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How do we know that you will be successful at this job?

Now, this is a good question. Whenever you are asked to predict the future, explain that you have been successful at everything you have ever done in the past, and there's no reason to believe that you won't be equally successful at this job. This kind of "predict the future" question will come up often. Just remember that the fallback answer is, "I've been successful before; therefore, I will be successful again." And if you have to shore up that statement, you can do it with success stories.

What is the most recent business lesson you have learned and how did you learn it?

You need to communicate that you are a life-long learner and demonstrate with what and how you have learned recently. Tell a story.

What specifically have you learned from the jobs that you held most recently?

Here, you talk about either a skill or a lesson that you learned. Intangible attributes like persistence, determination, earning respect, loyalty, etc., are great to bring out. Tell short, effective stories.

What made you choose to become a_?

It doesn't matter what you fill in the blank. You need to be able to say that you always had an inclination or a passion for some aspect of your profession. For instance, if it is a sales position, you want to talk about passion for communicating ideas, helping people solve their problems, etc. If it is a position requiring math skills like accounting, engineering, etc., you want to communicate that you always had a passion and love for numbers, science, making things work, etc. Maybe you had a mentor, parent, teacher, etc., who modeled the kind of profession that you got into. Whatever you do, do not communicate that you "stumbled" into your profession, it "chose" you, you couldn't find anything better to do, or you figured it was as good as any profession. Anything that communicates lack of direction, passion, or willy-nilly career decisions will not fly.

What can you contribute most to our organization?

Simple answer: "Over and above my excellent professional performance, as I've documented in previous positions, I work harder and am more committed to work than most employees. Next to my relationship with God and my family comes my work." It doesn't get any better than this answer. If you communicated well in the presentation portion of the interview, you will just reinforce what you have done in the past.

What do you know about our business?

What is our business's biggest challenge or problem? What trends do you see in our profession or industry? What do you know about our competition? What do you know about our company? These are all questions whose answers you should have arrived at in the research you did on the company and the business it is in. Even if you don't get the answers exactly right, when you demonstrate that you did extensive research on the organization and the business it is in, you will have answered the question properly. Most interviewing authorities really don't expect you to know their business too intimately, but they do want to see if you have expended any effort in finding out as much about them and their business as you can.

What would be your ideal work group?

How would you define a "good-fit" work environment? Do you work well with other people? Do you prefer to work alone or with other people? Do you require and appreciate lots of supervision? Do you work best with large groups or small groups? The answer to any questions like these (relating to working alone or with others, in large or small groups, etc.) needs to be answered with something like, "Well, I've had the good fortune of being able to work in all kinds of different environments. I have worked well alone, with others, with relaxed work environments, in tension-riddled work environments, in big groups, and in small groups. I find that, fortunately, I am adaptable and work well in just about any environment." If the interviewing authority wants specific examples of any one of these conditions make sure you have one or two stories from different jobs that you had to demonstrate your points.

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