Interview in English - Key Questions and Useful Expressions

Finding a job, passing the interview is not an easy task, but to do it all in English requires double efforts. Therefore, we suggest going straight to the point and consider today the main questions that you may encounter at the interview and useful words and expressions in order to make the right impression and hear the cherished “you’ve got the job”.
And the very first first question seems to be the easiest one:
 

1. Tell us about yourself

However, already at this stage you can make a mistake. The main thing that you DO NOT need to do is to tell everything about yourself. When asking such a question, the employer wants to hear a brief description of who you are and why you are the very suitable candidate for this position.
Talking about yourself, use these structures:

  • I was born in ...
  • I attended the ... and received my degree in ...
  • I moved to ... in ... (if relevant)
  • I have worked for ... years as a ...
  • I have worked for such companies as ...
  • I enjoy .... (to describe your hobbies)
     

2. What are your strengths?

No time to be shy! The best answer is to select 3-4 key traits that best describe you as a professional. Be confident and always give examples.
You may find the following examples useful:

  • I learn quickly and pay attention to details.
  • I am able to multitask and work well under pressure.
  • I have a positive attitude.
  • Problems never scare me. I have a strong determination to succeed.
  • I know how to work in a team and achieve a common goal.
     

3. What are your weaknesses?

Everyone has weaknesses and you don’t need to try to show yourself as ideal - nobody will believe you anyway =)
Answering such a question, you can go in two ways:

  • you can mention some kind of professional shortage, for example, lack of experience or ability in that area of ​​your work that is NOT vital.
  • Describe the professional or personal weaknesses you are working on and trying to correct.

For instance:
I know the people from my team think I’m too demanding. I sometimes tend to drive them pretty hard but I’ve started reading on the subject some time ago and I’m getting much better at managing them by setting objectives.
And a few phrases that you can use to describe your weaknesses:

  • I feel that ... is not my strongest trait.
  • I become a bit nervous when ...
  • Sometimes it is hard for me to ...
     

4. Why do you want to leave your current employer? / Why did you leave your last job?

Whatever your reasons are, don't talk negatively about them. It will not be very correct to focus on the financial issue, something like “I need more money”. It’s better to focus on the fact that you are looking for new opportunities, interesting tasks, experience and a change of surrounding.
Reasons for leaving may be:

  • I was laid off / made redundant, because the company relocated / downsized / needed to cut costs.
  • I resigned from my previous position, because I didn’t have enough room to grow with my employers.
  • I wanted to focus on finding a job that is nearer to home / that represents new challenges / where I can grow professionally / that helps me advance my career.
     

5. Why have you applied for this particular job?

Such a question allows a potential employer to check your knowledge in this professional field and understand if you fit their company.
Possible answers:

  • I would like to put into practice what I learned at university / my skills and knowledge.
  • I would like to make use of the experience I have gained in the past ten years.
  • I believe that your company will allow me to grow both professionally and as a person.
  • I’ve always been interested in ... (name the sphere) ... and your company is one of the best in this field.
     

6. What experience do you have in this field?

Again, no time to be modest. Such a question requires a detailed answer about your previous experience and responsibilities that you used to performed.

  • I have worked as a ... for ... years.
  • I have good organizational skills as I have worked as ... for the last ... years.
  • I have great people skills: I’ve been working in ... and been dealing with ... for ... years.

If there is no experience in the proposed field, but there is a desire to learn, this is also worth mentioning:
I’ve never worked in ... before, but in my previous job I’ve learned a lot about ... and I’m confident I’ll be quick to learn the ropes of your industry.
 

7. What kind of salary do you need?

Yes, this question can confuse anyone. If you have not studied salary options and don’t know exactly what you can count on, try not to talk about numbers right away. The best way out is to say that your expectations are directly related to the responsibility and tasks that you assume.

  • I’d like to know more about the job and duties to be able to discuss salary.
  • My salary expectations are in line with my qualification.

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