Why Do You Want To Work For Us?Posted on September 8, 2014
When it comes to job interviews, some questions are always easier to answer than others and it only takes one unexpected question to completely throw your confidence. It therefore pays to be do your research to ensure you are prepared.
Whilst it is impossible to predict the exact questions you are likely to be asked, taking the time to prepare your answers for some of the most common questions can go a long way to creating the right impression. We have therefore outlined some of the most common questions interviewers like to ask and provided suggestions for the best ways (and worst!) ways to approach answering them.
Tell me a bit about yourself…
Speak for between two and three minutes about your education, employment history and past experience. Do not go into too much detail – chances are your interviewer will be taking notes and could ask you to go into more detail where necessary.
✔ “Since leaving university three years ago I have been heading up the sales team for a multi-national company. During this time I have been recognised with a number of awards including…”
✘ “Well….I was born in 1969, the middle child of three…”
Do you have any weaknesses?
Everyone has a weakness and the interviewer is looking for someone who recognises how they could improve. The best way to approach this question is to identify one of your weaknesses and provide practical examples of ways you have tried to address it.
✔ “My IT ability was not at the level it could have been, but I am currently undertaking a training course out of work hours to improve my skills”
✘ “I don’t have any weaknesses”
Why do you deserve the job?
This is your opportunity to sell yourself. Use the job description and information you have gained about the company to explain to the interviewer how you meet what they are looking for.
✔ “In the job description you highlight that you are looking for someone who can do X. As you can see from my previous experience I have demonstrated X, Y and Z which directly benefited my previous employer by…”
✘ “Because I am better than everyone else you have spoken to today…”
Where do you see yourself in five years’ time?
This is a favourite of most interviewers. They want to see that you are ambitious and have considered how you see your career progressing going forward. It is important that you demonstrate specific, flexible and realistic ambition.
✔ “I’m looking to take on more responsibility during that period and would ideally like to be working on some of the company’s high profile accounts…”
✔ “I would like to be making a difference to your company by…”
✘ “Well, five years is a long time, I would be interested in working in X department, but equally I’m interested in X…”
✘ “I want to be earning at least X salary and taking advantage of company perks Y and Z…”
What are your salary expectations?
This question requires you to do some research beforehand; the worst thing you can do is just turn up to the interview and pluck a figure out of thin air. Investigate what the average industry salary for the position is and what people with similar skill sets to you are earning. You do not need to give an exact figure, just a broad salary range.
✔ “Ideally I’m looking for a starting salary of between £25,000 and £30,000…”
✘ “Anything, I just want the job”
Remember: There are no definitive right and wrong answers to any questions. Always do your research on the position, company and industry – failure to do so can cause you to stumble and knock your confidence.