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5 Interview Questions You're Likely To Be Asked

Tuesday, June 16, 2015 6:11 am

Everyone wonders what interview questions they will be asked. In today’s job market, that is a great thing! Hiring managers and HR professionals want candidates who are fully prepared and give the best interview possible.

Here are our top five interview questions that are asked in various interview types. However, it is important to note, that all questions are asked differently. By this we mean, “Tell me about yourself” versus “How would you describe yourself to a stranger?”. Two different questions, but both looking for similar answers.

In this article, we will discuss behavioural questions, general questions, testing questions, stressful questions and tricky questions.

Behavioural Interview Question

  • Tell me about a time when something unplanned happened during your day. How did you deal with it?

This kind of question is commonly asked in most interviews regardless of what kind of job. What the interviewer is looking to get out of you is to see if you are an organised person. If you are organised, then most unplanned events should be easy to manage. However, emergencies always come up throughout the day and interviewer will really be seeking your ability to multi-task. Even the most organised person will still have unplanned things occur. They will want to hear how you handled them and then how you will in the future. You should also explain the outcome of the unplanned event and how, because of your diligence, everything turned out successful.

Typical Interview Question

  • How do you handle pressure, conflict and/or stress?

This question, on the surface, seems easy. The answer is always, “Great!”. While that is the correct answer, it couldn’t be more wrong! A big rule of interviewing is NEVER give one word answers. You answer this question by explaining a story. This story is something that has happened to you in the past. “One time, I was under a tight deadline for a huge project. It was due in 5 hours and the team had only 15% of the project complete. Here’s what I did…” The interviewer is not looking for the obvious here, how you handle stress, however they are looking to see how you work under pressure and still produce successful results. They will only understand that if you tell them in detail.

Testing Interview Question

  • What challenges do you think you might expect in this job if you were hired?

This question, unfortunately, catches so many people off-guard. It is easy to say, “I believe the challenges I will face are…. nothing, meeting a sales goal, immediately decreasing ____ project time, learning all software interfaces, etc…” While those are logical answers and make sense, again, they are the wrong answers. When interviewees give answers such as those, they are instantly ruining their chances of landing the job. You would be essentially telling the interviewer everything you would NOT be able to do, thus how you would be the wrong person to hire. Instead, you can give examples such as, “getting to know the whole team, learning all policies and procedures, or red tape”. You should follow up all of your answers, no matter what you say, with how you would overcome those challenges. Again, you have to remember, any and all interviews are about providing solutions. Tell them why they need to hire you and how you can fix their problems.

Stressful Interview Question

  • Are you under/over qualified for this job?

It would seem the obvious answer to this question is, “No”. But as stated above, you never want to give one word answers to any interview question. Instead, take this opportunity to restate why you are the best person for the job. You have to talk about the specific value you would bring to the organisation. This strategy does change a bit depending on if you actually are under or over qualified, but either way, this question is designed to see whether or not you can promote yourself along with convincing the interviewer that they should hire you.

Tricky Interview Question

  • How many jellybeans will fit in a car?

WHAT!? Is this a real question? Yes, it sure is and it is actually one of the more common questions being asked in companies such as Google and Facebook. It is a question that tests your creative thinking abilities as well as your ability to think out of the box. On the surface it really does seem like a dumb question and most candidates will answer, “um, 10,000?”. Then the question and interview is over. This question can be asked many different ways; anything in anything. The right way to answer this question is to ask questions back. You must be inquisitive and challenge what seems to be the status quo. For example, “How big are the jellybeans?”, “Are there seats in the car?”, “Can I put them in the trunk?”, “Does the car have a spare tire?”, “Can they go in the inside of the tires?”. You get the point. The interviewer wants to see will you just accept a project and start working on it with no questions asked… OR… will you question them and fully understand the project you will be working on.

While the information above is generic in its advice, how and what you say at an interview can only be refined once we know your background and the specific job you’re being interviewed for.  Stay alert, be knowledgeable about the pitfalls, and if the opportunity is important to you, get assistance from us to help ace every interview.  Call us on 1300 366 104, or email