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Job Search Tip of the Week #18 (2018)

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How to Ace Your First-Round (or Really, Just About Any) Interview

Think Like an Interviewer – Q12



If I asked your friends to describe you, what would they say?

As one of the most commonly asked interview questions, you’ve probably heard it in some form or another: How would your colleagues describe you? What is your relationship with your coworkers like? If I called your boss right now, what would they say about you? What are three adjectives a former client would use to describe you?

This question is yet another way to evaluate your cultural fit. By hearing more about you through the eyes of others, so to speak, hiring managers hope to determine how people vs. goal-oriented you are and whether you’re able to speak honestly about yourself.

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Job Search Tip of the Week #17 (2018)

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How to Ace Your First-Round (or really, Just about Any) Interview

Think Like an Interviewer – Q11



“Tell me about yourself.”

It’s a four-word request that seems simple enough – after all, who knows knows you better than you? – but it’s perhaps the one inquiry out of the 19 most commonly asked interview questions that can make job seekers sweat the most. Why? Because it’s such a vague request, there are so many places you can take your response – and consequently, so many ways you can go wrong.

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Job Search Tip of the Week #16 (2018)

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How to Ace Your First-Round (or Really, Just About Any) Interview

Think Like an Interviewer – Q10

Forget everything you thought you knew about how to answer the common interview question, “What are your weaknesses?”

Your old standbys “I’m a perfectionist” and “I’m a workaholic” aren’t going to cut it anymore; they’ve lost their magic because interviewers know that job seekers prepare these default answers to use throughout multiple interviews with various companies. Don’t let this question remain a mutually wasted opportunity!

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Job Search Tip of the Week #15 (2018)

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How to Ace Your First-Round (or Really, Just About Any) Interview

Think Like an Interviewer – Q9



Over the last few weeks, we’ve been discussing the reasons behind the most commonly asked interview questions and how to provide answers that address them effectively. This week, let’s take a look at a question intended to gauge your confidence level: “Why should I hire you?”

(If you’re a loyal CareerJuice reader, you may remember closely examining this question with us before. However, keep reading, as this post will serve as both a refresher course and an advanced addendum.)

Opportunities to sell yourself as the valuable asset the company needs can be found in questions such as:

  • Why should I hire you?
  • What can you do for the company?
  • What would you contribute to the company?
  • What do you have to offer the company?
  • How would you add value to the company?
  • Why should you be chosen over other candidates who have equal if not stronger qualifications or more experience?

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Job Search Tip of the Week #14 (2018)

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How to Ace Your First-Round (or Really, Just About Any) Interview

Think Like an Interviewer – Q8

Great Scott! You don’t need a DeLorean time machine to successfully tackle this commonly asked interview question: What do you expect to be doing five years from now?

This question may seem fairly straightforward, but in reality it’s a tricky one to answer – particularly sans DeLorean – because after all, don’t the best laid plans of mice and men oft go awry? So who really knows where they’ll end up in five years?

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Job Search Tip of the Week #13 (2018)

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How to Ace Your First-Round (or Really, Just About Any) Interview

Think Like an Interviewer – Q7



How many quarters would you need to reach the height of the Empire State Building?

Knowing why interviewers ask certain questions can help you know how best to tackle them. This particular one assesses your quantitative reasoning, or your ability to apply basic mathematical skills to draw conclusions and solve problems in a real-world context.

That said, you don’t need to know the exact dimensions of a quarter or the Empire State Building to answer this question the right way. In fact, your interviewer isn’t expecting a precise number. Your interviewer wants to know how you’d think through the problem.

First, break down the question. What are the number of ways you can use quarters? When people hear the second part of the interview question (“to reach the height of the Empire State Building”), most immediately think of stacking quarters on top of one another (Scenario #1), then of lining them up end-to-end (Scenario #2), because that’s how we’ve learned to approximate and measure length. In this instance, very few think of the actual purpose of a quarter, of their 25-cent value (Scenario #3).

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Job Search Tip of the Week #12 (2018)

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How to Ace Your First-Round (or Really, Just About Any) Interview

Think Like an Interviewer – Q6



When you’re hit with a brainteaser like “If you were to get rid of one state in the US, which would it be and why?” at your next interview, don’t sweat it! Interview questions like this are supposed to challenge how you react and think under pressure. Can you think on your feet and stay cool when the heat gets turned on, both in the interview and on the job?

As is the case with most of these crazy oddball questions, your interviewer is far less concerned with your answer and more interested in your approach. The actual state you choose is irrelevant. This particular question is intended to assess your analytical, decision-making, and communication skills. The interviewer wants to see if you’re able to set priorities and make a case for them.

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Job Search Tip of the Week #11 (2018)

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How to Ace Your First-Round (or Really, Just About Any) Interview

Think Like an Interviewer – Q5



Contrary to what the above cartoon suggests, interviewers don’t ask “Why are manhole covers round?” to trip you up – there’s method in their madness, so to speak.

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Job Search Tip of the Week #10 (2018)

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How to Ace Your First-Round (or Really, Just About Any) Interview

Think Like an Interviewer – Q4




How does your family or partner feel about you working long hours?
Work-Life Balance Interview Question
First off, although this is one of the most common interview questions – particularly for IT and technology professionals – it’s also illegal.

As we’ve mentioned before, it’s important as a job seeker to know what your prospective employers shouldn’t ask you. Illegal interview questions solicit information from you that could be used to discriminate against you. In this case, this question makes assumptions about your personal life (specifically, your family/marital status and sexual orientation), and is a “legal landmine” both you and your prospective employer want to avoid. So what do you do when a hiring manager asks you this illegal question?

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Job Search Tip of the Week #9 (2018)

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How to Ace Your First-Round (or Really, Just About Any) Interview

Think Like an Interviewer – Q3




Remember those times when your teachers said, “‘I don’t know’ isn’t a valid answer,” and you rolled your eyes at them? Time to start apologizing, because they were really doing your professional career a favor when they forced you to “at least try.” Employers won’t hire candidates who refuse to strive for solutions (even to silly scenarios like “If you were shrunk to the size of a pencil and put in a blender, how would you get out?”) because they’re afraid of getting it wrong.

They want employees who can think quickly on their feet and use the resources available to them to turn a problem into an opportunity for improvement, because those are the ones who will positively contribute the most to the company’s environment and productivity.

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