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How To Decipher The Meaning Of Interview Questions

The following post is courtesy of the Recruiting Blogswap:

From: Lorraine Russo

Interviewers ask certain questions for a reason. Some good...and some not so good. Like it or not, the same questions are asked just about every day during each and every interview in every company around the country. So if you understand the information an interviewer is trying to obtain from you, answering them will be all the easier.

Many, but not all, human resources personnel and hiring managers are experienced interviewers, so they typically know the “right” and “wrong” answers to questions. They also know what your answers say about YOU, both personally and professionally.

For example, if an interviewer asks you to discuss your strengths and weaknesses, do you know what he or she is looking for in your answer?

While experts disagree on the usefulness of these types of questions, you need to be prepared to respond appropriately. You alone know your true strengths and weaknesses, but the manner in which you answer will determine your fate. The following table shows some of the most commonly asked questions and their “secret” meanings.


What was your class standing?

>>How smart are you?

Which supervisors have you found it easiest or most difficult to work with, and why?

>>Are you adaptable?

Tell me about your extra-curricular activities. Give me an example of a time when you had to do more than what was required in your job. Did you work on any special projects?

>>Do you have initiative?

What hobbies do you have?

>>Are you creative?

Do you ever find that you need to make exceptions to certain rules or policies? Give me an example of when you had to do this, and why.

>>Do you have integrity?

What classes did you start and later drop? What are some of the tougher problems you faced in previous jobs? At what point did you ask for assistance? To whom did you go?

>>Can you persevere in hard times?

In school or in a previous job, how did you convince other people to accept your ideas?

>>How persuasive are you?

Do you consider yourself successful? What makes you think you can sell successfully? How do you feel when you get rejected?

>>Are you self-confident?

Can you give me a recent example of a time when you had to get your point across to different people? What approach did you take? Can you give me an example of a time when you had to convince your manager or co-worker about a new idea?

>>How well can you communicate?

Describe a typical day on your job.

>>Level and complexity of work assignments.

Explain how you fit into your department. To whom did you report?

>>Extent of responsibility.

What other departments did you work with in your previous job? Tell me about those relationships.

>>Organizational cooperation.

How hard or easy is it for you to handle multiple priorities simultaneously? Tell me how you accomplish this.

>>How organized are you?

Once you’ve reviewed these questions and meanings, do a bit of soul searching to decide how you will answer these questions during your interview---AND how your answers will be conveyed on your RESUME. Chances are, at least one or two of your responses may change. Changing your answers, or at least understanding what an interviewer expecting to hear in your answers, will dramatically increase your successes and opportunities in the job market.

Article courtesy of the Recruiting Blogswap, a content exchange service sponsored by CollegeRecruiter.com, a leading site for college students looking for internships and recent graduates searching for entry level jobs and other career opportunities.


Bill Shambrook

Rules for responding:

*Have a clear, concise and succinct answer to the question "Tell me about yourself"! Use it as the hook to take control of the interview.

*Never answer a question until you understand the question-don't guess-ask for clarification as the interviewer will often give you the answer
*Virtually all questions require a two part answer-the first part is the response once you understand the question-the second is tying your answer to how this would help the interviewer's company meet a specific challenge or take advantage of an opportunity
*Do not fear questions concerning perceived liabilities-unless addressed they can become disqualifiers-look upon them as being "buying signs"-preplan your response and have a strategy to address-often the way you address a concern is more important than your response to other questions.

Bill Shambrook


Nothing to worry or get nervous, just be confident and never tell any lie.. answer what you know.. are the first principles while attending an Interview. I had lot of experience in this area, so collected a big list of interview questions and answers sites (more than 220 sites) on wide variety of areas. This doesn't cover just interview questions but also has information related to how to dress, how and what to ask the person who is interviewing you like if it is HR, you might want to know about the work environment, about the overtime rules, about the holiday structure, any medical benefits, insurance coverages etc.,. Thought it will be useful to all, so sharing them at the below link -- might be of some help to you... today and even in future..

Emily | London Jobs

CV acts as a first point of contact. After viewing the CV only the recruiter has a some idea or picture about the candidate abilities. If the CV is perfect there are less chances of the recruiter asking many questions. During his personal interview his communication skills are tested. Candidate must always be confident to market him in this competitive market.

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