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Job interviews: 8 cheating questions (and how to manage them successfully)

Job interviews: 8 cheating questions (and how to manage them successfully)

June 21, 2024

In an increasingly competitive society, the mission of finding and finding work can be one of the great challenges faced by both the unemployed and those who want to opt for a promotion.

This means, among other things, that the selection processes have to refine their methods to identify those characteristics that, although they could remain hidden for a time, would be a reason to discard someone.

Human resources and personnel selection technicians know this , and that's why in recent years they have started to make use of trap questions. Knowing how to identify and be aware of the weight they have in a job interview can help us communicate our candidacy in the best possible way, without falling into errors due to the doubts and nerves of the moment.

What are the trick questions for?

The objective behind the use of these questions is to explore the possible reasons why an application may not be interesting even if the curriculum vitae is formally suitable for the vacant position. In other words, it is intended that the candidate himself, indirectly and without realizing, give reasons why it does not fit with what is being sought, instead of asking him directly about these issues.

The cheating questions can also serve to lighten the bag of candidates before putting them to the test through evaluation methods that take more time and effort than the initial contact. In some way, they are part of the basic filter that takes place in all the selection processes, although they do not serve to collect simple and objective data but discourses that do not fit with the company's philosophy or with the ideal profile.

8 trap questions used in interviews

But, What are the most commonly used trap questions in job interviews? And, equally importantly: how can we respond appropriately to convince the staff selection team?

1. What was the biggest mistake you made in your previous job?

Those responsible for carrying out the selection of personnel are aware that no worker is perfect, and that most likely your work life is full of more or less large and notorious failures. But nevertheless, they are interested in knowing what is your vision on the subject .

How to manage it

The best thing to do is to admit responsibility for the error that is being talked about , without diverting the subject too much of the conversation towards the mistakes made by others and that could trigger your own error.

2. Why did you leave your previous job?

This cheating question serves, first of all, to have information about your previous jobs and your motivations when working on them . However, it also has a hidden side to put us to the test: it leaves us in a situation where we can lie about what happened, or to speak badly about the company in which we worked.

How to manage it

There is no single way to answer this question well, and the best option will depend on each case, but It is necessary to bear in mind that speaking badly about previous employers may be a reason not to pass the selection . If we really left that job because the conditions or personal treatment were not good, this should be communicated in the most neutral and neutral way possible, without showing revanchism in the explanations given.

3. Why do you want to change companies?

This question It serves to explore your motivations and evaluate your degree of commitment to companies . When you answer it, indirectly you will be communicating what things you do not want in your new job.

How to manage it

The best way to prepare this question is, simply, Inform yourself before about the characteristics of the company and the competencies, functions and responsibilities associated with the job you aspire to.

4. Why have you been without work for so long?

This cheating question serves to explore the reasons why there has been a break in your life you work l, if there has been. This way you can know if you have just had bad luck or if you are a little proactive person, something that would be reflected in your way of looking for a job and also in the way you work once employed.

In addition, we must bear in mind that this question may appear even if this temporary parenthesis without work has not occurred in recent months but some time ago.

How to manage it

If during that time that appears blank in your CV you have been doing other things that you have not written down because it is not important or not related to the sector in which the company works, you must communicate it.Although they are personal projects, unpaid jobs or hobbies that require a lot of involvement, They will serve to reflect that you are a more active person than what is reflected in your CV .

5. Do you prefer individual work or teamwork?

It's a pretty clear question, but it also has a hidden side reserved. Depending on how you respond, it may seem that you are always depending on others to work , or else you do not like having to relate to people.

How to manage it

You should bear in mind that although there are more and more specialized profiles, most organizations prefer that everyone has basic skills that allow them to work as a team, since this way they respond more quickly and effectively to changes and news in the market.

6. What can you contribute to this organization?

This question is a means by which you can talk about the competencies that you think are required in the workplace and about your vision of how your abilities fit with these. But the most important thing here is not what you say, but how you say it: what is your way of "selling yourself" and talking positively about yourself, and how you are able to argue something based on abstract concepts.

How to manage it

Here you must talk about those personal strengths that you have not included in your CV, as well as those that do appear in writing and believe that they are related to what is asked. It is important that you do not try to force your speech to make very specific competences or little related to the position seem very relevant, since that gives the image that you have little to offer and try to justify your candidacy in any way.

7. What are your faults or weaknesses?

This question serves to put you to the test in a situation that generates tension and nervousness , but it also serves to see to what extent you are able to identify those competences in which you are limping and what solutions you can provide so that this is not a major problem.

How to manage it

It is important that you go to the interview having thought about what measures you are able to implement in the next weeks or months to work those weak points. That way you will not have to improvise , something that would make your nervousness before this question increase.

8. What is, according to you, the appropriate salary for this work?

The question of "how much do you think you should charge?" It is a classic and one of the most tricky moments of the interview. You can make a mistake whether you answer too low or too high .

How to manage it

There is no correct way to answer this cheating question , and everything depends, in part, on luck. However, one way to avoid putting yourself in a compromised situation is to first ask to be told about the amounts that are being considered and that you can negotiate from there. You can also investigate on your own the days before the interview to know, approximately, how much is charged and from that data to decide where your cache is.

Top 10 Job Interview Questions & Answers (for 1st & 2nd Interviews) (June 2024).

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