We’ve all been stumped by these tricky interview questions, and we want you to learn from our mistakes. Whether you’re asked about your biggest weakness or your leadership style, after reading this article you’ll be prepared no matter what question they throw your way.
Tell me about yourself. You’ve already got an elevator pitch - use it! This is the ideal time to practice your short and sweet summary about your background, strengths and what sets you apart from the rest.
Pro tip: Don’t overthink this one. You know yourself and what you have to offer. Our BGs practice perfecting their elevator pitches as part of our program.
What’s your biggest weakness? This question can feel like it has is no right answer. Why would an employer want to know what you’re not good at?
This is a great time to showcase your self awareness and humility by acknowledging that you’re not perfect at everything. We want you to think of this as a two-part question: addressing your biggest weakness and how you overcome it.
I was asked this in a job interview in June and responded with, “I’m a detail-oriented person and noticed I was having difficulty looking at the big picture. To get ahead of this, I created a list of goals for each of my projects that I put on the wall next to my desk. Whenever I feel like I’m getting stuck in the details, it’s helpful to look up and remind myself what the larger goal is.”
What will you not miss from the job that you’re leaving? Tricky! BG Amanda Nicoletti’s tip is to never speak badly about a former employer, no matter what your reason for leaving is. Think about it from the interviewer’s perspective: If you’re speaking badly about your current employer now, it could be the interviewer’s company that you’re speaking badly about in the future.
This interview is about YOU, so let’s make this question about you, too!
How do you manage your time?
BG Laura Hanus was a very involved student while at Northwestern University. In an interview, she was asked how she juggled all of her extracurricular activities while being a full-time student. Describing your time management skills can be tough! You want to show potential employers that you’re involved in different activities, but not overcommitted.
If you’re someone with a packed resume who is concerned about coming off too busy, be sure to talk about your experience prioritizing tasks. Whether it’s using a notebook, to-do list or blocking off sections of time for specific things - make sure to give an example!