Answering Tricky Job Interview Questions

During most interviews, you will be asked some tricky job interview questions. There are several tricky questions hiring managers commonly use to gain insight about job candidates. Asking these questions help them learn about your thought process and and comfort level with difficult tasks.
Read on for ideas to get you ready for these questions.

Job Interview Questions Related to Individual Behavior

These questions relate to how you respond to situations, such as:

  • How do you prioritize a variety of tasks with competing deadlines?
  • What is your reaction to criticism? And to praise?
  • What do you do when you need to adhere to policies you feel are too restrictive?

Job Interview Questions Related to Interpersonal Behavior

These questions are designed to learn about your ability to work with other people. The interviewer may pose questions or direct you to respond to a scenario.

  • Describe a time when a customer or client complained to you about your service. How did you manage the complaint?
  • What actions do you take to resolve conflicts with work peers?
  • What steps would you take if you witnessed unethical/illegal acts in the workplace?
  • What approach have you taken when you have had challenges with a supervisor?
  • Are there changes you would make in the future based on past interactions?

You Can Be Prepared for Tricky Job Interview Questions!

Prepare for behavioral interview questions by thinking about challenging situations from the past:

  • Make brief notes that describe the issue.
  • What was your initial reaction? A reaction is typically immediate and emotional.
  • How did you respond? A response involves deliberate thought and planning.
  • What steps did you take to resolve the situation?
  • What was your assessment of the outcome?
  • What did you learn from this entire situation?
  • Have you applied lessons learned to resolve other situations?

As you review various scenarios, you’ll see your pattern of adaptability emerge. Use what you have learned about your adaptability to prepare your brain for answering tricky questions by:

  • Identifying a challenge you experienced.
  • Describing the actions taken to respond to the challenge.
  • Summarizing the outcomes of your actions.
  • Describing lessons learned and how you use these to address challenges.

For more job interview tips, check out What Not to Say During a Job Interview