If you’ve heard of behavioral interview questions, you probably have the basic impression that they can really put you on the spot. These types of interview questions typically rely on personal experience, so a lot of job candidates don’t really know how to plan for them. However these questions don’t have to be that difficult, and there are plenty of ways that you can prepare for them.
What are behavioral interview questions, and how can you best answer them? Let’s take a look at what kind of questions you can expect, and how your behavioral interview answers can really impress the hiring managers.
What Are Behavioral Interview Questions?
Behavioral interview questions are not nearly as complicated as they sound. It is common for hiring managers to ask job candidates questions like, “How did you handle a high-stress situation in your previous job?” Or “Tell me about a mistake you made, and how did you handle it?” Other popular questions may involve your experiences with other coworkers, career-specific goals you decide on, or how you motivate your fellow team members.
Behavioral interview answers then can show hiring managers several things, depending on what you say. These types of answers can reveal your personality, your outlook on life, your people skills, your communication style, and a number of other things that are difficult to flesh out in a resume or cover letter.
How to Answer Behavioral Interview Questions
Questions like these may seem difficult to prepare for. How will you know what question is asked? What if you get nervous or don’t know what to say? Fortunately, there is a way to practice your behavioral interview answers and prepare so that your response achieves the maximum positive effect.
First of all, it is a good idea to prepare a number of stories that you can bring up. If your interviewer asks a behavioral interview question, you can select the story that is most relevant to the subject matter. Stories are the best format for this kind of question, as they elicit an emotional response from the interviewer, which can help put a unique face to you as a candidate, and help you stand out.
Think of a couple of success stories that you’ve had throughout your professional and academic careers, and memorize a basic approach you’ll take in the interview. You can use the popular pneumonic STAR to structure your story, which stands for Situation, Task, Action, and Results. Rehearse these stories as needed until you’re comfortable, which will cut down on stress in the interview.
Take care to be positive throughout the story. It is alright to admit a mistake or a weakness, but it is important to show that you managed to emerge stronger, or make the best out of the situation regardless.
Call an Expert
Now, you should have a good idea of what behavioral questions are, and you should also have a clear picture of what kind of behavioral interview answers you can put together to impress a hiring manager.
If you need further help, contact a professional. The staff at Resume Pundits are expert resume and cover letter writers, and we have experience with hiring standards at Fortune 500 companies. Contact us today to learn more.