It’s getting harder to get a new job. Record high inflation, interest rates and costs, a likely recession, and other economic and geopolitical concerns have prompted many companies to lay off employees, impose hiring freezes, and withdraw job offers. In this environment, keep an eye on the pace as you may face a lengthy application process. Hiring employees will seem like a luxury for many companies.
This mindset will drive HR and hiring managers to scrutinize every candidate and hold them to the highest standards. You must prepare yourself for difficult questions designed to weed out people. Here are a few questions HR likes to ask and how to answer them effectively so you can shine through the hiring process.
Show your real and authentic self
A hiring manager wants someone he likes. That contradicts what everyone has told you in the past. It is important to have the right skills and background required in the job description. However, it will all be in vain if the interlocutor does not warm up to you and cannot imagine working with you every day. A good first impression is key to persuading an interviewer. You want to exude confidence, enthusiasm, motivation and humility.
It sounds corny, but be yourself. Most applicants come across as serious and robotically answer questions to sound professional. They are stiff, conservative and lack any humanity. It’s a big mistake. Don’t change your personality because you think that’s what the manager wants.
Let the hiring manager see the real you. The secret of the interview is that the boss wants a person who can get the job done, who is easy to work with, who can build a mutually beneficial relationship, and who can enjoy each other’s company.
The ‘Could you please tell me something about yourself?’ question
Immediately, the interviewee starts talking about delivering newspapers as a kid, points to some after-school jobs, and meanders around to talk about personal matters. That’s the worst thing you can do. The interviewer just wants to know about your relevant work experience. The cliche question is not well structured.
The interviewer wants to be convinced of how you can help them. They want an answer that makes them feel like you have the right skills, talents, background, credentials, and interpersonal and social skills to be successful in the position.
Consider the question, “Please tell me about your work experiences after college, how they relate to the role, and why you will be successful.” With that in mind, start by sharing your current job, your responsibilities, your daily tasks, and some examples of how you’ve made a difference and added value.
“What made you decide to apply for this specific position?” Question
let’s be honest Most job seekers take a “spray and pray” approach to their job search. They fire resumes at hundreds of job offers in hopes that a few will stick. Human resources and experienced hiring managers are aware of this. Her antenna is aimed at those who genuinely want to work for their company and have an affinity for the job at hand. They’re not too happy about applicants who just want a job or just want a reputable brand name company on their resume.
The question is intended to substantiate the respondent’s true reasons for applying for the position. We all know that sometimes people are in dire need of a job and have gotten to the point where they would accept anything to either get back into the job market if they are unemployed or find a new role if they hate it where you are now feel burned out.
When the job market is tight, getting approval to hire someone is not easy. It usually requires obtaining the approval of a number of higher-level executives who carefully review each new hire. Given this scenario, you need to sell yourself as someone who loves the job and meets all the right criteria to do well in the new organization.
Return to your elevator pitch. If you are unfamiliar with this concept, it derives from the ability to present an idea or project to a person in the short time frame of just riding in an elevator together for a few minutes. If you haven’t practiced an elevator pitch before, here’s what you need to do to answer the question.
Give a 30-second to about 1-minute pitch why you are perfect for the position. You have probably already read the job advertisement and know all the requirements. Offer your targeted skills, work history, responsibilities, and other factors that match the requirements of the job description. Hopefully you’ve reviewed the company carefully so that, alongside your factual background, you can add specific reasons why you’re also attracted to the company and how your skills and interests align perfectly with the company’s mission.
‘Do you have any questions?’
This simple-sounding question makes life difficult for job seekers. The question is usually standard in the hiring process. The interviewer asks for courtesy and wants to make sure you fully understand the role, its requirements and what is expected if the company decides to work with you.
Knowing that this question will inevitably come up at the end of the interview, most job seekers dwell on it throughout the interview. The candidate is more concerned with what to ask at the end of the meeting than being present in the moment and actively listening to the interviewer.
Here’s a simple solution. Think about how you hold a conversation with family and friends. You don’t wait until the end to say something. You throw in when you see fit. Don’t worry about waiting until the end of the discussion to ask your questions. Ask questions during the meeting if you really want to investigate and learn more about what the right interviewer said.
The interviewer will appreciate your investigating. They will sense that you are interested and eager to learn more. By throwing in questions, the hiring manager gets a better feel for you as a person. What is likely to happen is that the interview process will change from a robotic question-and-answer format to a lively back-and-forth discussion where both parties learn more about each other and begin to connect.
At the end of the meeting, you no longer have to stress yourself out. When you feel comfortable after a pleasant discussion, you might say, “Thank you! I appreciate all your insights. They did a great job and addressed all of my questions and concerns.” If there are any unresolved issues, you can add: “I really appreciated our conversation. I’m very excited for the opportunity. You have described in such great detail what to expect if you are selected for the position. I just have one more question. Could you please elaborate on that X? I would really like to understand it better.”
Awkward Questions to Ask
In an environment of layoffs and hiring freezes, it’s reasonable to worry about changing jobs. You don’t want to be the last person hired and first fired when something goes wrong. To protect yourself, you must ask the interviewer and everyone else involved in the hiring process tough questions, even though it will be uncomfortable.
It is only fair that you look into the organization’s financial situation. Does the company have plans for layoffs that have not yet been publicly announced? Could the company offer a contract that guarantees you will not be terminated unless there is a violation or violation of company rules?
They want to win the temperature of the company. Does everyone feel overworked and overwhelmed? It is only fair to inquire about the security of your base salary, bonus and stock options. The same applies to the working style. You don’t want to wait until later to accept a job to find out the company is canceling the remote work option you signed up for or waiving pay cuts and cutting bonuses and other benefits.