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22 Tips & Answering for Tough Interview Questions

22 Tips & Answering for Tough Interview Questions

A successful interview increases chances of getting the desired job, so preparation for an interview must be seriously approached to ensure success. If it is not your first interview, you probably know that the questions you are going to be asked might be quite challenging. If you know why each question is asked, you are better prepared to give the best answers to the toughest questions.

Find below the tips to cope with the toughest interview questions and answers:

1. What is your weakest side?

An employer wants to find out which of your skills need to be trained further and whether you have enough self-awareness of your strengths and weaknesses. It is also important to know if you can provide a reasonable assessment of yourself and if you accept fair criticism.

When you answer this tough question:

Before the interview, ask yourself critically what your weaknesses are. Let the interviewer know about one of the weaknesses and suggest the way to deal with it followed by two examples of coping with the weakness by training, further education, or work experience.

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2. Where do you see yourself in a five-year perspective?

By asking this question, an employer wants to know whether your career plans are long-termed or the position you’re applying for is just an intermediate stage. 

When you answer this tough question:

Tell the interviewer about career coaching completion, as well as the results of a career assessment test. Having done some research on the company before the interview, share your ideas concerning your contribution to its development and prosperity, as well as your professional growth. Note that saying “I have no idea” is a bad idea.

3. Why did you quit your previous job?

The questions between the lines: was it your own decision or you were fired? Will you criticize your previous boss?

When you answer this tough question:

If you were fired, never say bad things about your previous employer. Say that the decision was well-grounded and you see clearly now what you can do to improve yourself having gained such valuable experience.

In case of being laid off, say that since the layoffs were common at that time, your employer just couldn’t control it. 

If it was your decision to quit the job, concentrate on the positive experience you gained instead of criticizing the former employer. Say that you feel now strong and experienced to start in a new company.

4. How do I profit if I hire you?

The real employer’s questions: don’t you overestimate yourself? Are you eloquent in describing what you have achieved? Do you have proper qualifications for the position? 

When you answer this tough question:

Prepare the list of your previous accomplishments and skills. At the interview, highlight those three or four which are the most persuasive for confirming your qualification for the position you’re applying for. Pay special attention to your skills as a manager, team worker, as well as an effective leader. Shed some light on your motivation and punctuality.

5. What are your requirements concerning salary?

The questions between the lines: was your previous salary higher? Is your assessment of your level realistic? Don’t you expect too much?

When you answer this tough question:

Prepare well before the interview by doing some research on a salary you might expect at this position by using online resources (Glassdoor, PayScale, and Salary.com, for instance). Take a thoughtful approach when you offer a salary range. Show that you are ready to discuss the issue. 

Having expressed your expectations regarding your salary, wait calmly and silently. By doing this, you demonstrate your ability to negotiate successfully.     

Tough Interview Questions and Answers

Being well-prepared for an interview means being ready to answer not only basic questions but tough ones as well. By asking such challenging question, an interviewer aims at understanding better whether you are a good candidate for the company or not. Some questions are quite tricky, while others aim at assessing your reaction. The purpose of some questions is to see the way you think, thus how you answer them is not less important than what you say while answering. Find below some tough interview questions and answers to help you be at your best at the interview.

6. Questions about Your Personality.  

By asking personality questions, the interviewer aims at seeing what kind of person you are. Your answer will enable the interviewer to assess your personal traits in terms of being a part of the company or team. 

7. Questions about Your Weaknesses 

By asking such awkward questions, the interviewer wants to see whether you are honest and realistic about yourself. You are supposed to avoid saying that you don’t have any weaknesses or that you are a perfectionist. Instead, be positive and sincere, focus on solutions rather than on problems.

8. Questions about Previous Jobs 

An employer wants to know how you deal with various situations at your workplace, as well as what your opinion of your colleagues is. Avoid being negative and critical in your answers.

9. Questions about the Reasons for Leaving Previous Job

These questions rank among the toughest and require an honest and well-grounded response, especially if you were fired or laid off. The best strategy is to be positive and optimistic. Say confidently that you are ready for a new stage in your career turning negative aspects into a valuable experience. 

10. Challenging "On the Job" Questions

They aim at seeing how you would cope with the situations in the particular company’s environment. The best strategy is still to be positive and honest. 

There are other types of questions, tricky ones or those without right or wrongs response. So, you have to be prepared for them as well. 

What should you do if you can’t answer the tough questions? The first tip: do not panic. Take your time to think it over. Don’t hurry up. Ask an interviewer to clarify some points. In most the challenging situations, feel free to ask an interviewer for some time to formulate the answer in your follow-up letter.   

How to Deal with Tough Interview Questions

In addition to commonly asked interview questions, you might be asked some more challenging ones which require a special approach. The article explores the reasons for asking tough questions and gives tips on how to answer difficult interview questions.

There are several reasons why employers ask challenging questions at the interview. First, the employer wants to know more about your personality. Second, the employer wants to assess your thinking process to see how you approach the question and provide logical reasoning and justification. Finally, the employer might want to gauge the level of your experience. 

Let’s consider some widely asked tough interview questions and the ways to answer them efficiently.

11. Describe critical feedback you receive most often.

By asking this question, an employer wants to see if you are aware of your weak sides and, what is more important, if you work on improving yourself. Think of a weakness you know about or an event when you were genuinely criticized. Explain briefly the reasons for criticism and how you are improving the weakness. 

12. Describe overcoming an obstacle.

 An interviewer seeks to see how you come with challenges. Using the STAR method is a good way to answer such questions. Summarize the situation, the role you played in it, the steps you took to resolve it, and eventually the solution. 

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13. How good you are at coping with stress.

Since stress is an integral part of any job, an employer wants to see if you can cope with it constructively and positively maintaining good culture of the company. The best way to answer this tricky question is to describe your typical reaction to stress, supporting your explanation with an example.

14. Describe your most positive and negative experiences in management. 

What an employer wants to know is your likes and dislikes regarding certain styles of management. It might be helpful for them to understand whether you will work well under the management of a certain company executive. Honesty and sense of tact are the best strategies for answering this question.

15. Describe the biggest weakness you are aware of.

The purpose of this tough question is to understand if you are aware of your weak sides and to see the ways you are improving them. 

16. Why have you left your previous job?

This information is of great value for an employer since it enables him to make his own conclusions concerning the provision of those things a previous employer failed to provide. It will also help to transform a previous negative experience into a constructive one which will benefit both an employer and a candidate. Give an honest answer to this difficult question yet avoid giving much negative detailed information.

17. Answering the questions which have no right or wrong answer. 

By asking such seemingly simple questions, employers aim at assessing your intellectual process. They aim at gauging your analytical thinking skills, your ability to deal with ambiguous issues and communicate your ideas clearly. Do not hesitate to ask the interviewer to allow you some time to collect your thoughts. Don’t be afraid to come up with a seemingly wrong or silly answer. Remember that it is the way you answer the question logically is what an interviewer expects from you. There is nothing wrong in asking an additional question to clarify the context even though they might not be quite helpful in giving an answer. 

18. Why do you work in this company?

The employers want to see whether your decision is well-considered and grounded on the research you did on the company and its policy. This type of questions might be especially relevant if you change not only the position but the industry you work in.

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19. Why should we employ you?

The employer might want to see how different you are from other candidates and what qualities you have that make stand out. You are strongly advised to provide a well-grounded explanation of why your skills and experience make you the best candidate for the position. To know what qualities the company requires, make sure you have read the job description carefully before turning up at the interview. 

20. Do you regret anything? 

Asking this question, an employer might want to see how you assess certain shortcomings you may face in your life. In your answer, do not say that you have regrets in your life. Instead, admit to having made mistakes and say you have learned the lesson to improve yourself in future. If you decided to tell about any regret, choose one that won’t prevent you from doing your job irrespective of circumstances. 

21. Tell something about yourself

Such questions are more likely to be asked at the initial stages of the interview process. Prepare yourself by compiling a short synopsis containing the information about your education, previous job experience, and the things you have previously achieved. 

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22. Describe the greatest achievement you have ever had. 

The employer might want to see whether you can assess the most valuable accomplishment you have made. Consider providing an example from your recent job history that you would find perfectly suitable for the job you are applying for. Describe the accomplishment, explain your role in achieving it and the value it has for you.    

To sum up, while preparing for an interview, be ready to answer not only common and predicted questions but unexpected and provocative ones as well. It is a good idea to prepare as many scenarios as possible. Think of some examples and ask other people in your sphere what questions they were asked while being interviewed. Also you can ask our interview questions and answers writing service and get qualified help from top writers!