Why are you looking for a new position?
When an interviewer asks you this, make sure you always keep your answer positive. If you are leaving your position because you don't like your boss, be sure to phrase it more eloquently. If you aren't sure how to reply, remember - it's always a safe bet to focus your answer on career growth and exciting opportunities.

Rachelle's Answer #1
"I value growth! It's important to me that I grow in my career so I can continue to be a valuable asset to the company for which I am working. I've noticed tremendous growth in your company the past year, and that appeals to me."
Rachelle's Answer #2
"Career growth and professional development are driving me to seek a new position. As wonderful as my organization has been to me, I do not see an opportunity for upward growth. When I saw your posting for an executive assistant supporting the C-suite, I knew I had to apply."
Anonymous Answer
"I am looking for a new position because I want to grow in my career, so I can continue being a valuable asset to the company I am working for. Ohio University has grown so much since my first year, and I want to be a part of that growth in the future."
Alexandra's Answer
This answer to me communicates why you are looking for a position at Ohio University. However, I think your response should address why you are leaving your old position. If you just graduated, that would be your answer (that you are just now entering the workforce).
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10.
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."
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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