There are many questions that you may ask the candidate during the
interview. Following are some suggestions that will help you get to the
heart of the candidate’s skills, ability to work well within your
organization’s culture, and interest in the position.
Icebreakers: Begin with a few questions to put the
candidate at ease before delving into more pointed questions.
- Did you have any trouble finding our office?
- Before we start, would you like a cup of coffee or glass of ice
- Tell me about yourself.
- How did you learn about the position?
Traditional Questions: As these are relatively standard
questions, a candidate will likely have prepared responses to them. These
questions are best asked in the early phase of the interview.
- What are your greatest strengths?
- What are two areas that you would say you need improvement in?
- What compelled you to apply for this position?
- Why do you want to work for us?
Situational Questions: Discover how the candidate would
handle a variety of job-related situations and the process behind the
- How would you deal with an irate customer?
- If we were to hire you, what is the first thing you would do?
- How do you deal with stress and frustration on the job?
- What types of pressures have you encountered in your present or
Behavior-Based Questions: These questions will provide
insight on how the candidate will handle difficult situations.
- Tell me about a crisis you could have prevented. Did you do anything
differently after the crisis had passed?
- How did you handle a recent crisis? How would you have handled it
differently, had you been given more time to think before acting?
Leadership-Related Questions: Although geared primarily for
those in management or team-leader positions, these questions may also be
reworded to fit all levels of candidates.
- How would you describe your leadership style?
- What steps do you take in order to have everyone come to an
- How do you set an example for your employees?
- What type of leader would your employees say you are?
- Can you describe a time when you were able to motivate others to get
the desired results?
Goal-Related Questions: These questions will help you
assess if the position aligns with the candidate’s future goals.
- What are your long-term career goals?
- Where do you see yourself in five years?
- How does this job fit in with your career goals?
- What was your most important accomplishment thus far in your career?
- What would you like to accomplish if you had this job?
- What characteristics and abilities do you feel are most important to
Culture-Fit Questions: The work environment and culture of
each organization is unique. These questions will help you determine if the
candidate will perform well within your company’s structure and
- Describe a typical day in your current or previous job. What gave
you the greatest feeling of achievement in your last job? Why was this
- Why did you choose this type of work?
- What motivates you to work hard? Ask the candidate to provide
- What aspects of your work experience have most prepared you for this
- How much supervision do you receive in your present or previous job?
- Why are you leaving your present job? (Why did you leave your
- What is important to you in a company?