Qualifications Interview Questions

How to Answer Interview Questions About Your Qualifications For the Job

two men at table for job interview
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The purpose of a job interview is to demonstrate why you are the right person for the job. The best way to do that is to show how your skills, education, and experience have prepared you to do this job better than any other candidate under consideration. This means relating your qualifications to the job for which you’re being interviewed.

It's critical to show the hiring manager not just that you have the qualifications, but that you can apply them.

Go beyond simply reminding the interviewer of your relevant certifications, for example, or even the jobs you’ve held that have prepared you for this role. Be prepared to make a case for why your unique experience makes you the best choice.

The good news is that the hiring manager will most likely give you plenty of opportunities to demonstrate your aptitude for the role. Most job interviews involve a series of questions from the hiring manager, some trickier than others. Keep your ears open for questions about your qualifications, and be ready with responses that demonstrate why you’re a good fit.

Review typical job interview questions about your qualifications and practice your responses.

Interview Questions About Your Qualifications

    Are you a self-motivator? - Best Answers

    Do you prefer to work independently or on a team? - Best Answers

    How do you evaluate success? - Best Answers

    How do you handle stress and pressure? - Best Answers

    How do you plan to achieve those goals? - Best Answers

    How will your greatest strength help you perform? - Best Answers

    How would you describe yourself? - Best Answers

    If the people who know you were asked why you should be hired, what would they say?

Best Answers

    Is there anything else we should know about you? - Best Answers

    Tell me about yourself. - Best Answers

    What are you looking for in your next job? What is important to you? - Best Answers

    What are your goals for the next five years and 10 years? - Best Answers

    What can you contribute to this company? - Best Answers

    What do you find are the most difficult decisions to make? - Best Answers

    What experience do you have? - Best Answers

    What interests you about this job? - Best Answers

    What is your greatest strength? - Best Answers

    What motivates you? - Best Answers

    What type of work environment do you prefer? - Best Answers

    Why are you the best person for the job? - Best Answers

    Why do you want this job? - Best Answers

    Why do you want to work here? - Best Answers

    Why should we hire you? - Best Answers

Demonstrating Your Qualifications

In addition to describing your qualifications for the job, offer to demonstrate them. For example, if you're interviewing for a job that requires superior writing skills, demonstrate your qualifications by providing a writing sample. (However, if you provide a sample based on an assignment you completed for a previous employer, be sure you redact confidential or sensitive information.)

Another example of demonstrating your qualifications is to explain to the interviewer what you hope to accomplish during your first 30 days or 60 days on the job. Expressing your future accomplishments can give the interviewer and hiring manager insight into the type of work you're capable of performing.

Tips for Answering Tricky Job Interview Questions

No matter how much you practice, you’re bound to get a curveball job interview question or two during the process. To prepare, practice your responses and keep these other tips in mind:

1. Listen.

One of the most common job interview mistakes is talking too much. Another is not paying attention to what the interviewer is saying. Both are functions of not engaging with the hiring manager.

Remember that a job interview is a conversation, not a monologue.

You’re there to connect with the other person, and that means really listening to what they have to say.

2. Take your time.

If you don’t know the answer to a question, or can’t come up with a response off the top of your head, take a moment. It will feel unnatural to you, like 30 seconds of pondering is actually half an hour of silence, but it’s much better to take a beat than to rush. It’s OK to ask for more information, clarification about what the hiring manager wants, or for a moment to cogitate. In fact, doing so may make you seem more confident and trustworthy.

3. Avoid negativity.

Don’t badmouth your old boss, coworkers, or company. To do so is to tell the hiring manager that you might turn on your new employer at any moment. Not exactly a selling point.

Further, be kind to yourself. If you’re someone who tends to beat yourself up a lot when you make a mistake or experience stress, know that and watch out for self-undermining behavior.

Remember that above all else, hiring managers are looking for people who will do good work as part of a team. Being positive during the process will show that you’re not only qualified to do the job, but to create an uplifting work environment for the group. 

More Interview Questions and Answers

More Interview Questions and Answers
Typical job interview questions and sample answers.

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