There are good answers and bad answers to job interview questions – some of them very bad. Here is a round up of the worst answers to job interview questions.
Got a job interview coming up? Yay! You’re going to nail it.
That being said, let’s go back over some basics. There are a lot of common interview questions, and there are some very bad answers to those questions that are also common and that you should never give. Here are those questions and those answers.
You are likely to be asked all of these, or variations of them.
1. Question: Why did you leave your old job?
Bad answer: “My old boss was a total jerk and everyone at my old job was an idiot. I quit that company because they didn’t deserve me.”
Never badmouth anyone, no matter how tempting. It makes you look petty and childish. If you don’t know what to say, say it was time to move on and you needed more of a challenge. You felt you had accomplished everything you possibly could in the role.
2. Question: Why do you want this job/to work at this company?
Bad answer: I just really need a job.
More bad answers include: “It looks like a great way to advance my career,” and “I don’t know.” You should have an answer ready about what you like and admire about the company and its people. Say that you’ve heard great things about their company culture or that you are a user of their products and services or an admirer of their CEO. Don’t say you need a job. Nobody is going to hire you because you need a job. They’ll hire you because you have something they need.
3. Question: What is your greatest weakness?
Bad answer: I’m a perfectionist
Apparently, people still think this is a good thing to say. They think it makes them sound self aware, hardworking, and dedicated. But it’s a cliché and the hiring manager will see right through you and think you’re insincere. Also, true perfectionists can be controlling and difficult to work with. It’s not a good selling point. Talk about a skill you’re working to improve, or pick a real weakness that isn’t going to cost you the job. If it’s not a leadership role, say you’re bad a delegating or tend to be afraid of confrontation, for example.
4. Why should I hire you?
Bad answer: “Because I am the most qualified for the position/the best.”
How do you know that? Have you read the resumes of the others who applied? Nope. So, you can’t possibly know that you’re more qualified than anyone else. Find something that is compelling and unique about you, and use it. For example” “I am very easy to work with and I love hard work. I bring little ego and lots of drive into whatever job I’m doing, and so I produce real results.”
5. Question: Do you have any questions for me?
Bad answer: Nope. Can’t think of any.
Never say you don’t have any questions? Are you even interested in this job!? Make a list of questions pertaining to the role and the company culture before the interview, and ask them. Don’t ask about pay – pay is not usually discussed until an offer is made – or about vacation time. Ask how success is measured or what you would be expected to accomplish in your first few months on the job. More ideas for questions to ask can be found here.