by Eric Hartwell 
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When attending a job interview, it is tempting to think that the interviewer is there just to try and catch you out. Nothing could be further from the truth.

Basically, an interviewer will need to assess your interpersonal abilities and common sense to forecast your success in getting through the training and working with team members. If you're applying for a job with hard skills such as programming computer code, you may be given more pointed questions about your past work, etc.

In addition, you'll be expected to strongly desire the company's purpose, mission, and overall feel. Interviewers want to see passion because it leads to long-term security in a job. If you love the company, you'll feel more comfortable working there.

Moreover, interviewers often try to find the person that's self-disciplined and driven. If a person's motivated from the inside, the person is more likely to be reliable, efficient, and energetic. This person, ideally, likes to be challenged.

Use original stories to back up claims. Instead of just saying, "I have strong leadership traits," provide some concrete examples and originality. College students frequently make bold claims without stories that support them well enough.

Furthermore, answer the question concisely. Interviewers commonly fall into the trap of listening to answers that spill over into tangents and long-winded explanations. Be concise in your answers so as not to add stress to an interviewer's day. Try not to go off on tangents.

In addition, be honest. If you're lacking an important skill, show that you're more than willing to learn the necessary skills to do the job well.

When you need to prepare for a job interview, there are some basic precautions such as arriving 10-20 minutes early, dressing in formal attire, and observing all the rules of workplace etiquette, propriety, and politeness inherent to a working environment.

There are also questions that you can expect to be asked. For instance, when I went for my first job interview, they asked me the following questions:

  • What expectations do you have about working here?
  • What is your favorite movie? Why? How would you describe it?
  • What are some of your hobbies and interests? Describe yourself.
  • What are your strengths and weaknesses?
  • Where do you expect to be in 5 years time?

These types of questions are likely to be relevant to your working environment or to the particular position you are applying for.

When you prepare for a job interview, be prepared to answer the following questions:

  • What defines you?
  • What are you best at? What strengths do you have?
  • What are you worst at? What don't you like doing? What are your weaknesses?
  • Where do you see yourself progressing in the company?
  • What is your favorite part about this job? Why do you want to work here?
  • What is your proudest achievement?
  • What are some ideas for how you could improve the company?
  • What is your work style? What kinds of people do you work best with?
  • What was your favorite part of your last job?
  • What was your least favorite part?

Prior preparation for these types of questions can pay dividends as you will be less likely to hesitate when asked the questions and more likely to give a reasoned and balanced answer.  

About the Author: Eric Hartwell is involved in The World's Best Home Page - visit to share opinions on jobs and employment.