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The Two Most Important Questions At A Job Interview!

rob duffy dublin life coach

The Two Most Important Questions At A Job Interview!

Okay, well done! You have solved the CV and Cover Letter conundrum. You have landed the job interviews and are on your way to landing the job that you applied for!

Go you! 

The next hurdle is being able to convince a panel of people that you have what it takes to fit into their company culture. Can you show them you can do the job that is being offered? In this article, I will show you how you can shine in their eyes. 

Two questions can really make you stand out at job interviews and give yourself the best chance to be chosen. Unfortunately, most people disqualify themselves from getting the job because they answer these questions so poorly. Here’s how not to make that mistake!

Job Interviews Question 1 – Tell me about yourself?

So many people fear this question. It is so often the very first thing to come up in every interview too. The interviewer wants to hear what is hidden within your CV. A hiring manager doesn’t care that you’ve got a collection of stamps and like to go to your caravan in the summertime.

They want to hear how you made an impact in your previous roles. They want to hear how you ‘created a new initiative which enhanced processes saving time for 25 people in your department’ or ‘saved $125,000 by identifying errors in computer code which related to software affecting a global service offering’. 

This question is really seeking for you to give 1) a high-level summary of your relevant experience. 2) Letting the employer know why your experiences and education match the job. 3) How your career progression has led you to this point, showing you are excited to step into this new challenge. If you can portray this well, you will be off to a great start and it will be the foundation for the rest of the job interview.

There is some research you should conduct on the company and the role itself that you can also bring up in this question but for the sake of brevity, these are the main focuses to prepare for in this question.

Remember, they have a problem and a need. This question can help you position yourself as the solution!

Job Interviews Question 2 – What are your weaknesses?

This job interviews question can keep some people up at night. The key to this question is to highlight something that you have learned somewhere about a need to improve. By showing your awareness of the challenge and showing how you have adjusted and worked to fill the knowledge or skill gap.

The interviewer might ask about a personal failure but the essence of the question is the same. Mistakes that many people make is to list all of the things you can think of where you believe you are not highly skilled. Certainly do not give the trite responses such as ‘I work too much’ or ‘I am a perfectionist’. Very specifically DO NOT ever say that you can’t think of any or that you don’t fail. That will automatically take you out of the running. The question is testing how you’ve overcome adversity and how you’ve learned when exposed to a shortcoming in the past.

A magnificent answer to this could be to describe an I.T shortcoming and describe how upon this realisation, you enrolled in an I.T course and although you do not like working on Excel projects, you are able to use Excel spreadsheets without the fear and tendency to avoid them that you used to have.

What not to say at Interview?

Avoid sharing a weakness that might have been highlighted in the job specification. Read the job spec again and identify the vital skills needed that mentioning, could automatically disqualify you from the role.

Remember, you are being asked this to show whether you have the ability to combat risk aversion. Also, your reactions when facing a challenge, ability to learn and reflect on adverse situations. Everyone faces adversity. Our ability to overcome these challenges and how quickly we’ve done so is what the employer is looking for. 

Share your weaknesses by highlighting the reality. Don’t try to hide them. Show you are able to overcome shortcomings proactively and in a timely manner.

There’s many more key framings involved in interview preparation. Take time to learn how to use your existing experience to make you shine. Feel free to reach out to me and book a call. If you want to work on interview preparation, you are going to have to practice this skill.

Let’s get you that job!

You can reach out to me at rob@robduffy4coach.com with anything which might be related to job interviews or otherwise.

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