Honestly, before an interview we always wonder and wonder what topics to prepare for, which questions we will be asked and usually consider the worst-case scenarios, but don’t worry! Keep reading and you will see how easy it is to pass and even actually enjoy an interview just by preparing a little bit in advance.
Let’s take a look at the top 5 most asked general questions and what would be the best way to answer them!
Tell us three strengths and three weaknesses that you have.
At this point, it is really important for you to sit down and write out all your ideas before deciding what you would answer. Think about your best qualities (always according to the company’s philosophy and values that you are applying for), but also your weaknesses.
The latter must be formulated as aspects that you can always improve and you are on your way to doing that. For example: “I’m too much of a perfectionist, but I have been learning to focus my attention on the most important matters and not as much on the details, in order to optimize my time and productivity”. This is obviously just an example, but always look for the positive side of everything and at the end you will notice how even your attitude towards the interview itself will really change. They ask you this question mainly for your own contemplation – they know you won’t ever say that you’re lazy but if that’s something that springs into your mind then it’s worth noting and working on improving.
Why do you think you are suitable for this job position?
Again, it is vital for you to previously do some deep research on the company’s website, social media and even read several articles about it – get all the information you can so you can adapt your answer to their philosophy and current needs. You must find the balance to sounding as a serious, assertive and motivated candidate but also one who is willing to learn and work hard!
Obviously, show (if possible) and tell them about the previous related experiences you may have even if it wasn’t an actual job, anything that taught you useful skills (classes, projects, volunteer work) is relevant! However, don’t stop there – they care about your character just as much as about your knowledge and skillset, so show them your enthusiasm no matter what position you are trying for!
Tell us more about yourself.
This is not a question, but it is really important that you study your resume and know the key points by heart. Although it seems obvious, sometimes we forgot to do this! You must know it well so you are able to answer any questions they may ask about it (time gaps, educational background, specific tools you can use, etc.) without any hesitation. Plus, this would give you much more confidence (in a subconscious way) to do the interview!
Usually, we recommend that you bring your CV with you in case the interviewer does not have it in front of them. Also, have at hand any additional documents, certificates, examples of your work, etc. Especially if you are an architect – bring your printed portfolio with you, even if it’s just an extract. These show you are well prepared and motivated to show them your worth.
Tell us how you handled a difficult situation in the past.
Take your time right now (and at the interview itself) to give it some previous thought, as this is an important question. Companies want to know that you are a bold, resolute person that has the capability to solve problems. Let them know that you don’t panic in stressful situations and that you can handle the pressure any position brings.
Questions like this one have a second motion to them. It’s not that much about the answer itself that you will give them but the way in which you will tell it. Especially for positions that involve dealing directly with clients, presenting and any creative tasks, being a good storyteller is vital. Take your time to tell the story – what the environment was, how the others reacted to the problem, what your first thought was, how you communicated with the management about it and so on – don’t just answer in one sentence! Sell yourself as the hero but make it sound interesting.
Do you have any questions for us?
This is a very common final question that interviewers use, so for you to show all your motivation and desire to be a part of the company, it is best to prepare a list of possible questions in advance and don’t hesitate to ask. Let them know you need to be as convinced about them as they should be about you! Here are some ideas about what you can ask about:
- About the team you would be one – size, responsibilities, hierarchy
- What your day-to-day would look like (tasks, work hours, etc.)
- Ask them whether you should prepare anything for the next step
- Even dare to ask when you should expect to hear back from them
Are you looking for opportunities in the USA? We can send you helpful information about how to get to the interview stage with companies there, so register for free for the J1 Visa Program. And if you are an Architect, we can help you find the perfect position for you, so sign up for the Job+J1 Visa Program.
At Architect-US work towards making your American Dream come true!
Don’t forget to subscribe to our Facebook page to stay tuned for all the latest news and opportunities!
GOOD LUCK AND GO FOR IT!