Be on your Best Behavior for this Interview

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Boss chooses experienced staffWe’re living in a day and age when good jobs are harder than ever to come by. That’s why it’s so important that we equip ourselves with the basic skills needed to really shine when it comes to job interviews. After all, turning in a glowing resume is really only half the battle. The rest of the picture your potential future employers are looking to form about you is directly tied to how you do in your job interview.

And I’m sure most people would think how you act during an interview is common sense. I mean, you want a job so you’d present yourself in the best light, right? Not so much. Surprisingly, there are numerous stories of ‘candidates do/say the darndest things’ during interviews. No fear though; I’m here to offer a few more interview tips to get everyone up to speed.

A New Age of Job Interviewing

Job interviews these days are about a lot more than grilling you on your applicable skills and previous job experience. Today’s employers also want to know more about you as far as how you problem solve, behave under pressure, and express yourself in a given situation. Job interviews that have such elements as a focus are known as behavioral job interviews and, if you’ve never heard of behavioral job interviewing, then it’s high time you listen up.

Behavioral job interviewing focuses primarily on how a given employee behaved under certain circumstances. The logic behind this is actually the old maxim: “The best indicator of future behavior is past behavior” (most may have heard this from Dr. Phil). It’s also important to learn how to prepare for this type of interview in order to not only increase your chances of interview success, but landing a job.

How to Prepare for a Behavioral Job Interview

While it’s impossible to predict what kind of interview questions you’ll actually be asked when it comes to your job interview, it’s important to make sure you prepare for a combination of both traditional job interview questions and behavior-oriented questions. Typical examples of commonly asked behavioral interview questions include:

  • Tell me how you go about handling challenges in the workplace.
  • Explain to me how you set goals and then realize them.
  • How do you handle it when you and a co-worker find disagree on a critical issue?
  • What do you do if you happen to disagree with your boss’s stance on a given issue?
  • Tell me about a time you took the initiative and went above and beyond the call of duty.

Consider formulating answers to these questions and others like them ahead of time in order to make sure you’re prepared. Arranging mock interviews with friends willing to give you honest feedback on answers to possible behavior-based questions can also be helpful for many people.

Other Prepare Tips

One of the best ways to prepare for a job interview is to do a little homework on the company in question. After all, many potential employers are looking for more in an employee than simple competence (and an impressive resume). They’re looking for people who will fit into the company’s long term vision for the future; so, the more you know about what that vision is in advance, the better you’re likely to do in the interview. Even a few minutes spent browsing the company’s website in advance can go a long way toward making sure you ace your interview with flying colors. How so? Well, you could talk about the company’s brand, recent blog posts and any interesting company news to show you’re not only knowledgeable, but up to date.


By Shala Marks