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Star Method of Answering Questions

Past behaviors are the best indications of future behavior- so interviewers often focus on what you did rather than what you would do. An example question is "Tell me about a time when you demonstrated effective problem solving skills."

To effectively answer these questions, follow the STAR Method.


Situation

  • Describe the setting in which your interview response takes place.
  • What were you doing? Who were you working with? What project were you working on?

Task

  • Explain how the situation changed, and how you were expected to address this change.
  • What was the goal you were striving to accomplish or the problem you were trying to solve?

Action

  • Clarify the specific action steps that you took in order to address the task at hand.
  • Demonstrate and mention skills that you utilized in each step.
  • What did you do to resolve the problem or reach the goal?

Result

  • Explain how your actions contribute to the overall end product of the situation.
  • How did the situation end? What did you learn from this experience?

Example:

(Situation) During my role as an Event Planning Intern at Company X this past summer, I managed all of the details and supervised a group of five in order to successfully host certain events.

(Task) After reviewing the company's annual report, attendance at our events had dropped by 30% in the past 3 years, and I wanted to find a solution to this problem.

(Action) First, I collected feedback by sending out a questionnaire to past attendees and partners on ways to improve our events. I gathered this research and used it to design a new, more effective promotional packet using Software B.

(Result) Company X was able to utilize both my solutions and feedback from the community to host even better events. After implementing some of these strategies, we raised attendance to our events by 20% in the first year. I learned that it is essential to continually adapt strategies through marketing and research to increase participation.