Common Interview Questions

Congratulations on making it this far! You meticulously drafted and edited your resume and that resume got you considered by an employer. Now you have an interview penciled into your schedule. How should you prepare? U.S. News compiles popular interview questions to help you study up for your big day:

  1. Tell me about yourself.

    Prepare a one-minute answer that summarizes where you are currently in your career and what your specialty is in the frame of reference of your current or most recent job. No mentionings of family, hobbies, or personal matters.
  2. What interests you about this position?

    Focus on the duties and responsibilities of the position. Focus on the work itself. Avoid talking about benefits, short commutes, salary, etc…
  3. Why are you considering leaving your current job? Why did you leave your last job?

    Avoid talking about workplace conflicts, complaining about the work or insulting employers. You can use reasons such as: a planned move, financial instability at the company or other reasons that are true. If you answer with wanting new challenges, cite how this new position will open you to new challenges in ways that your current/past position didn't.
  4. Why would you excel in this position?

    This question gets to the point of the interview. It's time for you to shine. Elaborate on how your specific skill sets and experience in the field set you up for success for this position.
  5. What do you know about our company so far?

    Make sure you do your homework! Be sure to do your own share of research on the company. How does the company stand out against competition? Has this company been in the news recently?
  6. Tell me about a time when _____.

    The blank could be filled with a certain challenge or how you had to exercise a certain skill required for the job. Prepare for this question so you're not struggling to ask it in the interview. Do some reflection on challenges, or tasks that required you to think beyond the normal protocol.
  7. What would you do in the first 90 days in this position?

    The interviewer uses this question to assess how you set goals and create solutions. They are looking for ambition with a good dose of sensibility. Acknowledge that you'll need time to get to know your team and the department before you can really hone in on decisions.
  8. What's important to you in a new position?

    Interviewers want to learn more about your career goals and whether this position aligns with it. Are you looking for a position that's highly collaborative and social, or a position that relies on independence? Answer this truthfully so you can land the position that will satisfy you most.
  9. What salary range are you looking for?

    Research the market rate for the job ahead of time. Look at the median salary within the company region. Failure to be prepared to answer this question can result in acquiring a salary lower than what you might have received otherwise.
  10. What questions do you have for me?

    Ask questions that will help you better understand the company culture and ethos. Also ask for more clarity on the position if necessary. Inquire about the next steps in the hiring process and the employer's timeline for getting back to you.


Interviewing Tips