Career Learning

The Interview Guide : Key Elements

You’re in the middle of an interview for a job you really want, and everything is going great. Your mind goes blank when the interviewer asks you a question for which you are unprepared.

Don’t worry if this scenario makes you feel uneasy; it doesn’t have to be this way! In this instalment of Blend Blogs, we look at how to calmly and succinctly prepare for and answer even the hardest interview questions.

To guarantee that you’re prepared and ready for your interview, follow these six steps:

1. Gather Information

Consider potential questions that may arise as a result of your investigation. What expertise, abilities, or experience, for example, do you require? What skills have you gained in your present position that you can apply in new one? How can your knowledge of the industry aid the company? What issues will you be tasked with resolving?

2. Research Yourself

By doing your own research, you’ll be less likely to be taken off guard by unexpected inquiries. It also allows you time to amend or delete any dubious images, tweets, blog entries, or comments you’ve made online.

3. Think About Your Strengths and Weaknesses

Interviewers frequently inquire about a candidate’s strengths and flaws. So, complete a Personal SWOT Analysis ahead of time to build a list of yours.

Be open about your flaws, but keep your remarks brief and pleasant, and concentrate on what you’re doing to overcome them. As an example, “My communication abilities used to be my worst flaw. But, through self-study and practise, I’ve been getting better. Now, first thing in the morning, I check in with each team member to discuss project updates.”

When discussing your strengths, concentrate on those that are most relevant to this position. Demonstrate how your strengths will assist you in meeting the needs of the company.

4. Identify Key Competencies

Examine the job description and determine the important skills you’ll need to succeed in the position. Then, present some instances of how you employ these talents in your current position. Answer a variety of competency-based questions for practise.

5. Learn to Think "on Your Feet"

You’ll be able to negotiate challenging queries like these if you think on your feet. This entails keeping composed. Take a deep breath and relax before answering a question. Prepare your response ahead of time, and don’t begin speaking until you’ve decided what you want to say.

If you’re not sure about a question, ask the interviewer to repeat it, and don’t be hesitant to ask for additional “thinking time.” Taking notes throughout the interview, which you may return to before giving your response, might also be beneficial.

Come clean if you truly don’t know the answer! Don’t just make things up; the interviewer will most likely notice, and it will jeopardise your credibility.

6. Rehearse the Interview

Role-playing is a fantastic method to be ready for an interview. Acting out events with a friend or family member allows you to see how you’d respond if you were put in that situation. It can also help you rehearse your responses and build your confidence. However, avoid offering rehearsed responses, since this may make you appear untrustworthy.

Examples of Common Interview Questions

Tell me about yourself.

Discussing your current, history, and future is an excellent strategy. Begin by resuming your existing situation. Then, fill in the specifics of the talents you’ve obtained from past positions. Finally, describe how this new employment is a perfect next step for you.

Why do you want to change roles?

Don’t use this question to confess your flaws or whine about your current position. Put a positive spin on it instead. Tell the truth if you were fired from your prior employment. Remember that such losses may be viewed as chances to refocus your goals, learn from your mistakes, and move forward.

What could you help us to do differently or better?

Positively frame your response. Discuss “extra” opportunities that the company could take advantage of or new ways of working that could help the company become more efficient. Inquire whether the company has examined these options as well. This shows that you recognise that things are rarely as straightforward as they appear, and that you desire to make well-informed decisions.

Tell me about a time that you made a mistake.

Resist the desire to reply “I haven’t,” but avoid admitting any major blunders. Instead, provide an example of a blunder you were able to correct. This demonstrates that you are open and honest about your mistakes and that you can rectify and learn from them.

How do you deal with pressure?

Stress the advantages of working under pressure – after all, a moderate amount might motivate you to reach your objectives. Describe the methods you’ve used to keep yourself and others motivated through difficult times. Use particular instances of times when you’ve had to work under duress and how you dealt with it successfully.

Where do you see yourself in five years?

Interviewers expect you to have thought about this question before, so don’t behave as if it’s the first time you’ve thought about it! Prepare a response that is both optimistic and aspirational, but yet practical.

If you were an animal, which one would you be?

This is a lighthearted question meant to elicit information about your personality. As a result, approach it with a sense of humour. Also, take use of it! Consider an animal that embodies one of your top strengths – one that is very vital for the job.


Even though interviews can be scary and may seem to be threatening, with proper help and the right skill-set you will be able to tackle any interview with ease!


John Xavier


BLEND Gobal Learning and Development for people and enterprise transformation skills. Our panel with its global experience in crafting training programs focus on value and growth for our clients.

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