What are the most common job-interview questions?

Question: “What are the most common job-interview questions?”

by Randall S. Hansen, Ph.D.

Before even addressing this question, let’s be honest and say the most important elements related to success in job interviews is research and preparation. The more job-seekers know about the type of interview(s) they face, the better you can anticipate questions and prepare and practice answers. Employers often use a combination of traditional and behavioral interview questions, and you need to be prepared.

Finally, remember that the job interview is the time to sell yourself to employers. If you are having trouble with interviews, you might also review Career Doctor Question 5: Interview Prep and Career Doctor Question 8: Getting Interviews but Not Job Offers.

From various research sources, here are some of the most common interview questions job-seekers should expect in a job interview:

  • Tell me about yourself.
  • Why did you leave your last job?
  • What do you see yourself doing five years from now? Ten years from now?
  • What are your long-range career objectives?
  • Why did you choose this career?
  • How well do you work with people? Do you prefer working alone or in teams?
  • How would a good friend describe you?
  • What would your last boss say about your work performance?
  • Why should I hire you?
  • What makes you qualified for this position?
  • What do you think it takes to be successful in a company like ours?
  • In what ways do you think you can make a contribution to our company?
  • What’s the most recent book you’ve read?
  • What two or three accomplishments have given you the most satisfaction? Why?
  • Describe the most rewarding experience of your career thus far.
  • Why did you decide to seek a position in this company?
  • What can you tell us about our company?
  • What do you know about our competitors?
  • What two or three things are most important to you in your job?
  • Are you willing to travel for the job?

If you really want to be prepared for your next job interview — and see not only a list of nearly 200 job interview questions, but also a database of sample job-seeker responses, go to our Job Interview Question Database.

Other Resources that will help you with job interview questions:

This article is part of a series from The Career Doctor’s Cures & Remedies to Quintessentially Perplexing Career and Job-Hunting Ailments. Read more.

See a list of all the most common college, career, and job questions — and Dr. Hansen’s solutions.

Who is the Career Doctor? Learn more, read his current career column, or browse the column archives when you visit the Career Doctor’s homepage.

QuintCareers.com Founder Dr. Randall Hansen Dr. Randall S. Hansen is a nationally recognized career and job-search expert. He is founder of Quintessential Careers, one of the oldest and most comprehensive career development sites on the Web, as well CEO of EmpoweringSites.com. He is also founder of MyCollegeSuccessStory.com and EnhanceMyVocabulary.com. He is publisher of Quintessential Careers Press, including the Quintessential Careers electronic newsletter, QuintZine. Dr. Hansen is also a published author, with several books, chapters in books, and hundreds of articles. He’s often quoted in the media and conducts empowering workshops around the country. Finally, Dr. Hansen is also an educator, having taught at the college level for more than 15 years. Visit his personal Website or reach him by email at randall(at)quintcareers.com. Check out Dr. Hansen on GooglePlus.

Questions about some of the terminology used in this article? Get more information (definitions and links) on key college, career, and job-search terms by going to our Job-Seeker’s Glossary of Job-Hunting Terms.

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