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Traditional Interview Questions

Many interviewers may use a traditional approach in which they ask you to elaborate on your resume content and evaluate your own capabilities. They may use open-ended questions such as “Tell me about yourself ” or closed questions such as “Are you willing to travel?” Often the questions ask you to offer perceptions of yourself and your goals. Some sample questions include:Responses that offer examples, the motivation behind goals and decisions, and connections between your background/qualifications and the employer's need will have the most effective impact. Some sample questions include:

Tell me how you organize your day,
When do you do your best/worst work?
How many tasks do you like to tackle at one time?
How many hours a day do you put into your work?
What are good reasons to postpone things?
Oral Communication
What is the worst communication problem you have experienced?
Tell me about the preparation for and results of meetings you have been responsible for conducting.
Written Communication Skills
What kind of writing have you done? Give me an example. How do you approach it?
How do you feel about the writing of reports in contrast with collecting or analyzing the data?
What report that you are currently preparing (or have recently prepared) is the most challenging? Why?
Can you think of a recent problem in which old solutions wouldn't work?
How did you solve the problem?
What is the most imaginative or innovative thing you have done?
Under what conditions do you display imagination and innovation in your work?
What kinds of problems have people recently called on you to solve? Tell me about what you devised.
Motivation for Work
What personal factors do you consider most important in evaluating yourself or your success?
Why did you choose this career?
Can you give me examples of work-related experiences that you felt were satisfying/dissatisfying?
What about your career choice most turns you on?
What do you like best about your current/past job?
What do you like least about your current/past job?
Describe when you worked the hardest and felt the greatest sense of achievement.
What are some recent responsibilities you have taken on? Why did you assume these responsibilities?
Work Standards
How do you define doing a good job?
What are your standards of success in your job/class work?
What do you consider the most important contribution you have made at Lehigh?
How many times have you missed a deadline? What were the causes of each?
Career Ambition
What have you accomplished in the line of self-development during the past year?
What are your career goals for the next five years? How do you expect to accomplish your goals?
Tell me about a new idea which was considerably different than the standard procedure that you recently implemented.
What approach did you take to get others to go along with the idea?
How do you schedule your time? Set priorities?
What do you do when your time schedule is upset by unforeseen circumstances?
What is your procedure for keeping track of matters requiring your attention?
Describe how you determine what constitutes top priorities.
What were your objectives for the last year? Were they achieved?
Describe a typical day/week.
Use of Delegation
Describe the type of decision making that you delegate to others.
When did you have a major problem requiring help? What action did you take?
Why did you ask particular people to assist you?
Problem Analysis
Describe the biggest problem that you have faced within the last six months. How did you handle it?
Can you give me two examples of good decisions you have made in the last six months? What were the alternatives?
Why were they good decisions?
What is the toughest decision you have had to make. Tell me about it.
What alternative did you consider?
What decision did you have to think the longest on before you decided what to do? Tell me about it.
Why was it difficult?
What was the last major problem that you were confronted with? What action did you take on it?
What was the last decision you faced? How long did it take for you to decide what to do?
What kinds of decisions do you tend to make rapidly, and which ones do you take more time on? Give me some examples.
What was your biggest disappointment? How did you cope with it?
How do you pick yourself up after a disappointment?
How long does it take you to feel comfortable in a new job?
How do you go about orienting yourself to a new job?
Technical Translation
What kinds of writing did you do at Lehigh? Who was the audience?
What kinds of reports did you do at Lehigh? How frequently?
What is the most difficult report you have ever written? Why?
Do you have any rules that you follow in writing reports? What are they?
Have you ever made a decision that affected others as well as yourself? What was the outcome?
Have you ever experienced a problem at Lehigh caused by a decision made unilaterally by someone else?
How did you feel? Did you do anything about it?