How to answer basic interview questions?

The nervousness, anxiety coupled with the keen sense of anticipation and the stress associated with a job interview can really harm your prospects as a candidate. There is a lot which goes on in your mind before your interview and you must have your own ways to deal with them. One thing which you must make sure is that nothing, be it your nervousness or excitement or any other related factor should affect you in such a way that you go wrong even with the basic questions at the interview. Remember that these basic questions are as important as the technical questions at the interview. Donít treat them lightly as they act as a tool for the interviewer to gain a better insight into your needs, aspirations, goals and the values which you prize as a human being. Thus it is always advisable to do a little preparation on the basic questions asked at an interview.

Some Basic Interview Questions and How to Answer Them

Here is a list of some basic interview questions and ways to answer them.

a) Introduce yourself

Introduce yourself in a very precise and balanced manner. Base your answer on your academic qualifications, experience in professional life and some goals which you have set for yourself in your professional life. You might expound a little on your personal interests but donít stretch it too further. Remember not to discuss your whole life over here.

b) Do you know anything about our company?

It is very important that you have done your basic research about the company you are interviewing for. It creates an unfavorable impression on the HR or the interviewer if you say that you know nothing about the company and are waiting to learn it from the interviewer himself. Learn about the basic things like what the company is primarily dealing into, names of some of the important people attached to the company. Donít miss out on any recent news about the company that has been doing the rounds for some time. You can go a little further and learn about some of the key achievements of the company as well. This will ensure the interviewer that you are really serious about joining the organization.

c) Why should we hire you?

Make your answer as relevant to the job profile you have applied for as possible. Only highlight those skills which you think are ideal for the post. However donít brag even if you have extraordinary credentials to boost your prospects. You might have five or more than five years of experience in the chosen field, but try not to stress too much on this. Rather say something like that you are willing to give your hundred percent for the job, describe your skills and experience in a subtle manner and say how passionate you are about the work.

d) Describe your current job profile.

Mention the current job responsibilities in one or two lines. If you have a host of responsibilities at the present job donít forget to mention any one of them. Say a little about each one of them which will help the interviewer to have a better understanding of your responsibilities. Additionally, if you think that some of the responsibilities are compatible to the post you have applied for donít be shy to express that. Say something like ďI think my experience of managing a content team will help me as a team lead, the post I have applied for here.Ē

e) Tell us something about your strengths and weaknesses.

Once again strike a perfect balance between modesty and pride while answering this question. While describing your strengths donít start boasting about your credentials and donít be too self deprecating while focusing on your weaknesses. Say that you have certain qualities which you think are your strengths and weaknesses and that you are willing to work on your weaknesses and your strengths as well to bolster your chances in your profession.

f) Why do you want to quit your present job?

Donít create a negative vibe and portray a bad image of your previous company. Say that you have ample scope and opportunities to excel at your previous organization and that you have learnt a lot from them but now you are driven by the urge to explore new horizons.

g) What are your long term goals?

Try to create a very well thought out picture of a career you are eying for. Say how you serious you are about attaining your goals. You can be a little thorough here describing the steps you have taken and will take in order to fulfill your dreams. Convey the idea that you have worked in a systematic manner to excel in your dream job. If you have taken help of any vocational course to enhance your skills, you can mention that while answering this question. Donít sound ambiguous by saying something like ďI donít have clear idea of what I want to beĒ or ďI donít set goals for
myselfĒ. All these convey a very defeatist attitude.

h) Why do you want to work here?

It is always prudent to do a little bit of research about the company you have applied for and then answer this question. This will help you to highlight those areas which have really influenced your decision to work for the company.

i ) What kind of salary are you expecting?

This is very much a personal choice of yours. However it is always better to consult the pay structures applicable for the profile you have applied for so that you donít end up sounding incongruous.

j) Have you applied anywhere else?

Be very honest while answering this question. If you really have applied in some other companies say that but no need to get into much detail. If you have not applied in any other company be honest enough to say that.

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