Most common interview questions

Mahendra Kumar Soni (CA/CS/MCOM/Ph.D Student)   (377 Points)

18 May 2012  




Tell me about yourself

Do you know why this question is asked so often in most job interviews? Because, this question is actually an ice-breaker. Asking this question starts the conversion. So one better be prepared for an answer. This question gives the interviewer a chance to know about the interviewee. Once you start talking about yourself, interviewer starts preparing his/her next question. So there are high chances that the next question that would be fired on you will be based on the answer of this question. As the answer for this will be based on you, you think and prepare it before the interview.

While preparing for the answer consider including following points.

  1.  You! Tell them your name and which place you are from. Do not start with “Myself Jayvardhan Patil”, start with “I am Jayvardhan Patil”. This is a very common mistake. Not acceptable in interviews especially in call centre jobs.
    You may talk about your family (cover up in short), you may talk about your how you came to the city, etc.
  2. Education- Tell them about your education i.e. graduation/post-graduation.
    If you are a fresher then tell them the grades you got. If you have done something different than others then tell them. It surely adds a value!
  3. Experience- Talk about your whole experience. Start from early years and gradually come to recent years. If you have a long experience then you must not be doing same thing all years. Then exactly what you were doing? This is what your interviewer wants to listen.
    If you are a fresher then talk about your projects.
  4. Experience regarding to the post you have applied for- This is of most interest to your interviewer. You may be having lot of experience but how much experience you have regarding current job post is very very important. If you do not have it then you can talk about some related experience. Or if you do not have related experience too then say it clearly. Buy along with it give them confidence that you can do it and you have genuine interest to do it.
    Fresh candidates who do not have any kind of experience, you should show some positive attitude and exhibit willingness to learn and do new things. Be ready to do new things. Don’t worry that you will make mistakes. Fresher candidates are expected to do mistakes and your employers are well aware of it so you don’t have any reason to be afraid. Believe me no one will give you more work than you can handle.
  5. Do not describe your salary or pay scale at this point of time.
  6. Avoid giving unnecessary details. Value your interviewer’s time.
  7. The idle answer should not last more than 1 minute.


Answering weirdest interview questions


Q. If your wife & mother both are in danger & you can save only one of them, whom will you save? What’s the logic behind this type of questions?

A. Hello Vinay, it is a sad truth that not every company has a good interviewing staff recruited. I have taken more than thousand interviews till date and also attended lot of them. A common thing I have found that sometimes the interviewer himself doesn’t know what he wants. And then we end up facing weird interview questions.
The interview questions may vary by a large degree. What best you can do is try to scan your interviewer’s mind. Try to find what he is expecting out of it.

For your question there can’t be a straight forward answer. It will completely defer person to person. So for such weird questions, if you support your answer by a reason then that should work.

For e.g.
I’ll save my mother because she gave me birth, she has taken my care in sun and rain.
I’ll save my mother because mother is only one, I can find another girl to marry.
I’ll save my wife because she has not lived her life yet and if she dies then may the our kids who will be part of this world in future will never be born. So it will be like loosing more than one life.
I’ll save my wife because in marriage, I have taken a oath that I’ll protect her (saath-fere).
I’ll save the one whom I can save without loosing my life.

The answer will be completely personal and it is a personal choice so it cannot be wrong! The interviewer himself doesn’t know what he will do in such situation. (unless his marriage is not working out Descripttion: :-) )
In such questions, reasoning is very important. And then the interviewer will ask questions based on your answer.

Key is

1. Find 2-3 reasons supporting your answer
2. Tell the interviewer only one.
3. When the interviewer asks questions based on your answer, and try to change your mind
4. tell him the remaining reasons.

This could be the best strategy to answer such questions.

If you feel then you may ask the interviewer in return what would he do in such case. Ask in a friendly manner so that he shouldn’t mind that.

Personally I do not prefer to ask questions based on the near and dear ones. I feel that is unprofessional. I try to respect personal boundaries. But I do ask tricky questions.

My favorite is following scenario (a very common though)

You are traveling by your car. You come near a bus stop, you see
1. A girl whom you love so much standing alone waiting for the bus
2. A sick old woman who needs to be taken to hospital
3. An good friend who want to go to the interview
Whom will you help.

My best answer is: I’ll give my car to my friend and request him to drop the old lady to hospital before he goes for an interview. And I’ll wait for the bus with the girl I love.

Conclusion – whatever is asked, give it a deep thought and do not look lost. Do not let interviewer feel that you have been grounded by his tricky question. Whatever you say, say confidently, and support it with reasons. And I’ll even recommend that you ask him the same question in return, that shows your courage and if you are talented then your employer should also be of that caliber. You may take this risk only if you have another job in hand. If your goal is to get your first job, then avoid asking too many questions.


Top Valid Reasons for a Job Change

Changing to a new job does not literally mean you’re a looser. And you just can’t do your job properly that’s why you can’t keep up. The truth is changing your job can possibly give you more than what one can expect. It can even give you the ability to do things that you have always wanted to do from the start.
People tend to get confused with regards to the positive and negative effects of changing jobs. Sure, there are things you should consider before quitting your job. The following will be the reasons on how and why you should change your job.
1. Payment- If you feel that you are underpaid for your services. And it does not seem to be enough for your daily needs. Then you should be starting to look for a new job as of this time.
2. Management- A management that does not have the capability to manage its workers does not deserve your services.
3. Lack of interest- This is the main reason why a big chunk of the workers population decide to change their jobs.
4. Proximity of the area- Having a job that is very far from ones house will be a big problem with regards to transportation cost and the time wasted during the transportation.
5. Extra benefits- Most companies support workers throughout the working time by giving away medical benefits and insurance. However some may not have enough ability to take this cost. This is a big reason as it ensures ones stability in times of problem.
6. Job mismatch- If you have finished up nursing but you are working as a call center agent. Then you should know that certain feeling that you long to work for the job that you have trained for.
7. Working time- If night shifts sound easy from the start. Then wait till you try it and see significant loss with regards to your health.
Switching job can be a new beginning but you need to find out your worth first. Most of the people spend their three fourth of life to work, so it must something that you don’t regret ever.
Looking for a new job in the fields may seem a fresh new start, but first try to measure your own abilities. And how will you fit your choice of job. And if have already made your mind to leave your current job then better you start preparing for critical interview questions like ‘tell me about yourself’, etc.


Why should we hire you?

The best way to answer of this question is to convince them by giving the examples of your skills and worthiness why you are the best candidate for the job. Compare the job descripttion with your abilities before them, as well as also mentioned what you have accomplished in your other positions. Be positive and attracts their attention towards your ability, your experience, and your energy. Also show your interest in the company and the position.


Why do you want this job?

Sometimes the interviewer is not convinced about your purpose for applying this job. Generally the interviewer wants to know how long this person will stay with them. And if the purpose is not clear then the interviewer may get an impression that you are not looking for a permanent job and you will leave the organization soon.
For answering this question, you have to define yourself as the eligible and best candidate on the behalf of your experience and qualities needed for the job. Also mentioned that you the company have an excellent image and you want to work for an organization like it. You can do your best and enjoy a lot while working for this company.