Job Interview Questions

Job Interview Questions

The other day I had a adolescent contacting me to train him for his first job interview. His father is a former executive coaching client of mine and referred him to me. The “kid” (23 years old) is actually a very intelligent young potential. He had a Master in Biochemistry and can show a finishing with Cum laude, which means he had very high scores on his finals.


To be honest, he was a very lucky guy, because he got already picked by the company where he got invited to have the job interview while he was still in University. It appears to be a very common practice in our area within certain branches or professions. Now, being picked does not guarantee the job though. Often there is a whole assessment track involved with specialized recruiters to determine his true skills, personality, professional behavior and the likes. I know, because I have been on both sides, being the one interviewed and being the one assessing the potential employees.


Despite his obvious “intellect”, he was lacking the confidence to actual interact with the assessing party. He had already gone trough some prior tests, which where al on paper and now he had the final round where he had a “job interview” with an actual person… Say what? Somebody real, facing you, in person, not virtual reality or on a chat box, messenger or trough a Skype call?? Scary!!!!!

Now, all kidding aside, good recruiters are trained and skilled themselves to identify the actual (soft) skills of the potential employee and they have a bag of tricks up their sleeves to get that information in an off beat manner. I was first going to write a full report on the most common techniques used by the apparently obvious job interview questions as I suddenly remembered a clip on You Tube that more or less covered the basics you should know to be better prepared and far most identify the true purpose of the questions the recruiter generally asks.

 What job interview questions?

Definitely at some point in the conversation, the question “tell me something about yourself” will pop up. What he or she is really looking for is the way you communicate and how skilled you are in doing so. It will show your confidence level, your personality, your passion about certain things and so on.


In the above video, 8 Job interview questions are addressed and some tips are given how to handle them. I would call this definitely a good read or rather watch.

  1. Tell me about yourself?
  2. What are your strengths?
  3. What are your weaknesses?
  4. Where do you see yourself in 5 years? Or what are you long or short time goals?
  5. What do you know about our company?
  6. How do you handle change?
  7. How do you perform under pressure?
  8. How would you handle an important discussion?

Right or wrong?

Again, do not be afraid of giving a wrong answer. Be yourself, be genuine and show passion and motivation above all. If you are trying to get a new job and you can’t show passion nor motivation on day 1, rest assured, they might think of not hiring you. This is not necessarily about your personality, being introvert or extravert, because that is only one aspect of how you assess a good team member or if someone would fit the company profile. But it is better to be prepared and do not get thrown-off by a question you did not expect or giving an answer as you were having a general social conversation, which it is definitely not.

Preparation yes, but don’t make a federal case out of it!

This is, by the way, not really a skill you should master perfectly. Being a master in Job interview questions? I don’t think you are planning a professional career in applying for a job and do job interviews…

Getting back to our young potential I spoke about earlier. He was hired and according to him he scored big time on the ‘what do you know about our company?’ question. As he was super prepared due to the homework I gave him, he even took a look at the stock exchange results as the company was publicly listed and he read the annalists comments and advices and the news excerpts published about the company on different stock exchange platforms. Being interested in Stock exchange and trading himself he liked this info very much — apparently the recruiter was interested in Stock trading as well and they had a nice chat about that, there was a match according to “my” kid. Well, let me assure you, that there could be a chance that the recruiter was genuinely interested in the stock exchange market, but what he for sure now identified are the analytic skills of the candidate he was interviewing and how the candidate potentially can sell something to a project board when he is passionate about it…

Insider tip: When you do research on a company for a job interview, or even as a consultant or sales person, go on to their website and look for “the investor relation” information link. Everything that has to be publicly announced will be there, even, sometimes, future strategies…

Have a conscious day!!