The interview questions your interviewer asks are often different from the questions your interviewer wants answered. You may be asked the question, "How was your relationship with your old boss?" However, what the interviewer really wants to know is, "Are you someone who is easy to work with?" The problem is that if the interviewer asked, "Are you easy to work with?" you (and everyone else) would answer, "Yes."
In order to succeed in your interview, here are some of the often indirectly asked job interview questions you will need to answer:
Abilities Are you smart enough, efficient enough, and reliable enough to get done what needs to get done? The company is afraid that you will need constant attention and hand-holding, and it will be hard to trust you to deliver high-quality results. In your next interview, you will need to prove that you are a self-starter who can solve problems. I recommend thinking of at least one story that can help address this concern.
Potential You will need to do more in your job than what's asked of you on the first day. Will you be able to grow with your position? Will you be able to adapt and learn new approaches as a situation changes? The company is afraid that it will take a long time before you are skilled enough to do the job. In your job interview, you should demonstrate your ability to learn new skills and adapt to changes.
Genuine interest in the job Are you going to invest yourself in the job, or just go through the motions and punch the clock? Furthermore, will you be shopping for a new job as soon as you walk in the door? The company is afraid that when push comes to shove, you'll have decided that you already put in your forty hours for the week and will have headed home. Do your homework about the firm so that you will be able to speak effectively about why this job is a good fit.
Alignment with organization's mission Do you care about what the organization does? Will this job resonate with what is important to you? Every company and organization has a set of values and a culture that's built around those values. The company is afraid that you may become discontent or not get along well with those who work there, and as a result, you could disrupt the ability of others to do their work. Review what the organization's mission is before you arrive at the interview. Be prepared to speak candidly about why this mission fits with you.
Expertise and background Do you have the technical knowledge and experience required to do the job? Have you represented yourself honestly? The company is afraid that you will over-promise and under-deliver. Additionally, it is concerned that it will be expensive to discover that you are delivering these weak results. Demonstrate a track record of success. Be specific.
Recognition of authority If someone asks you to do something, will you do it? The company's fear is that you will behave in a way that damages the flow of work. To allay this fear, during the job interview, be polite and respectful. Also, don't be afraid to discuss occasions in which you worked as a member of a team and worked well with your manager.
Since many of these issues won't be asked of you in the interview, think about the interview questions you are being asked and in which of these areas the question is trying to assess you. Then answer the questions in such a way that you address these underlying concerns.
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