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Keep Calm When it Comes to Interview Questions

27th October 2016

Job interviews can be a challenging experience. No two interviews are ever the same, as hiring managers tend to develop their own method and questioning styles of interviewing. In the lead up to your interview, you can prepare answers to some of the questions that could be asked, to help you feel more confident and avoid any stresses, panic and sweaty palms.
The aim of an interview is for an employer to make a decision as to whether they think that you are suitable for the role. To reach this conclusion, they will have a variety of questions prepared that will relate back to the role they are recruiting for. These questions can be themed and maybe based around your critical thinking skills, communication skills, technical competence and your own confidence in being able to fulfil the roles requirements.  Having been in the industry for over 25 years, we have put together some examples of some of these themed questions, and some advice to help you be able to prepare to answer them:

Critical thinking:
Critical thinking is defined as having the ability to think clearly and being able to understand a connection between ideas. This can involve analysing data before drawing a conclusion and making a decision on how to proceed. You may be asked within an interview to demonstrate where you have used this skill in practice.

Think about a time in your career when you have had to make a choice and the processes that you went through in making that decision. Where you can, try and relate it back to the job role that you are interviewing for, but it is not essential every time.

Communication skills:
Some employers throw in a curve ball question to test your ability in being able to think on the spot, and test the levels of language in which you will communicate in. This type of questions will be related to the role or it could be a question that refers to what is happening in the industry.

Ensure that you research what is going on within the industry as well as looking at the company’s website, and try to draw your own thoughts and conclusions from what you read – there is no right or wrong answer here as everyone has their own opinions, but it will show the employer that you have done your homework and that you are confident enough to voice your thoughts.

Technical ability:
If you have applied for a technical role, you may be expected to be asked a lot of technical questions in order for the employee to find out if you possess the acquired knowledge, and have the ability to be able to communicate this knowledge clearly.

As these will be specific to the advertised role, you will be able to prepare yourself for the questions you could be asked by looking at the job description and thinking about the answers you would give.

Getting to know you as a person:
There are the standard questions here in which you will be asked to tell the interviewer a bit more about yourself and the reasons as to why you are seeking new employment. Here you may also be asked about your goals and aspirations such as ‘where do you see yourself in 5 years time?’>

The company is looking for someone who is going to add value with the willingness to develop and learn new skills, as well as have the drive to succeed. It is important to ensure that your answer reflects this skill set and is beneficial to try and refer this back to the role. For example if you were applying for a senior position and you were asked ‘why are you looking to move?’, you could answer with ‘ I’m looking for a new challenge that offers more responsibility for me to be able to grow and develop within my career and unfortunately there are no opportunities available within my current employment that allow me to do this.’

You are incorporating that you are ready for a more senior role, and that you strive to develop as a person, but without bad mouthing your current employees.

When it comes to the day just remember:

Preparation is key.
The more prepared you are the more confident you feel. Researching the company and the role in which you’re interviewing for will help you pinpoint where your skill set will fit in the role and the areas in which you may need to develop on. From this you will be able to think about scenarios within your employment history that highlight what you have done well, as well as those incidents when things have not quite gone according to plan, and how you managed those moments. Make clear notes in a notebook and take these in with you to help jog your memory when answering questions.

Don’t forget to relax.
There is only so much preparation that you can do, the rest of it is down to your own personality and it is important to let this shine through to the employer. They understand that you will be nervous as it is only natural, just remember to keep it professional, listen to the question and answer the best you can.

How can we help?
Here at Zenopa, our team of expert recruiters are here to support and guide you through your recruitment journey. We work with some of the leading UK healthcare companies within the industry and are here to support and guide you through your recruitment journey to finding your dream job. As part of our service, we can set up a ‘Mock interview’ scenario via skype or face to face, to help you prepare your answers for those tough interview questions.

To find out more about this service, call the team on +44 (0) 1494 818 000, send us a message or email enquiries@zenopa.com

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