Thursday, January 10, 2013

Interview Success - Mastering Behavioral Interviews

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Most employment interviewers are essentially asking just one core question. Why should we hire you? To further probe this answer, you may asked behavioral interview questions.

What is behavioral interviewing?
Behavioral interviews delve into your past actions in a given situation. The assumption is that your past behavior will predict your future behavior in a similar situation. Behavioral interview questions can make you squirm because they don't have a "correct answer". The interviewer may even ask you about a time when something went wrong, and how you handled it. Typically, behavioural questions begin with such phrases as "tell me when..." or "describe a situation where you had to..." or "give me example of how...".

Some behavioral Interview questions
1. Have you had to convince a team to work on a project they weren't thrilled about? How did you do it? 2. Tell me about your most innovative project. 3. Tell me about the most frustrating presentation you made. What did you learn from this? 4. Tell me about a time where you had a problem with a co-worker or supervisor. How did you resolve the conflict? 5. How do you handle pressure? Tell me about how you worked effectively under pressure.

Preparing to answer behavioral interview questions
Answering behavioral questions requires details-facts, figures and anecdotes. There is no correct answer except your past experience. To have a ready store of personal data at your fingertips, do your homework. Think of experiences where you performed admirably, where you successfully and creatively solved problems. Your stories will help you respond meaningfully to the interviewer's tough questions. Also, examine your potential job and its description closely. Then, reflect on your work experiences. Focus on the actions you took that demonstrate your best transferrable skills.

The STAR Technique
To answer behavioural questions, use the STAR technique. STAR stands for
Situation -The particular incident • Task - what was required to be done • Action - What specific actions you took • Result -What was the outcome
The STAR technique will help you portray yourself concretely to an interviewer so he/she has a clear picture that you can do the job. Understanding the purpose of behavioral interview, preparing yourself and and using the STAR technique to organize your answers to behavioral questions can help you be more successful at your next job interview.


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