A potential employer aims to identify the best candidate for each position that needs to fill. When he asks a question like this, he tries to determine whether or not you understand what the role entails.
Your response will help to reassure him that you have the highest level of training required and a firm understanding of what you are doing.
Your interviewer must find a candidate who is capable of performing the job at the highest level possible. Such performance is dependent on informed procedure and instruction that illuminates the ground.
Why does the employer ask the question, ‘How did you prepare for this interview?
Hiring managers will ask you this question to see if you are a self-starter. Hearing about the various actions you took to prepare for your meeting can demonstrate to interviewers that you are serious about landing a job. Your response may also indicate that you are a thorough and dedicated worker.
Here the potential employer wants to know what steps you took to get ready for today’s interview. Even if you didn’t have much time to prepare for the meeting or if it was a last-minute booking, chances are you looked up the company online or read the job description.
You can be succinct and briefly discuss how you prepared for the Interview.
How Should You Respond to the Question?
The answer to the question should express that you made an effort to conduct a successful interview.
Mention, for example, the following steps:
- Research the company and the role.
- You are working on your body language and speaking voice.
- Practicing mock interviews with friends or family.
- Choosing a professional interview outfit.
- Leaving early for the interview to ensure on-time arrival.
Few Samples of Responses
1. I attempted to learn everything I could about your company. I spent about two hours browsing your corporate website, including the careers section, to learn more about your history, the values you try to instil throughout the organization, the working environment, and other details.
Furthermore, I reviewed your company’s LinkedIn page, especially looking for profiles of employees in the FP&A department, to better understand the background and experience and whether I would be a good fit for your team.
I have to say that I like what I’ve read so far about your company, and my research has strengthened my desire to succeed in this interview and land a job with you.
2. I didn’t do anything special to prepare because I still don’t know who the eventual employer is. Your agency only shares the offer details and the job description, but it is tricky to prepare for the interview without knowing the employer’s name.
The best preparation is practice.
I’ve already had three interviews this month, and I’m sure I made some mistakes in each of them.
I believe I learned from my mistakes and will do better in the future.
3. To be completely honest, I’ve hired an interview trainer.
I paid more than $500 for four coaching sessions.
That’s how much I want to succeed and get this job with you.
But I also hired the coach because it had been a long time since I had interviewed for a job.
I understand that a lot has changed over the years, and the questions that hiring managers ask today are very different from the questions they asked ten years ago.
I tried to prepare for a variety of questions with the help of the coach. Let’s see if you ask me any of the questions.
4. I didn’t prepare because I strive to be genuine in everything I do. I mean, if I prepared my answers to some difficult questions ahead of time, I’d have a better chance of succeeding. At the same time, I am confident in my communication abilities and can respond to almost any question on the spot, avoiding awkward silence.
I’ve dealt with a wide range of workplace situations, and I shouldn’t have difficulty discussing them.
5. My preparation was a little out of the ordinary, in my opinion.
Yesterday, I attempted to spend a perfect day by relaxing, meditating, going for a short run, and listening to my favourite music. Only to calm down and empty my mind, not let my nerves get the best of me. Then, this morning, I imagined myself coming here, meeting the receptionist, shaking hands with you, answering this and that question, and eventually getting the job. I just imagined a pleasant experience in your company. And I have to admit, I’m feeling great here, no nerves, and it appears that my preparation is working.
6. I accomplished a great deal. First and foremost, I considered the most common interview questions and attempted to write down a few key points I wanted to discuss if each of the questions was asked. Then I called Mark, my contact at your company, the man who recommended me for the position.
I asked them about the interview process and the job details and if they had any advice on how to ace this interview. We talked for approximately 25 minutes. Then I double-checked the job description and my application and cover letter to ensure that I had everything in order and understood all of the terms of the offer.
Last but not least, I tried to get a good night’s sleep last night so that I could wake up feeling refreshed and ready to give you my all in our meeting.
7. I tried to anticipate what questions I might be asked by browsing websites such as Glassdoor and Indeed and reading posts from people who interviewed with your company in the previous 12 months.
Then I went to InterviewPenguin.com, the most excellent website with the best interview answers online, and spent hours going through their articles, checking answers to different behavioural questions, and making notes on what I would say if faced with this or that question. I spent more than eight hours on the entire process, and I’m hoping it pays off.
It is acceptable to admit a weakness in your interviewing skills.
Perhaps you struggle with interview nerves or remain silent when confronted with difficult behavioural questions in your interviews.
If this is the case, it is perfectly acceptable to admit to having such a weakness and explain what you did while preparing for the interview to ensure that your weakness will not significantly impact you and will not be a deal-breaker on the big day.
Keep in mind that honesty is a highly valued commodity in interviews. Being able to admit that you struggle with something and improve your weaknesses can only help you succeed and eventually get the job.
If you have nothing to lose, don’t be afraid to try out unconventional answers.
There are always favourites in every interview. People with the best resumes, those who made the best first impressions during the phone interview, and so on. Hiring managers will always have favourites, but this does not guarantee that one of them will get the job. You may, however, find yourself as an underdog. Maybe you don’t meet one of the job requirements, or perhaps you just graduated from college. They still invited you, possibly because they needed a certain number of candidates to speak with.
You typically have nothing to lose in such a situation, and your best chance of success is to choose some unconventional answers. You are simply saying things that others are afraid to say. You may not stand out with your education or work experience as an underdog, but you can still stand out with your interview responses.
You Should Avoid These Mistakes
Hiring managers can gain a clear picture of your value as an employee by asking and answering interview questions.
To avoid pitfalls that could jeopardize that perspective, consider the following:
Do not be afraid to talk about your goals, skills, and talents.
- Do not appear to be embarrassed about your education.
- Don’t forget to bring up your various affiliations and associations that demonstrate your keen interest in the work.
- Make a point of emphasizing your positive life experiences.
- Hiring managers understand that a person’s life experience, volunteer work, and education all play essential roles in the type of employee he or she becomes.
- Discussing your diverse set of skills and experience will assist the interviewer in visualizing you as a member of the work team.
- Your response will aid in demonstrating your comprehension of the job you will be performing.
- Highlight your skills and talents to demonstrate that you are prepared to achieve great things.
- Bring up your work ethic and your ability to complete tasks quickly.
- Discuss the courses and training you’ve received that have helped you perform better at your job.
- Demonstrate how your personal experiences have made you a better employee.
- Explain why your experiences and the skills you developed there make you the best candidate for the job.
- Keep your answer clear and concise will demonstrate to your interviewer that you are confident in your abilities and excel in this position.