Naturally, every potential employer wants to know what you will be like on the job, and if you will fit in with the company. For that reason, popular interview questions include inquiries about your work style.
The reasons for these questions can be misjudged by job candidates, who then give an answer that doesn’t help sell them for the job. You need to know the best ways to answer interview questions about your work style.
What is your work style?
Sometimes they’ll come right out and ask directly about your work style. Many candidates make a mistake by answering this with a personality trait. For instance, they may say, “I’m calm and laid back,” or “I’m driven to succeed.”
What you want to aim for instead is to show how you are a good fit for the job. Think about what your best qualities are and how they will make you successful in this role.
For instance, “I’m incredibly organized,” or “I’m a great multi-tasker” are both good responses, depending on the job. You could point out that you are a good planner, or that you work especially well under pressure. Maybe you work best on your own, or maybe you’re a strong team player. Be strategic and think of one or two things that make you the person to hire for that role.
Do you prefer working in a team or alone?
This is a very common question. The easy answer is to say that you are comfortable with both, but it can be less than believable if you say so. You can give a much stronger (and more persuasive) answer if you give it with that specific job in mind. Do some research on the job itself as well as how that company structures that role, and you can have a much more significant impact.
For instance, if you know you’ll be working alone most of the time, you can say, “I prefer working alone, but I think that working with a team on occasion is nice, because it boosts my creativity.” If you’ll be mostly working with a team, say, “I like working in a group setting, but sometimes it’s nice to have sole responsibility for a project.” Keep in mind the primary working conditions for that job, while remembering that sometimes you will be required to step outside of your comfort zone.
But don’t stop there…after you give your answer, ask a question: “How much time do you think that I will be spending working alone vs. working with a team?” This keeps the conversation going and gives you information you’ll need when evaluating your job offer.
Pay attention to these subtle differences in wording and tone that make the difference between an OK answer and a stand out answer that impresses them and gets you the offer.
Go one step further and demonstrate your outstanding work style by showing them your 30-60-90-day plan for how you will approach this job to be successful from day one. Find out everything you can about this job interview miracle tool, the 30 60 90 Day Plan.
About the author
Career Coach – Peggy McKee is an expert resource and a dedicated advocate for job seekers. Known as the Sales Recruiter from Career Confidential, her years of experience as a nationally-known recruiter for sales and marketing jobs give her a unique perspective and advantage in developing the tools and strategies that help job seekers stand head and shoulders above the competition. Peggy has been named #1 on the list of the Top 25 Most Influential Online Recruiters by HR Examiner, and has been quoted in articles from CNN, CAP TODAY, Yahoo! HotJobs, and the Denver Examiner.
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