While looking for a job is stressful, facing a job interview can often be even more nail-biting!
It is especially stressful for those who are new to English because they may not be fluent, or as comfortable, in spoken English. There’s no need to worry over what they are going to ask and how you are going to answer. It is normal to be apprehensive (afraid) when anyone goes for an interview because you have invested in your career goals. You do not want to miss an opportunity.
Here are 5 questions that you will probably encounter in an English job interview and some example answers for you. Hopefully, we can give you a bit of a head start!
Why are you interested in this role?
This question is a chance for you to show what research you have done into your potential employer. Here you could give examples you found, which you find to be particularly interesting or compelling about the company.
In addition, you could explain your career path so far and why it matches your aspirations or goals.
You might also want to add a bit about why you are looking to leave your last role if you have come from another job. This often links to why you are looking at a new job in a natural way. You could be looking to leave your current role because there are a lack of opportunities there and the role you are interested in provides many new opportunities for you to grow.
What are your career aspirations (goals)?
With a question like this, they don’t want to know what you aim to do up until you retire, they want to hear more about why you are looking at this role and why it fits your career goals. You can also use examples of how the role helps you to improve and grow, such as:
- I would like to be more productive and independent in my work.
- Enhance my knowledge.
- Become a team leader.
- Add to my skills.
You can elaborate upon your multiple goals in career domains like skill/qualification, job ladder, professional achievements, and several more.
What are your main strengths?
This is a question that allows you to show why you deserve the position over others in the interview process. You should try to impress your potential employer but they won’t be interested in a long, bullet-pointed list of attributes. You need to be able to give practical examples.
For instance, you can say: I adhere strictly to deadlines when given a task and then give an example of how you have done this in the past. I am always on time and do not leave until the job is done. I am reliable and can be trusted with urgent tasks.
Feel free to go into as many strengths as you are comfortable with and that you can back up with evidence.
It is important to respond with credible answers. Otherwise, you will give the impression that you have just memorized the answers.
What are your main weaknesses?
Everyone has a weakness, no matter how insignificant it is to the quality of work we produce. Telling a potential employer that you have no weakness is a poor response. The interviewer wants to know how you are working to overcome your weaknesses.
You can respond intelligently in this case. You can make your weakness appear like your positive quality. For instance, you can say: I am often indecisive before I take the final decision. I prefer to consult all the members in my team before deciding upon the best approach to a task.
Another way to respond is to spell out (tell them) your weakness such as being disorganized and then go on to explain what you are doing to improve upon it. For instance, lately (recently) I have tried to follow a time-management system to help me list my tasks and approach them systematically.
What salary are you looking for?
You must come to the interview prepared for a response based on industry research. You should neither sell yourself too low nor too high. Don’t appear confused or lost. Appear confident in naming the price you think you deserve. The interviewer will already have a figure in mind, they just want to be sure that your expectations match their own.
Finally, you do not have to fear a job interview. Be honest, transparent, and confident.
Show them your skills, your enthusiasm, and your interest.