By Career Advice

There’s no need to panic when you land an interview for a remote job. If you plan answers to some of the most common questions ahead of time you’re less likely to be caught off-guard!

So, your interview is scheduled with the hiring manager; now is the time to jot down some of the possible questions you might be asked and what your answers will be.

There are several very common interview questions that can often be the downfall of job seekers who haven’t prepared before-hand.

To help you get started with your interview prep, here are the top ten questions that are most commonly asked during a job interview, along with some advice on how best to answer them.

1. Why do you want to work in our company?

A hiring manager will ask this question to make certain that you’re really interested in the company and job vacancy, and not just simply applying for the sake of it. In order to convince the interviewer that you are serious, you need to do some in-depth research. Find out as much as you can about the company, the types of roles they offer, and what it might be like to work there. Read through their website and social media profiles. Determine what would be particularly motivating to you about working there as opposed to working in a similar role for another company.

2. Why should we hire you?

This can feel like an overwhelming question but the ideal way to answer this is to start by summarizing your working experience which may be particularly important to the company. However, be careful not to come across as arrogant. Be confident and talk about observations other people have made about your work, skills or accomplishments.

3. What are your goals – OR – where do you see yourself in five years from now?

It’s better to answer this question with reference to short-term and intermediate goals rather than talking about your goals for the distant future.

It’s also advisable to involve the company in discussing your professional goals. For example, you could say that you see yourself becoming a part of the company and helping in achieving its goals and missions.

Most interviewers asked this type of question to gain insight on the real motive of an applicant. Even if you are hoping to use the company as a training ground, gain some experience then leave, you don’t want the interviewer to know this is your intention.

4. Why did you leave or why are you leaving your current job?

This is another question used to weigh the professionalism as well as the ability of an applicant to stay on a job. Be careful – it’s not wise to say anything negative about your current or previous employer since it may reflect badly on you and create uncertainty in the mind of the interviewer.

To prevent falling into a trap focus on limitations in growth or lack of challenges in the job. You could simply say that you’re currently looking for additional opportunities to enhance your professional knowledge and career development.

5. What is your biggest weakness?

Recruiters love asking negative questions. The best way to answer a negative question like this is to simply minimize your weakness and emphasize your strengths.

Mention professional traits that you deem as your weakness rather than concentrating on negative personal qualities that could be catastrophic or cause disruption at work.

Likewise, it’s a good idea to mention that you’re doing something to improve yourself professionally in order to correct your weakness.

6. When were you most satisfied in your job?

Again, be very careful in answering this type of question since this will reflect a lot about you as a potential employee. Try to answer this question without any prejudice to your previous job, and concentrate more on discussing things that motivate you professionally. This will create the impression that you are a good employee since you refrain from creating any bad remarks regarding your previous employer, plus your answer can provide your future employer with ideas on how to motivate their employees.

7. What can you do for us that other candidates cannot offer?

Some applicants usually go blank when asked this question for fear that they may answer inadequately. Be confident and concentrate on discussing your positive traits and work qualifications that you deem as important and relevant to the job you’re applying for.

8. What three positive things would your last boss say about you?

When asked this question, tell the interviewer about your positive traits both as a person and as an employee which are noticed not only by your previous employer but also by your work colleagues or managers. Think of positive remarks they may have told you and think of some performance related assessments you may have received.

9. What are your salary expectations?

It’s often a good sign when an interviewer asks you your salary expectations because it usually means they like you and might be considering hiring you for the role.

They ask this question to weed out candidates who might have unrealistic expectations when it comes to salary.

Some employers might even ask about what you were paid in your previous jobs. This provides them with an idea of how much you might consider asking from them.

A safe way of answering this question is to state that you’re looking for a salary that is similar or close to what you were previously receiving. Or, if your really hoping for a lot more, simply turn it back on the interviewer and ask what the salary range is for the role. Then ask if your qualifications and experience are in line with what they’re looking for in a candidate.

10. If you were an animal, what kind of animal would you be?

Yes it’s a strange one, but it’s a common question. A hiring manager might ask this in an effort to find the type of personality you have.

A clever way to answer this question is to try to think of animals that are not harmful or overly aggressive, but rather exhibit good qualities that might match with the type of position you’re applying for.

We hope these questions and answers help you in your next remote job interview – best of luck on the day!

Photo by rawpixel on Unsplash

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