How to Prepare for an Interview? Important Interview Questions with Detailed Explanation

How to Prepare for an Interview?

Important Interview Questions with Detailed Explanation

Practicing your responses to common interview questions, without learning them parrot-fashion, is a really good way to boost your confidence and make sure you are ready for your meeting.

You’d be surprised at how many people think they can just turn up to an interview and be able to do well. Whatever job you are going for, one of the keys to a successful interview performance is preparation. Preparing for an interview can take a bit of time and effort, but if it’s a position you genuinely want, you should look on it as a worthwhile investment.

There are a number of areas you need to focus on when you’re preparing for an interview. Here are some of the key things you need to look at.

How to Prepare for an Interview

Information gathering

The first part of you preparation is making sure you have all the details you need about your interview. What kind of interview will it be, and what kind of questions are you going to be facing? Do you have all the information about the position you’ve applied for? You’ll need this to make sure the rest of your preparation is focused on the right areas.

Do your research

Now you need to look at doing a bit of research, to find out more about the business and the people you are going to see. How much time you spend on it will no doubt be decided by the type, and level of job you are going for. If it’s the position you’ve always dreamed of, and a huge step up for your career, there really is no such thing as too much research.

Get ready to sell yourself

When you’ve got a better understanding of the company and people you are going to meet, as well as the position you will be interviewed for, and the skills you will need, it’s time to start building a compelling argument for why you’re the best applicant for the job. To do this, there are a few key things you need to study. You are going to need to think about why you want to work for the company you’re meeting, and what you have to offer them over all the other candidates.


Once you’ve gathered all the information you need, and determined what experience you have that shows you have the necessary skills for the job, you now need to practice your interview performance, and finalize your preparations. A friend or family fellow can play the role of the interviewer, or just practice in front of the mirror – it’s significant to get used to speaking about your skills and experience.


Final preparation

You should be just about ready for your interview now. All that’s left are the last few things one must do, to make sure that you are fully prepared. You’ll need to dress suitably and try to get it all prepared the night before the interview. Know where you’re going and allow yourself plenty of time to get there – you don’t want to be late.

One of the biggest fears most people have about job interviews is giving the wrong answer to any of the questions they get asked – or worse still, not having an answer at all. While interview success is about a lot more than just learning the answers to the most common interview questions, it can help to understand the kind of questions you might be asked, and what the interviewer is trying to find out, so you can work out the best way to answer them.


Spending a bit of time going over your answers to some of the questions you might be asked in your interview is definitely a good idea. It’s a great way to make sure you know exactly what you want to say and will help you be more confident in your meeting.

Most candidates get a huge boost from practicing their answers to common interview questions – it makes you realize just how much you have to offer, and why they should be offering you the job. If you’re nervous, practice answering a few questions in front of the mirror. If you can get a friend or a relative to play the part of the interviewer, that’s even better. They might not know anything about the job or the company you are being interviewed for, but they will be able to give you some really useful feedback on what you say, and how you say it.

Here are some of the most frequently and common interview questions, as well as a better explanation of each of them, to help you come up with the right answer for your particular situation.


1.   What’s your greatest strength?

Most people aren’t too keen on self-promotion, so this is an opportunity for the interviewer to see how comfortable you are answering the question, and how well you express yourself – so make sure you answer the question confidently, and you have a good example of when you demonstrated this strength, in case they ask for one. Try and focus on one of your strengths that is relevant to the position you’ve applied for.


2.   What’s your biggest weakness?

Interviewers ask this question, to, first of all, see how you react, and then what kind of answer you give. The best way to answer is often to highlight a weakness that you’ve identified and have corrected, or are in the process of improving. Nobody’s perfect, so talking about areas where you need development shouldn’t worry you, as long as it’s something you are aware of, and doing something about.


3.   Why do you want this job?

This is going to tell the interviewer about your motivation for applying for the position, as well as how much you’ve thought about the job you’ll be doing. Try to focus on reasons which are specific to the job you’ll be doing, and the company you’ll be working for. Whatever your motivation, you need to show the interviewer that you have a genuine interest in the position.


4.   Why should we hire you?

This is really two questions wrapped up in one. Firstly, the interviewer is asking why you think you’re right for this position – so you need to highlight the specific skills that would benefit the company. Secondly, they’re asking what you feel you might offer over any of the other candidates. Focus on your individual skills, and any experience that might be unique.


5.   What 3 words would your boss/colleagues use to describe you?

This is another way of asking what soft skills you think you have that make you the best candidate for this job, as well as telling the interviewer a little bit about what you’d be like to work with. Be genuine and think about what your boss/colleagues might say, but always try to make it skills and characteristics that will be of benefit to your new employer.


6.   Tell me about the last time you were unsuccessful in your job and how you dealt with it?

Interviewers appreciate that nobody is perfect. They’re less bothered about the specific reason you were unsuccessful and more interested in how you dealt with the failure, what you’ve learned from it, and what you did better/differently next time. Choose an example that you have indeed learned from, and have an example of when the same situation came up again and you applied what you’d learned, this time you were successful.

Once you have a better understanding of the questions an interviewer is likely to ask, and what information they’re looking for, you should be in a much better position to tell them what they want to hear. Insider Secrets to Interview Success looks at these and a number of other interview questions in more detail, as well as providing all the training and advice you need to make sure you have the right answer, every time.

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