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HOW TO ANSWER

There is an art to effectively answering interview questions. You should answer questions with tight, clear responses. Before your interview, prepare a few stories and examples of your successes and skills. You should weave these into the responses you give.

There are a few types of questions that are frequently asked by interviewers. You should have responses to these prepared in advance. Practice them in front of the mirror so that you become more comfortable and convincing.

Tell me about yourself. What are your weaknesses? Why should I hire you? Other Questions to Prepare For

Tell me about yourself.

Do's

Download a sample response to this question.

Notice how she backs up the qualities she claims by giving specific examples. Everything is relevant to an advertising job, and she does not talk about her personal interests.

  • Find a job description of the position you are applying for and tailor your response accordingly. Look at the skills and abilities required.
  • Make your answer short and precise by using punchy phrases
  • Include things like, “I graduated with a degree in (or I am a student studying) ____, I am interested in _____, and I am excellent in ____.”
  • Most importantly, keep everything relevant to the job or internship.
Do's
  • Include personal interests and hobbies.
  • Say anything negative about yourself.
  • Tell your life story. Keep your response to about two to three minutes.
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What are your weaknesses?

Do's
  • Try to turn it around into something positive. For example, “I am so ready to take initiative that sometimes I take on more than I can handle.”
  • After you say what your weakness is, explain how you are trying to fix it!
  • You could also say your weakness is something you are working to be more proficient in. For example, “My Photoshop skills are not where I would like them to be so I am doing online tutorials to learn as much as possible.”
Do's

Download a sample ″Do Not″ response to this question.

She is saying something completely negative that may scare an employer away. Being able to take criticism is a very important attribute.

  • Say something extremely negative that it will put the interviewer on edge or make them think you cannot do the job.
  • Say things that are cliché and overused such as “I am a perfectionist.”
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Why should I hire you?

Do's

Download a sample response to this question.

She uses specific examples to show, not just tell, why she should be hired. She answers the three questions listed below.

There are three questions embedded within this question.

  1. Can you do the job?
    • Explain your skills, training and knowledge relevant to the position.
  2. Will you do the job?
    • Talk about your motivation, energy and eagerness to learn.
  3. Will you fit in?
    • Be sure to get a feel for the company’s culture and personality by researching their Web site and asking questions.
    • Explain the qualities and characteristics you possess that would make you fit in with the company.
Do's
  • Say negative things about the company that you would make better. Instead of saying “Your Web Design department could use my expertise to fix your Web site,” say something like, “I could be a great asset to your Web Design department because I could bring creativity and innovation.”
  • Say things like “I’m willing to work for free,” unless you really are.
  • Drop names unless someone important has recommended you for the position. If you do, only mention it briefly.
  • Give too much information. They don't need to know about
  • Say cliche things such as ″I'm a perfectionist.′
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Other Questions to Prepare For

  • Tell me about a time when you failed. (Explain what you learned and how you intend to fix it)
  • What are your strengths?
  • What is the biggest misconception about you?
  • Give me an example of a problem you solved.
  • Tell me about your personality and interests. (Keep it relevant!)
  • What are your short-term and long-term goals?
  • Why are you interested in this field?
  • Tell me about your past experience.
  • What accomplishments are you most proud of in your life?
  • Do you have any questions for me? (Read more about this on the Ask page)