In Kenya just as in the world over, the tools used when hiring people to organizations are becoming more and more sophisticated. However, the interview tool and its use by recruiting agencies and Human Resource managers is still very widespread. Research shows that anticipating interview questions by job applicants and preparing for them actually boosts the chances of an applicant in out-performing other candidates and therefore improves ones chances of being hired.
At the same time, one should know that this list is not exhaustive and there may be some outside the box questions that an interviewer may ask to test abilities as the job needs. An example is being asked how many Kangaroos are in Australia or about the rescue of some children stack in some cave in Thailand in some year. A job seeker therefore needs to be mentally prepared for questions that they may not have an answer and the employer simply wants to test that you can perform under pressure and you have abilities to deal with situations you do not know.
Here below we give questions that are most asked and we propose guidelines that can assist you to successfully navigate the interview process. The questions are not in any kind of order.
1. Tell me/us about yourself
This question is an invitation to start your show case and it is very common in interviews. Most candidates however, end up tiring the panel by rattling off their entire Curriculum Vitae and lose focus.
In Your answer, only focus in those areas that assist the listener decide early on that you are the best for the position.
How to answer: In your answer, take 2-3 minutes to highlight the following:
– Relevant academic/professional qualifications starting with the highest point of your academic achievement thereby setting clearly your capabilities/competences. Do not start from primary all the way up.
– Show case in a concise and compelling manner, exactly why you’re the right person for the job. Start off with not more than 3 specific accomplishments or experiences that you most want the interviewer to know about. Then clearly show how these experiences have prepared you for the post/job/role that you have applied to.
What are your strengths and weaknesses
This is a tricky question. Many people fumble along and give answers not relevant to the post you are being interviewed for.
What are your strengths- focus on the company that is hiring you. The strength you give should be something the company needs and keep clear of personal issues. For example you may say you are a good team player if the company handles a lot of projects and therefore working together is key to them. Sometime a candidate answered one of their strengths to be negotiation skills when they were looking for data analysts.
What are your weaknesses-
Interviewees usually fear this question. We belief it is a trap that the panel is setting waiting to bounce on the us. However, the interviewer is trying to assess your self-awareness and honesty at knowing that we are not perfect. You should give something professional you have struggled with and either overcome or you are doing something about.
Answer: Avoid common tired answers eg I am a perfectionist or attention to detail. Some originality or a genuine answer is better. Give a genuine weakness that you have overcome ega senior engineer being interviewed for management post- your weakness could be you had difficulty fully taking up your management duty and leave daily technical duties to engineers working under you. You could add that you have been working on – learning management skills which has improved your team performance. This could show that it is a growth gap you have identified and you are willing to improve. Read the rest of questions and answers by clicking the numbers below.