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Job Search Skills: Sample Questions

In addition to behavioral questions you will be asked many different kinds of open ended questions during a job interview. It is important to remember to answer these questions with specific examples so you don't just answer the question but give the recruiter some good, solid examples to support what you say. Listed below are some typical open ended interview questions.

Questions Asked by Employers

Personal
  1. Tell me about yourself.
  2. What do you consider to be your greatest strengths and weaknesses?
  3. Of which three accomplishments are you most proud?
  4. Why should we hire you rather than another candidate?
  5. Where do you want to be in five years? Ten years?
Education
  1. Why did you choose your major?
  2. In which campus activities did you participate?
  3. Which classes in your major did you like best? Least? Why?
  4. If you were to start over, what would you change about your education?
  5. Do your grades accurately reflect your ability? Why or why not?
Experience
  1. What did you learn from your work experiences?
  2. What did you enjoy most about your last employment? Least?
  3. Have you ever quit a job? Why?
  4. Have you ever done any volunteer work? What kind?
  5. How do you think a former supervisor would describe your work?
Career Goals
  1. Do you prefer to work under supervision or on your own?
  2. What kind of boss do you prefer?
  3. What other types of positions are you considering?
  4. How do you feel about working in a structured environment?
  5. Are you able to work on several assignments at once?

Questions to Ask Employers

Be sure to research the organization and the position before the interview so your questions reflect your research.

  1. What kinds of assignments might I expect the first six months on the job?
  2. Have you cut your staff in the last three years?
  3. How do you feel about creativity and individuality?
  4. In what ways is a career with your company better than one with your competitors?
  5. Is this a new position or am I replacing someone?
  6. What is the largest single problem facing your staff (department) now?
  7. What do you like best about your job/company?
  8. What characteristics do the achievers in this company seem to share?
  9. Is there a lot of team/project work?
  10. Will I have the opportunity to work on special projects?
  11. Where does this position fit into the organizational structure?
  12. How much travel, if any, is involved in this position?
  13. What is the next course of action? When should I expect to hear from you or should I contact you?