Recruitment | Executive Search

4 Popular graduate interview questions

So, you found the job you want, you’ve devised a winning CV and you’ve been called up for an interview! Exciting! But also frightening? Selling your skills face to face, over the phone or via your laptop screen can be a nerve-racking experience. But with the right preparation and research beforehand you can answer each question with confidence. If you’re a recent graduate looking for a job, make sure you go through these 4 most asked interview questions for graduates, and how to answer them.

Tell me about yourself

This interview question is often used to break the ice and see how personable you can be. Be careful not to drone on endlessly for this question. It’s easy to get caught up in your back story and lose track of time. A safe answer is to give a brief overview that covers where you grew up, where you went to school, why you chose your major, any internship experience you have, and why you’re applying for the job.

Where do you see yourself in 5 years?

Long term plans are important to an employer because they want to know just exactly how committed you are to the job. To answer this interview question, explain where you are currently and what progression you hope to make in order to grow. This can be related to building upon current skills, experience and even industry knowledge to help you excel. Remember keep it career related and relevant to the role you have applied for!

What is your greatest achievement?

To say your greatest achievement was getting into university or, or getting your degree, will do nothing to distinguish you from all the other graduates. Unless you have had to contend with exceptional difficulties to gain your academic qualifications – such as illness or major family problems – try to say something different that will make you stand out. This doesn’t have to be extreme, ideally, it should give evidence of skills relevant to the job such as communication, initiative, teamwork, organising or determination

Why did you choose to study that degree at that university?

In this interview question the interviewer is listening for your evidence of decision-making, planning and logical reasoning skills. So even if you just choose the closest or cheapest university, talk about what you like about the university, the courses offered and bring up ways in which the university is unique.

For inexperienced graduates, the interview process is comparable to climbing a mountain – daunting and intimidating. But like reaching the top, the rewards are life-changing. It’s best to keep these very basic but very important tips in mind as it is the implementation of these fundamentals that make or break your chances.

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