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Mastering the hardest interview questions takes planning

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Phoenix hiring managers aren’t purposely trying to get candidates to panic, answer too quickly, give unimportant information, and overall meltdown. The purpose of interviewing candidates is to determine who has the skills, experience, and past ability to produce the results that the interviewer needs for the position. In order to evaluate you against other people, sometimes the questions will target areas that are not your strengths, and those are the hardest interview questions.

  • Are the questions difficult to answer because you didn’t think of them?

One way to determine what questions you may be asked is to truly understand the job description. Critically read the responsibilities section and know what top skills are needed to be successful in the position. If a job notes ‘excellent communication skills’ in the requirements, odds are that you will be asked something like “Tell me about a time you used your communication skills effectively.”

  • Do you know why certain interview questions are hard for you to answer?

Candidates who are thrown off by certain questions should understand why the interviewers ask those, and what makes the answer so difficult. When people talk about tough interview questions it is usually because of two reasons – the question evokes emotion of some sort, or the candidate just doesn’t want to talk about their experience or lack of experience in that area.

  • Questions about your challenges are going to be part of the interview

These types of interview questions include “When did you work with a difficult person?” “Who was the worst boss you had?”, and “Tell me about a time you did not meet a deadline.” Not many people want to talk about their failures or challenges that may have ended up badly, but interviewers may need to know about how you handle the less cheery side of the workplace. Good interview answers will include an unemotional explanation of the situation, what actions were taken, and the results including what the candidate learned from it or how they would handle a similar situation in the future. Everyone has times that weren’t their best workplace moments, so being able to explain your ‘go forward’ lesson shows business maturity and professional development.

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