Sample Interview Questions

This page includes a number of popular interview questions. By no means is this list exhaustive, but it will serve as a good start as you prepare for your interview.

Personal

  • Tell me about yourself. (Be prepared for this question! You will surely receive it worded in one way or another. Work up a short statement describing how your academic preparation coupled with your experiences got you interested in this industry. Focus on how you are unique).
  • Describe your weaknesses. Describe your strengths. Describe your skills. (Try to do this to your best advantage. Make it relevant to the job you're applying for and directed to the person with whom you are talking.)
  • What do you judge your major successes or accomplishments to have been? Your failures? Your major disappointments? (You have to have answers. You do not have to expose any of your personal life!)
  • What were the three most important events/decisions of your life? What decisions have you most regretted? Why?
  • Are you a leader? Why do you say you are a leader? (Give examples!)
  • How did you like your summer (previous) job? What did you get out of it? What did you learn about yourself? What was the most rewarding thing about this (these) job(s)? Why did you decide to leave it?
  • What makes you want to be a __________?  

Education

  • Why did you choose Mount Holyoke College? Were you satisfied with your education?
  • What did you major in? Given your career interests, why didn't you major in __________? How has this field of study prepared you for this position?
  • How are you doing in school? What courses are you doing best in? The worst in? What have you gotten out of your courses?
  • What courses have you liked the most? The least?
  • Tell me about your high school/college years. (These general questions are the tough ones. Prepare brief structured answers.)

Job – Company – Industry

  • Why are you interested in this field? This particular organization?
  • What do you think you'll be doing in the position you're applying for?  What do you think this job requires and how do you match those requirements?  What do you think the responsibilities of a __________ are?  Why do you think you're suited for __________?  Note: Many of the interviewer's questions may sound like a musical theme with variations. They may repeat themes to see if you're consistent or because you need to expand your answers.
  • How do you judge a company when you are looking for a job?
  • In addition to the company literature we sent out, what sources did you use to find out about us? What have you actually read? To whom have you spoken?
  • What have you read about our company and products lately, outside of information in our material—in magazines, on TV, etc.?
  • In your research on our company, a) Do you see any specific problems we have? b) Is there any division in our organization that you are most interested in?

Location

  • Why do you want to stay in New York / relocate to Chicago, etc.?
  • Are you free to relocate? What constraints do you have about relocation?
  • How do you feel about traveling? Do you mind the prospect of working abroad?  

General Questions

  • Employers may invite you to visit their place of business and spend a day meeting with a range of people. During the last interview of the day you may be asked about how your day went, whom you saw, what you discussed, what impressed you, etc. You should have some notes as to what went on (names of people, their positions, topics covered, etc.) so you can discuss this intelligently, even though you're very tired and eager to leave.
  • Women may be questioned more extensively about their motivation and direction as well as about their aggressiveness and ability to handle a tough situation.
  • Remember, after each answer you give, the interviewer may very well ask, "Why?" Be prepared to give reasons for everything.

With these guidelines in mind, you are well on your way to preparing yourself for the interview. Remember, when it comes down to it, the best advice is to be yourself! Good luck!!

More Potential Interview Questions