What are the Best Mock Interview Questions?

Donn Saylor

The best mock interview questions gather information regarding an applicant's work history and ethic, education, personality, and future plans and goals. When readying for an interview, it is a smart move to be prepared for an interviewer's questions. Though there is no across-the-board standard for the questions a potential employer might ask, there are several questions that pop up time and again during a typical job interview.

Mock interviews may help reduce a job candidate's anxiety during the actual interviewing process.
Mock interviews may help reduce a job candidate's anxiety during the actual interviewing process.

When learning how to interview, the first thing an applicant should learn is proper interview etiquette. Questions that arise during the course of the interview should be given thoughtful, complete responses. One-word answers or vague replies may indicate an applicant is ill-prepared for the interview and, by extension, the demands of the job for which he or she is applying. It is equally important that a candidate not to be too meticulous or long-winded in his or her interview answers. For these reasons, mock interview questions come in handy during the preparation process.

Some of the best mock interview questions involve asking about one's education and work history.
Some of the best mock interview questions involve asking about one's education and work history.

"Tell me about yourself" is an excellent mock interview question. This inquiry may sound easy to answer, but it's actually rather complicated. The interviewer is not necessarily looking for a condensed version of an applicant's life story. Instead, the interviewer is seeking a brief rundown — two or three minutes at most — of a contender's personality and qualifications for the job. This question could easily be translated as, "What makes you the best candidate for the job?"

Two more mock interview questions that come up often in real-life interview situations are "What is your biggest strength?" and "What is your biggest weakness?" Again, these are trickier questions to answer than they might at first appear. An interviewer is looking for an applicant's strongest attributes and those qualities about which he or she feels most confident; the interviewer is not seeking boastful or immodest replies. When addressing weaknesses, the interviewer wants to see if a candidate has the ability to honestly asses his or her own job performance and is in possession of a level of awareness about issues he or she may need to work on.

When practicing mock interview questions, it is always a wise idea for the interviewee to have a mental checklist of his or her education, degrees, and recent work history. A possible employer will likely ask about jobs and educational institutions listed on a resume or application. Being able to elaborate on any of these bullet points is a definite asset during a job interview.

An interviewer may also inquire as to a contender's future plans and goals. This line of questioning can take a few different guises. When choosing mock interview questions, the following are excellent examples: "Where do you see yourself in ten years?", "How long do you plan on staying in this position?", and "What are you looking for in your next position?" Each of these questions give an interviewer a clear picture of a candidate's personal and professional goals and how these goals may, or may not, fit within the aims of the company.

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