Answering Behavioral Job Interview Questions

Many interviewers take an interview approach that focuses on asking questions that prompt the candidate to describe a specific work-related situation. Since the way a candidate previously acted in a situation can often be the best indicator of future behavior, recruiters and hiring managers regularly choose this interviewing method.

Behavior interview questions can give interviewers a solid basis of your “soft skills” such as communication, decision-making, customer service, management, adaptability, and teamwork.While it’s hard to plan for every behavioral question you might be asked, the key is having a solid outline for these kinds of questions that gives a thorough and thoughtful answer. Typically, the best way to answer a behavioral question is to describe:

  1. The situation or task you were faced with
  2. The action you took, while explaining your thought process
  3. The result or outcome of the situation based on your action.

If you’re not exactly sure of what a behavioral interview question might be, here are a few examples:

  • How do you determine priority of projects when scheduling your time?
  • Tell me about a time when you had to deal with an irate customer. What was the problem and how did you handle the situation?
  • Describe a time when you had to go above and beyond the call of duty to get a job done.
  • How do you involve your manager and/or others when you make a decision?
  • Describe a time when you were faced with a difficult problem. What did you do? What was your thought process? What was the outcome?

What behavioral questions have you been asked in an interview? How did you answer them?