How to Nail an Interview
First impression are everything and we don’t need to be the ones to tell you that! Behavioural interviews are
the norm and this type of interviewing is based on the philosophy that your past actions and behaviors will
be a good indicator of your future behaviors. Therefore, how you acted towards certain circumstances in
your previous job is a reliable indicator of how you will act in your new job.
What are behavioural questions?
These types of questions differ from standard interview questions as they focus more on experiences,
behaviors, knowledge, skills and abilities. Rather than the standard question of “Do you have leadership
skills” a behavioral question is more likely to be “Give me an example OR tell me about a time.” It is
important that you are prepared for these questions.
How to answer behavioural questions
The best way to answer a behavioural question is to use the STAR format.
Situation: The interviewer wants you to present a recent challenge and situation in which you found
Task: What did you have to achieve? The interviewer will be looking to see what you were trying to achieve
from the situation.
Action: What did you do? The interviewer will be looking for information on what you did, why you did it
and what the alternatives were.
Results: What were the outcomes of your actions? What did you achieve through your actions and did you
meet your objectives? What did you learn from this experience and have you used this learning since?
How to nail the behavioural interview
- Take a blank piece of paper and write down between 5-10 examples from your education, work experience, community work, charity etc. of where you added value in a positive way.
- Now using the STAR format write out the Situation, Task, Action, Result
Some of the most asked behavioural questions
- Describe a time when you were faced with a stressful situation and how you overcame the situation
- Provide an example of when you showed initiative and took the lead
- What is your disciplinary approach to children?
- Describe an instance when you had to think on your feet to make a split second decision
- Describe a situation where you knew your boss was wrong – how did you handle it?
- Describe a major change or adjustment to your job and your reactions to the change
- Provide an example of when you had to go above and beyond your normal duties in order to get the job done
- Describe a time when you did not put in 100% into your job or performance and what you did about it
- Tell me about a time when you had to solve a problem with very little guidance or direction
- What is the biggest contribution you made to a family?
- What are you most proud of in your working career?