Behavioral Job Interview Questions: What to Expect and How to Answer Them

August 18th, 2017

While a well-crafted résumé filled with relevant technical skills and tangible work experience is an important part of any job search, the interview remains the biggest factor in earning a job offer. Increasingly, companies use behavioral interview questions to get a window into your past performance, with an eye towards predicting how you’ll do with their firm. Handling behavioral questions successfully is a must if you want the IT job of your dreams.

What follows are a few insights and tips on how to handle these kinds of questions during an interview. As always, being prepared helps ensure a successful performance and ultimately a job offer.

Reviewing Your Professional History is a Must!

The night before the interview, spend an hour or two reviewing specific incidents in your work history that may come up when asked a behavioral question. This includes how you handled a certain situation, like when a project missed a deadline or failed in production. As noted earlier, they are trying to get a feel for your reaction in a similar situation in their office.

Take notes on a few of the highlights throughout your career to help you better remember them when asked. Try to match up these events with the expectations of the job for which you are interviewing. When answering, always focus on any lessons learned, especially when describing a negative incident.

Expect Follow-Up Questions

Behavioral questions tend to lead to a deeper discussion as the interviewer probes into this portion of your history. As such, it is reasonable to expect a follow-up question or two. Keep this in mind when preparing for the interview.

When taking notes during your interview preparation, detail the outcome of your efforts in addition to how you grew professionally because of the event in question. This helps you better answer the follow-up questions.

Stick to the Facts!

Honesty is especially important when answering behavioral questions. Expect the interviewer to take notes and verify your actions when contacting your references before extending a job offer. Don’t embellish the facts!

You needn’t get stressed out about the possibility of these kinds of questions on your next interview. Simply prepare like you normally would, but with more of a focus on those meaningful experiences peppered throughout your work history. Answer clearly and confidently after the initial question and during the follow-ups.

When you need additional advice on technology interview preparation, talk to the knowledgeable recruiters at Synerfac. As one of the top IT staffing agencies in Columbus and the rest of the Buckeye State, we can help take your tech career to a higher level. Connect with us as soon as possible.

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