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Archive for the ‘Interviewing Skills and Tips’ Category

Crazy Interview Questions – If You Were a Car…

Job Interview Question:  If you were a car, which one would you be?

Yes, job interviewers have actually asked this question.  If they ask you, what will you say?

I recently posted this on Facebook and got some great answers that I wanted to share with you:

I was asked that as part of cheer tryouts in middle school. Of course I said a Shelby Mustang. No explanation needed! Lol

An SUV: one that could carry everyone, be very dependable, and be the one to have in event of a crash

Answer a question with a question - Where would I be used and what is my purpose? Clarify the purpose behind the question...
I would say a Toyota Sienna minivan...lol...safe, reliable, and practicle. Ok, I wouldn't get the job either because I am too boring.

 

Check out my Facebook page to see more great answers....

 

 

’30-60-90-Day Action Plan Made Me Stand Out and Get the Offer’

iStock_000017862376SmallI received this great letter from Stephanie about how the 30-60-90-Day Action Plan helped her shine in her phone interview and face-to-face interviews and beat out 3 internal candidates for the job!

Hi Peggy,

I wanted to take a few moments to compliment you on the 30-60-90 Day Action Plan... Last month, I used them to prepare for a series high profile [face-to-face] interviews.

[I first had a phone screen.]  After receiving feedback on my phone screen, the interview panel said that I did not distinguish myself from the other candidates in the pool. Once I heard this... I was on a mission!

I...decided to sign up for Career Confidential and download the [30-60-90-Day Action Plan] tools (Word doc and [PowerPoint] template).  I thought I knew how to do an action plan - was I wrong! ;) Your course and tools made me even more confident during my [2nd] phone discussion with the hiring manager. I was very capable in discussing my specific plan if I were given the job assignment tomorrow. And he bought!

As a result, I was invited to participate in 8 F2F interviews with 3 VPs, 3 Directors, and 2 Sr. Managers. With your help... I delivered! I could tell that each panel member was very interested in my thought process and was very impressed that I had given great thought to my action plan for the first 30-60-90 days. Apparently, the other candidates did not have an Action Plan. Following my interviews with the Leadership team, I had a 3 1/2 hour lunch with the hiring manager. His first question was, "Tell me, how did you prepare for this interview?"

He was blown away by my in-depth review of the job and what would be needed to on-board the new hire quickly. And get this... I am an external candidate and the competition was three internal candidates!

I am very happy to report that yesterday afternoon, I received a phone call with their intent to move forward with me and they will have a job offer in my hands tomorrow! I can't believe this all took place in less than 4 weeks! Thank you!!!

Now, since I have to negotiate the salary, I will be checking out your course on this topic tomorrow. ;) [Salary Negotiating]

Thanks again for your awesome videos and practical tools needed to shine during interviews. Well done!

Sincere regards,

Stephanie T.

Please notice this about Stephanie...in her first phone interview, she was good, but she did not stand out.  The only thing she did differently was to add a 30-60-90-Day Plan to her interview preparation and conversation.  The plan made an enormous difference for Stephanie and ended up getting her the offer, even over 3 internal candidates.

If you are doing well in interviews, but not getting the offer, I encourage you to create a 30-60-90-Day Action Plan for your next interview so that you can get the offer, too.

 

Job-Winning Interview Answers About Your Greatest Accomplishments

The toughest job interview questions are often those that require us to tell about our greatest accomplishments. First, you have to know what those are--which ones will be impressive to the hiring manager? Next, you need to be prepared to explain those achievements. They want to know details.

In the video below, I will give you a very easy way to prepare interview answers that will get you the offer.

If you want more help, see my blog series, How to Answer Interview Questions. You'll see detailed examples for 101 tough job interview questions.

Monday Motivator for your Job Search and Interviews- Find Solutions

 

Flower

Problems are not stop signs, they are guidelines.
- Robert H. Schuller

 

What problems are you facing in your job search? Whatever it is, I want you to realize today that this problem shouldn't hold you back--it should teach you something that helps you be more and better than you are now.

If you can't find the right jobs, it doesn't mean they aren't there. It means you need to find them in the hidden job market, which accounts for at least 70% of all available jobs).

If you have submitted your resume 437 times and can't get an interview, it doesn't mean you don't deserve an interview. It probably means that you haven't presented yourself properly with your resume. I've seen it over and over again...job seekers who redo their resumes in the right way (adding numbers often does the trick) start getting interviews immediately. Or, not getting interviews may mean that your resume isn't getting delivered to the right person. To get an interview, your future boss (the hiring manager) needs to see your resume. Submitting your resume online sends it to HR, and they may not send it to the hiring manager for you. To make sure it gets to the hiring manager, you need to contact them yourself. (Learn how to contact hiring managers.)

If you get interviews but not offers, it doesn't mean you're not qualified. It means that you aren't interviewing well--and that's a skill you can easily learn. Check out my blog series, How to Answer Interview Questions. Learn to create a 30-60-90-day plan. Both of these will guarantee you a better interview than what you are experiencing now.

If you let a problem be a stop sign, it will keep you in your job search for months, or even years. If you use it as a guideline to adjust your actions, you will find the path to success. Best of luck!

 

Perfect Interview Answers Free Training Webinar

Did you know that employers are listening for certain words, phrases, and concepts in your interview answers? If you don’t say what they want to hear, you won’t get the job.

In this webinar, you will learn perfect interview answers you can adapt for any job in any field.

These answers are the “magic words” that will unlock job offers for you. You will learn:

  • Perfect answers for the 4 most common interview questions
  • How to make them want to offer you the job
  • How to relieve the hiring manager’s 4 secret fears about you
  • An interview technique that will make them beg to hire you

Don’t go to another interview without this information!

Register Here

Stay-at-Home-Mom (18 Years) Gets Sales Job!

portrait of a strong business womanHave you been out of the work force for a while? This mom was home for 18 years, but she landed the job by "over-preparing" for her interviews and bringing a 30-60-90-Day Plan.

Peggy and Career Confidential,

Thank you for contributing to my success in closing the sale. In my first phone interview, I used many of your suggestions outlined in your "Interview Preparation Guide" and was OVER PREPARED for the call! Next, I used your template for a 30/60/90 Day Sales Plan and customized it in the in-person interview with the hiring manager.. she was so impressed that she told me that she was going to present it in her team sales meeting the next day!!!

For the third interview, I customized a PowerPoint presentation for the panel Mock CIO Sales call that I put together from the "Interview Preparation Guide" again. And finally, on the fourth interview over the phone with the Regional VP of Sales, he was so excited, he welcomed me to the team! Later that afternoon, the hiring manager sent me an email saying, "She just had to laugh, she didn't expect him to 'make the offer', but figured that she nailed it again!"

Peggy, I have been a stay at home Mom for 18 years after a successful 7 year sales career with IBM and have been searching for a job for 8 months!!

I am excited to begin my new career in sales next Monday! Thank you for your expertise and materials to provide the resources I needed to close the sale and get the job!

Regards,

DeAnne J.

DeAnne was able to go back to the same career she left 18 years before simply by learning how to interview very well (she used the Job Interview Prep Kit and the 30-60-90-Day Sales Plan).  Someone else might have given up after being out so long and coming back to the job market at her age (well over 40), but DeAnne brought her A game and got the job!  Way to go, DeAnne!

If DeAnne can do it, you can do it, too.  Get my free Job Interview Prep Kit and your own 30-60-90-Day Sales Plan today.

7 Ways a 30-60-90-Day Plan Gets You the Job

Handshake between businessman and businesswomanWhat is a 30-60-90-Day Plan?

A 30-60-90-day plan is a written outline of what you will do as an employee within the first 3 months of your new job.  It’s broken up into sections:  the first 30 days usually includes training and getting to know the company (customers/clients/products/services/procedures); the next 30 days are focused on getting out on your own and into the swing of things; and the last 30 days are often more about branching out, launching your own projects, or bringing in new business.

Creating an outline like this will set you apart from every other candidate for the job.  Job seekers who bring a 30-60-90-day plan see amazing results.

Why does it make a difference? Creating a 30/60/90-Day Plan shows several intangible but important qualities that they'll never be able to learn from your resume or interview answers:

 

Read more...

Job Interview Questions and Answers App for Android

See how to answer interview questions in a FREE video app for Android

iPhone Screenshot 1

Job Interview Questions and Answers App

Practice your answers with a professional coach in this free app--99% of users say it improves interview answers immediately!

We've launched a Job Interview Questions and Answers app for Droid, available on Google Play!

It makes how to answer interview questions a snap, giving you incredible confidence and effectiveness in your next interview.

How does it work?

Read more...

4 ‘WOW’ Factors to Help You Get the Job

Watch this video to see how 4 different job candidates did something special (that you could do, too) and got the offer. You've got to see it...these were some truly great ideas, and I know they will help you.

If you would like help or additional information on using these techniques to get the offer, click the links below:

file3161278556475

The Words You Should Never Say in Your Job Interview

fear

Think about the kind of impression you want to convey to your interviewer or hiring manager:  experience, ability, and confidence.

You communicate your experience and ability with a winning resume, a brag book, a 30/60/90-day plan, and high-quality references.

You communicate your confidence in your physical presentation, your body language, and what you say and how you say it.

Good communication skills are essential.  Sounding even remotely uncertain of your ability to do the job you’re interviewing for (and do it well) is an interview killer.  No employer is going to hire someone who isn’t even sure himself if he is capable.  What phrases convey uncertainty?

Read more...

How to Answer Behavioral Interview Questions – Use the STAR Format

file3301274449947Employers want to know about more than just your skills and experience--they want to know how you'll get along day-to-day.  How will you react in stressful situations?  What will you do when a customer gets cranky, or there's some issue with the product?

One way for hiring managers to get to that information is to use behavioral interview questions that try to uncover how you have reacted in similar situations, or that set up a theoretical problem to see how you would go about solving it.

Both types of behavioral (or situational) interview questions show how you think, which can be much more informative for a hiring manager than asking about your greatest weakness.

The easiest and most effective way to answer Behavioral Interview Questions is to use the STAR format.

Read more...

Fantastic Phone Interview Tips You’ve Never Thought Of

Phone-Woman4If you got the phone interview, you are just a few minutes away from getting the face-to-face interview--IF you handle those few minutes well.  Think about your phone interview in a fresh way and stand out from everyone else they talk to and get your face-to-face interview!

No matter what job you do--technical, administrative, education, operations, manufacturing, data-based, marketing, or sales--the process of getting the job is basically a sales process.  You are the 'product' that's for sale, or hire; the hiring manager, or interviewer, is the 'customer'.  In this analogy,  you are also the sales rep, because you are convincing that hiring manager, or employer, to buy your product (hire you for the job).

If your job search is like a sales process, interviews are like sales calls.  If you look at what successful sales reps do to sell their products, and apply at least some of those principles to your job search and interviews, you will be successful in 'selling' yourself for the job.

Here is a great article to help you from Mark Hunter, The Sales Hunter.  Mark gives you outstanding phone sales tips to use when contacting customers that work very well for also speaking with hiring managers (or Human Resources) in your phone interviews.

I have posted the article in its entirety, but I have italicized the tips that will be most useful and effective for you:

Read more...

30-60-90-Day Plan: How to Create and Use It to Knock Their Socks Off in the Job Interview

Colorful striped socksWhat's your biggest job interview problem?

  • You don't have the perfect background or quite enough experience?
  • You don't stand out as the "wow" candidate?
  • You get lots of interviews, but no offers?

The easiest and best way to get past those very common obstacles is to write a 30-60-90-day plan and bring it to your interview--that's the straightforward, honest truth.  It works if you're a brand-new graduate and it works if you're a seasoned veteran of your career.

I've used it myself (and got 5 offers the last time I was in the job search) and I've had my candidates use it for years--because it gets them hired.

Once you use one of these plans, you will never go to another interview without one.  They're that good. We have a ton of information about 30-60-90-day plans on this blog you can use to write one, but here are two to start with:

Or, if you want to just cut to the chase and get it done (or even if you just need the confidence of an expert who's got your back), check out our 30-60-90-day plan samples and templates that come with all my tips and tricks for writing and presenting these plans to make you very comfortable using this tool in an interview:

  • 30-60-90-Day Action Plans for everyone else (people always ask if these plans are worth it if you're not in sales, but actually they're even more impressive outside of sales jobs)

These plans really do work.  You will communicate better and sell yourself for the job.

They give you an enormous boost over "you don't have enough experience."

They polish you so that you outshine every other candidate.

They get you job offers.

Create a 30-60-90-Day Plan for your next interview and you'll see what I mean.

TEST – SDM on How to Answer Interview Questions Series

How To Answer Interview Questions Series

Table of Contents

  1. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q1 -- Are you overqualified for this job?

  2. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q2 -- Are you willing to relocate?

  3. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q3 -- Describe a time when your work was criticized and how you handled it.

  4. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q4 -- Describe a time when your workload was heavy and how you handled it.

  5. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q5 -- Describe how you would handle a situation if you were required to finish multiple tasks by the end of the day, and there was no conceivable way that you could finish them.

  6. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q6 -- Describe your work style.

  7. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q7 -- Describe yourself to me in one word.

  8. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q8 -- Do you prefer working in a team or alone?

  9. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q9 -- Give me a specific example of a time when you had to conform to a policy with which you did not agree.

  10. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q10 -- Give me an example of a time that you felt you went above and beyond the call of duty at work.


  1. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q11 -- Have you ever been on a team where someone was not pulling their own weight? How did you handle it?

  2. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q12 -- Have you ever had difficulty working with a supervisor/manager?

  3. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q13 -- How can you apply your specific skills to help the organization achieve sustainable growth and generate revenues?

  4. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q14 -- How to Answer Interview Questions - Q2 -- How did you deal with the situation the last time your boss chastised you or strongly or disagreed with a statement, a plan or a decision you made?

  5. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q15 -- How do I know that you still have the “fire in the belly” to do this job?

  6. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q16 -- How do you deal with difficult customers?

  7. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q17 -- How do you deal with stressful situations?

  8. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q18 -- How do you evaluate success?

  9. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q19 -- How do you handle stress and pressure?

  10. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q20 -- How do you rate yourself as a professional?


  1. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q21 -- How does this position fit in with the career path you envision for yourself?

  2. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q22 -- How have you responded to a colleague who is putting you down at work?

  3. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q23 -- How long will it take for you to make a significant contribution?

  4. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q24 -- How long would you plan to stay with us?

  5. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q25 -- How much did / do you make?

  6. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q26 -- How was your working relationship with your previous supervisor?

  7. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q27 -- How would you feel about working for someone who knows less than you?

  8. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q28 -- How would you go about establishing your credibility quickly with the team?

  9. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q29 -- I noticed that you are applying for a position that is not as senior as you past positions. Why would you consider a job that is, in effect, a demotion for you?

  10. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q30 -- If we hire you, what will we know about you a year down the road?


  1. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q31 -- If you could be any animal which one would you be and why?

  2. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q32 -- If you could relive the last 10 years of your life, what would you do differently?

  3. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q33 -- If you had to choose one, would you consider yourself a big-picture person or a detail-oriented person?

  4. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q34 -- If you were a tree, what kind of a tree would you be?

  5. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q35 -- Is there anything I haven’t told you about the company that you would like to know?

  6. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q36 -- Situational Response Question:  An airplane landed in the parking lot. What would you do?

  7. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q37 -- Tell me about a time when you disagreed with your boss about a way that something should be done. How did you handle that?

  8. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q38 -- Tell me about a time when you faced a difficult situation with a co-worker.

  9. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q39 -- Tell me about a time when you failed.

  10. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q40 -- Tell me about a time when you had to give someone difficult feedback. How did you handle it?


  1. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q41 -- Tell me about yourself.

  2. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q42 -- Tell me your life story (more of your personal history).

  3. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q43 -- Tell us about a failed project.

  4. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q44 -- Tell us about a time that you went against corporate directives. Why? How did it turn out?

  5. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q45 -- There's no right or wrong answer, but if you could be anywhere in the world right now, where would you be?

  6. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q46 -- We are looking for someone with experience…or, You don’t have enough experience—why should we hire you?

  7. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q47 -- What are some of your greatest and/or proudest accomplishments?

  8. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q48 -- What are your advantages and DISADVANTAGES?

  9. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q49 -- What are your hobbies?

  10. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q50 -- What are your least favorite things to do in your role as a XXXX?


  1. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q51 -- What are your pet peeves?

  2. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q52 -- What are your salary expectations?

  3. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q53 -- What are your workplace values?

  4. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q54 -- What did you earn at your last job?

  5. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q55 -- What did you like or dislike about your previous jobs? 

  6. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q56 -- What do people most often criticize about you?

  7. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q57 -- What do you consider your most significant accomplishment?

  8. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q58 -- What do you expect from a supervisor?

  9. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q59 -- What do you know about this company?

  10. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q60 -- What do you wish you’d done better?


  1. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q61 -- What excites you and scares you about this position?

  2. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q62 -- What have you been doing since you got laid off?

  3. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q63 -- What have you learned from your mistakes?

  4. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q64 -- What is good customer service?

  5. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q65 -- What is your greatest weakness?

  6. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q66 -- What is your ideal job?

  7. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q67 -- What is your least favorite managerial task?

  8. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q68 -- What kind of money would you be interested in making?

  9. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q69 -- What makes you unique? 

  10. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q70 -- What motivates you?


  1. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q71 -- What questions do you have for us?

  2. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q72 -- What salary are you looking for?

  3. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q73 -- What type of work environment do you prefer?

  4. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q74 -- What was the last book you read?

  5. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q75 -- What was your least favorite part of your last job?

  6. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q76 -- What was your most difficult work experience and how did you deal with it?

  7. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q77 -- What were the major challenges of your last job and how did you handle them?

  8. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q78 -- What were your responsibilities in your last job?

  9. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q79 -- What will you contribute to this job?

  10. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q80 -- What will you do if you don’t get this position?


  1. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q81 -- What would you do first at this job?

  2. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q82 -- What would your friends tell me about you?

  3. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q83 -- What would your line manager say was the area you needed most development in?

  4. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q84 -- What you can do to make this company better?

  5. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q85 -- Where do you see yourself in 5 years?

  6. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q86 -- Who was your best boss and who was your worst?

  7. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q87 -- Why are you looking to leave your current job?

  8. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q88 -- Why did you freelance for so long?

  9. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q89 -- Why did you leave your last position?

  10. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q90 -- Why did you take a job that seems to be outside of your career path?


  1. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q91 -- Why do you believe you are the best fit for this position?

  2. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q92 -- Why do you have a big gap in your employment history?

  3. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q93 -- Why do you think you can manage a team without any prior managerial experience?

  4. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q94 -- Why do you want to join this company?

  5. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q95 -- Why do you want to switch from an academic field to business/industry?

  6. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q96 -- Why do you want to work for someone else after owning your own business / freelancing?

  7. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q97 -- Why have you been out of work for so long?

  8. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q98 -- Why have you changed jobs so frequently over the past X years?

  9. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q99 -- Why haven't you been promoted?

  10. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q100 -- Why should we give you the job over the other candidates?  (Why should I hire you instead of someone else?)

  11. How to Answer Interview Questions - Q101 -- Why would you accept a lesser salary than what you made before?  (Won’t you jump ship when a better offer comes along?)


Click to expand question sets, then click individual questions to read the post.

Think about job interviews. You’re so thrilled when you get the call. The interview prep work is exciting because you’re getting to know what you hope is your new company. You get your resume, your brag book, and your 30-60-90-day plan all lined out, and you choose what to wear. You map out the route and get there a healthy few minutes early. You greet your interviewer with a smile and a firm handshake, and then you start The Conversation.

Everything hinges on your job interview questions and answers.  Your answers are THE major deciding factor in whether or not you get asked back for a second interview or get the job offer. Not to worry…Career Confidential is here to help.

I am thrilled to announce that we are launching a new blog article series: How to Answer Interview Questions.

In fact, we are publishing 101 job interview questions and answers in a brand new, open-access series for you. These are typical but tough interview questions that most candidates are asked at some point in their interview process. We will tell you how to answer just about every interview question possible…from the most common standard interview questions to the weird, “personality” interview questions.

But we’re not just giving you the answer to parrot...I don't want you to sound like someone who Googled “how to answer interview questions.” (Although I will give you ideas.)

Job Interview Questions and Answers

Would you like some free training on  How to Answer Interview Questions? 

FREE Training - How to Answer Interview Questions



I’m going to address one question per article and coach you through how to approach your answer strategically and construct the best answer possible FOR YOU.

I’ll tell you things like:

  • What hiring managers are REALLY asking with each question...
  • How to think strategically about your best answer.
  • What kinds of things you should always include in your answer.
  • Some sample job interview answers to get you started.

Without a doubt, this series is unlike anything you've ever seen before.  My entire 15+ years of experience in sales, management, recruiting, and career coaching is behind every answer.

By the time you absorb 101 questions and answers, you will:

It's all just one part of Career Confidential's mission to transform you into the top candidate for the job.  We want you to get the job you want fast.  Please explore our site to see everything we have to offer to get you to your goal.

Not getting our newsletter yet? Sign up below to get Peggy’s best tips.

 

How to End Your Face-to-Face Job Interview and Get the Offer!

If you want to boost your odds of getting the job offer by 30%- 40%,
AND ask me your most pressing job search or interview question...

Then join me on MONDAY, APRIL 7, 2014 at 1pm EDT for an

Interview Training Webinar and LIVE Q&A Session!

This free session will:

  • Show you how to get the job offer in your NEXT interview
  • Give you SOLUTIONS you can use now
  • Start your week off on a high note!

And, you get a Free Gift for your resume, just for signing up for the webinar.

This is going to be fantastic....don't miss it!

>>  Register Now <<

 

 

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