Behavioral Questions in Interviews

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Anonymous User
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Behavioral Questions in Interviews

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Feb 15, 2012 1:44 pm

How the hell do you answer behavioral questions? For example:

Tell me about a time you overcame adversity?
- Well I work my ass off to avoid putting myself in adverse situations in the first place. I'm fortunate to have never had to work my way out of the hood or anything like that so...?

Anonymous User
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Re: Behavioral Questions in Interviews

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Feb 15, 2012 3:48 pm

These annoyed the hell out of me the first time I got asked. What I did:

For each item of work experience and for each leadership position on an extracurricular I had listed on my resume, I came up with a story. Like, when I worked in retail and had to deal with a hilariously irrational customer. I could fit that story into a lot of behavioral questions (time you had to work with others, time you faced a challenge, etc.). So I had 4 or 5 such stories, one of which would be pretty relevant no matter what they asked, and each time I got a behavioral question I was able to tell a fun story and then pivot to talking about that resume point. After a couple times, the hardest part is making it sound not-rehearsed.

Good luck!

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20130312
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Re: Behavioral Questions in Interviews

Postby 20130312 » Wed Feb 15, 2012 4:00 pm

I routinely make up stories to answer these questions.

I'm not kidding.

bdubs
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Re: Behavioral Questions in Interviews

Postby bdubs » Wed Feb 15, 2012 4:15 pm

InGoodFaith wrote:I routinely make up stories to answer these questions.

I'm not kidding.


Don't make things up, you will get caught when someone asks detailed follow up questions.

Not all of your life experiences will be directly on point. It's OK to exaggerate certain aspects of your story to make it fit the question better, but completely making something up is a bad idea.

What kind of "adversity" do you think they want to hear about? They don't want someone who is able to work their way out of gutter, only someone who can handle a demanding client and f*ck up by a team member or junior staff person. Find something in your experience that fits that type of adversity.

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bgdddymtty
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Re: Behavioral Questions in Interviews

Postby bgdddymtty » Wed Feb 15, 2012 4:29 pm

Look up the STAR method. Situation, task, action, resolution. When you look for experiences that will make for good answers to these types of questions, think about what kinds of attributes employers are likely looking for. Tailor your stories accordingly.

Anonymous User
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Re: Behavioral Questions in Interviews

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Feb 15, 2012 5:11 pm

Don't make things up, you will get caught when someone asks detailed follow up questions.

Not all of your life experiences will be directly on point. It's OK to exaggerate certain aspects of your story to make it fit the question better, but completely making something up is a bad idea.

What kind of "adversity" do you think they want to hear about? They don't want someone who is able to work their way out of gutter, only someone who can handle a demanding client and f*ck up by a team member or junior staff person. Find something in your experience that fits that type of adversity.


I agree- you're better off modifying, exaggerating, or extending an existing story than making something out of whole cloth.

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20130312
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Re: Behavioral Questions in Interviews

Postby 20130312 » Wed Feb 15, 2012 6:02 pm

I actually spin my stories very well and have never been caught. Got a quick mind for the follow up questions. Sometimes I wonder if I have a gift for being a pathological liar.

azntwice
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Re: Behavioral Questions in Interviews

Postby azntwice » Wed Feb 15, 2012 8:35 pm

basically what the poster above said: look at your resume, think about stories that show you have leadership skills, etc. the most important thing about behavioral question is that you prepare for all kinds of questions: they will ask questions that ask you to place yourself in both a good (e.g. tell me about a time you introduced a creative solution) and negative (tell me about a time when you made a mistake) light. the trick is to spin the latter so that it's not such a horrible situation at all and to show that you corrected the mistake/whatever and are now smarter about such things.




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