This is a question for the interviewer to get to know you and an opportunity for you to showcase how your experience ties into the role you are applying for and the research you’ve done so far on the company.
Example: My name is [Your Name]. I am currently a [Major] at [University Name]. My interest in the [Industry] started when [Say why you are interested in the field or role]. As I started researching different roles, [Company Name] stood out to me specifically because [Why you are applying to that company]. I firmly believe this role aligns with what I am looking for in my next opportunity and I am excited to discuss that more with you today!
This is your opportunity to let them know you’ve done your research on who the company is and that there’s something about the company or role that aligns with what you are looking for.
Example: I am interested in working for [Company Name] because the mentorship and career development opportunities that this role has to offer really stood out to me just from reading the job description. This sparked my interest to look into [Company Name] further and when I looked at the core values and mission of [Company Name], it really aligned with my personal beliefs and that is something I look for when considering an employer. I am excited to continue to learn more in our conversation today but this is why I initially decided to pursue this role.
This is a question that shows your self-awareness and one you should always be prepared to answer.
Example: Two of my greatest strengths are adaptability and proactivity. The deadlines, scope, and team dynamics of my previous role often changed. As a result of my ability to adapt easily to shifting priorities and my comfort working in fast-paced environments, I was able to consistently meet or exceed project goals. Another one of my greatest strengths is being proactive. I believe in taking ownership of my work and actively seeking ways to improve processes or prevent potential issues. For example, in my previous role, I was working to track user engagement for one of my projects. In order to prevent churn, I made sure that users I managed never fell below baseline engagement due to proactively reaching out to accounts if I noticed unusual engagement patterns.
This is a question where you have the opportunity to highlight a skill you are developing, not a weakness that you are not working to improve on.
What not to say: That is easy, I always say yes to everything so, I take on more work than I should.
What to say instead: As someone who values being helpful and accommodating, I sometimes have difficulty turning down requests or delegating tasks because I tend to say yes to everything. This, however, can sometimes result in me taking on too much at once and spreading myself too thin, which can affect my ability to prioritize and accomplish my tasks effectively. As a result, I have been working on setting clearer boundaries, evaluating requests more carefully, and saying 'no' when necessary in order to manage my workload.
The best way to answer this question is to provide a specific example, explain the steps you took to resolve the challenge and mention any positive outcomes or lessons you learned. All of these qualities are valuable in the workplace, including problem-solving skills, resilience, adaptability, decision-making skills, and effective communication.
Situation: During my junior year in college, I was part of a group project for my Business 101 class. Our task was to create a marketing plan for a small business that was struggling to attract customers due to increased competition.
Task: To boost the business's visibility and attract new clients, our team was assigned to conduct market research and develop a detailed marketing plan.
Action: Due to our various commitments and deadlines for other courses, it was difficult for us to coordinate team members' schedules. To address this, I took the initiative to create a shared calendar and set up regular virtual meetings to ensure everyone was on the same page and progress was being made. Besides assigning specific responsibilities to the team members based on their strengths and interests, I also managed the social media strategy for the project.
Result: Although we faced initial challenges, our team completed the marketing plan within the deadline. We received positive feedback on our presentation, and our recommendations were well received by the business owner and our professor. Our strategies were even implemented by the business owner, which increased customer engagement and sales by over 30%.
This question is used to get a sense of your long-term career goals, ambitions, and overall fit with the organization.
Example: My vision is to become an experienced and highly skilled professional in my field after five years and have made significant contributions to the organization's success. In order to get there, I plan to take on more responsibilities and continue to take on educational opportunities that will position me to be an expert in [Field of Interest]. I also plan to mentor new grads or interns, so that I can give back and invest in young talent and at the same time, gain management experience.
Example: Based on the current conversations I am having, and my experience, the salary range for the roles I am applying for is [Insert Salary Range]. This is not looking at the total compensation package as a whole, so I would love to gain insight there if possible.
This question is looking for your proficiency and or familiarity with a particular skill or tool that is relevant to the job you are applying for. Please be honest with your answers!
Example: I have extensive experience using Adobe Design software which I used for various design projects. In my previous internship, I used Adobe Photoshop to create and edit images for social media campaigns and website banners. I also used Adobe Illustrator to create illustrations and logos for branding projects. I am also proficient in using different tools, features, and techniques in Adobe Design. As a design student, I am constantly learning and updating my skills in Adobe Design software to stay current with the latest design trends and techniques.
This is a question to understand your preferred work style and how well you might fit into the company's culture and team dynamics. The interviewer wants to understand whether you thrive in collaborative team environments or prefer working independently, as this can impact your performance and productivity in the role you are applying for.
Example: The value of teamwork and working independently are equally important to me. I enjoy collaborating with a team because of the diversity of perspectives and creativity, but I also am able to work independently with little to no direction. With that being said, I am adaptable and can work effectively in both team and independent environments, depending on the task and work culture.
You can be honest about this, the recruiter most likely wants to make sure they are aligned with any timelines you may have and want to gauge your interest. Plus you can always leverage other offers in the salary negotiation stage.
Example: Yes, I am actively interviewing and applying for roles. I want to find a role and work for a company that aligns with my values and what I am looking for in my next opportunity which is why I am excited to learn more about [Company Name] since it seems like a great fit so far!
This is an opportunity to provide a reasonable explanation for any employment gaps on your resume.
Example: I decided to take a year off in my professional career to further my education by taking different courses to enhance my skill set in [Field of Interest]. While taking courses, I was able to freelance which allowed me to gain experience working with different clients in various industries. During this time, I was also able to travel and immerse myself in different cultures; I definitely grew as an individual with this experience. I am excited to bring the skillset I’ve built during this last year and continue to grow to [Company Name].
This is your opportunity to let them know you’ve done your research on who the company is and can really make you stand out from other candidates if you’ve prepared. Make sure to look at the company website and do external research in which you can find articles that highlight the company/organization.
Example: [Company Name] is known for [Give a brief background]. I'm specifically impressed with [Company Name], [Insert recognitions] achievements. The commitment to [Insert Specific Values/Initiatives] also really stands out to me along with [mention relevant strengths of the company].
This question gives you an opportunity to highlight your skills, experiences, and qualities that make you a strong fit for the position and the organization.
Example: Based on our conversation so far and the job description, I firmly believe that I have the skills and qualifications you're looking for in a candidate. My achievements outside of the classroom with known design competitions are proof of the commitment I have for product design. I am motivated by the mentorship, growth opportunities, and innovation that [Company Name] has as it aligns with my personal mission to grow as a designer and make an impact in the technology industry. I am excited about the possibility to be a part of this amazing team and company!
Your response to this question is also an opportunity for you to showcase your skills, strengths, and accomplishments relevant to the position you're seeking.
Situation: During my sophomore year of college, I decided to participate in a national coding competition as a way to challenge myself beyond the coursework I was taking.
Task: It required participants to solve complex coding problems within a time limit and demonstrate their programming skills in multiple rounds. I struggled a bit due to juggling my regular coursework and extracurricular activities while participating in the competition.
Action: In order to prepare for the competition, I created a study schedule and dedicated time to practice coding every day, this also kept me on track with my school work and extracurriculars. I also took the initiative to form a study group with classmates who were also in the competition; this really helped us learn from each other and solve problems together. Lastly, in order to improve my coding speed and accuracy, I practiced solving problems from past competitions and researched various coding techniques, and sought guidance from professors to grow as an engineer.
Result: The dedication I put into preparing and working paid off in the end, as I advanced through multiple rounds of the competition. In the finals, I competed against top participants from other colleges and was awarded the third prize. This achievement demonstrated my technical abilities, perseverance, and ability to perform under pressure, and I was extremely proud of myself!
What skills or qualities do you think are most important for success in this internship?
How does this internship provide opportunities for professional growth and development?
Can you describe the company culture and what it's like to work here?
How does [Company Name] support and mentor its interns?
What do you think sets this internship apart from others in the industry?
What are some of the challenges or opportunities that the company is currently facing?
Is there any advice you would be able to offer me as someone starting out in [Industry Name]?
Created by industry experts