6 Interview Questions About Experience (With Sample Answers) walk
During an interview, you can show your personality, talk about your skills, and talk about your background, qualifications, and why you want a certain job, industry, or career. Questions about your experience can help hiring managers picture you doing the job or figure out how well you might fit into the culture of a company or group. Practicing answers to interview questions can help you feel more confident and come up with good answers that could get you another interview or a job offer.
This article looks at interview questions and answers about your experience, as well as ways to give a full answer, to help you get ready for your next interview.
Examples of how to answer questions about work history
During an interview, employers often ask about your level of experience to see if you’re a good fit for the job. Experience-based questions could be about general topics or directly refer to information from your resume or cover letter. Here are some examples of questions and answers to help you prepare for an interview with a hiring manager who wants to know more about your experience in a certain industry or position before deciding whether or not to hire you:
1. What are the two best things you did at your last job?
This question gives the interviewer a chance to find out what you think is a successful accomplishment and how you got there. You could tell the employer the date, time, number, or percentage of a goal, task, or result to show how well you did. If what you did helped solve a certain problem, you might want to talk about how it happened.
Example: “Our department had trouble with flight attendants who didn’t show up when they were supposed to and who left quickly. This made it hard to run the business during holidays and times when a lot of people were traveling, and it cut into our annual training budget. My team and I looked at patterns of callouts and repeated absences, and we did a survey to find out what our flight attendants thought of our policies. Based on what we found, we suggested that people who didn’t have any unplanned absences get seasonal bonuses and that people whose absences were approved based on operational needs get unpaid personal leaves. We saw a 25% drop in unplanned absences, a rise in employee retention, and a $50,000 savings in the training budget in less than a year.
I’m also proud of the fact that I updated the website that everyone in our company uses. Our intranet didn’t have enough ways for people to get involved or make it easy to use, so we worked with another company to make a website that is easy to use, collaborative, and interactive. We started with the most important tools and functions and then added things that weren’t there before. In the end, the project was finished on time and on budget, and the number of people who engaged with it was 10 times higher than on our old site.”
2.Can you tell me more about the “Compensation Review Communications Project” you put on your resume?
An interviewer might ask you about projects, tasks, or goals you listed on your resume to find out how involved you were, how good you were at doing the work, and how it relates to the job you’re applying for. Think about using numbers to describe the project and show what you did and how you could do it again in a different organization.
Example: “Every six months, the pay of front-line workers is looked at again. Executive leaders and elected peers work together to decide on pay raises and other pay issues. I was in charge of all employee communications during the eight-month process. This included everything from peer elections and team introductions to an email that summed up what was talked about at each meeting. Once the teams turned in their compensation results, I led a team of two people to make a digital booklet that explained the pay changes, additional incentives, work rule changes, and other compensation elements using graphics, charts, and clear, interesting language.”
3. What did you like and dislike about your last job?
During an interview, a question like this is meant to find out what you think, what kind of person you are, and what kind of work environment might be best for you. Most interviewers want a sincere answer, but you should keep the answer focused on you and not blame former coworkers or companies for the parts of the job you didn’t like. For instance, you could say that you like a structured workplace instead of saying that the people in charge of your office are bad at their jobs.
Example: “I’m happy I got to work at ABC Publishing. It has helped me improve as a writer and communicator, especially because editors gave me feedback on my work. They gave useful feedback to help you improve your formatting and style, and they also gave encouragement to keep our spirits up and help us reach our goals. We had daily, weekly, and monthly quotas for what we had to do. This is common in copywriting. But when I didn’t meet them every time, I felt less sure of my work and productivity.”
4.Have you ever been in charge of a group of people?
Even if the job you’re interviewing for doesn’t involve managing people, you might be asked about your experience leading a team. A hiring manager can often tell from your answer if you have leadership skills or want to move up in your career. Even if you haven’t led a team much before, you might want to answer honestly. It’s also fine if your leadership skills come from any relevant part of your work history. For example, you might lead a group of people if you do volunteer work or community service.
Example: “We made a private social media group for our department at my first job. Nearly 2,000 people from all of our offices in different parts of the country joined. It was an important way to talk to each other, and it let us both talk. As the project’s leader, I not only oversaw the team of moderators and administrators, but I also led discussions on the social page, especially when comments got too personal.”
5. Since your last job, how have your skills or experience grown?
This kind of question about your experience can show an employer how well you can learn from your mistakes or successes. In your answer, be sure to say what skills you have and how you learned them, as well as how they will help you in this new job.
Example: “I got better at managing my time and keeping things in order at my last job. When I went from being a reporter for a newspaper to a reporter for TV, I went from having one deadline a day to having six. It gave me the chance to use tried-and-true writing techniques and focus on how to tell a story in less time, especially when breaking news meant I had to think on my feet. I took better notes during interviews, so when I went back to look at the footage, it was easier to find sound bites. I’m sure that my skills would make me a good press secretary who can hold effective press briefings on time and give good answers as the company’s spokesperson.”
6. Tell me about a time when you had to make a hard decision and how it turned out.
With this kind of question, a possible employer can find out how good you are at making decisions. The best way to answer questions that ask you to think about a certain situation is often to use the STAR method, which is made up of these four parts.
- Tell people what they need to know about the task or experience.
- Task: Explain your responsibilities.
- Action: Tell what you did and how you handled the problem.
- Tell what happened because of it.
Think about being honest, thorough, and explaining what happened and why to the interviewer. This will show the interviewer what you went through and how you dealt with it.
Example: “I worked on the launch of a place where electric cars can get charged. The team moved up the original deadline because they wanted to release the product before a competitor. When we looked at the results of battery tests, we kept seeing a problem with the parts that make the battery burn, but we couldn’t figure out why. I was worried that our competitor would beat us to the market, but I couldn’t risk safety. I told the project manager what the test results were. He gave us more money to test more, and in the end, before any of the devices went to stores, we found the problem.”
How to talk about your experience in an interview
Here are some more tips that can help you prepare for your interview and know how to answer questions about your experience:
How to find a job interview
Whether the interview is in person or online, you should think about how to look clean, well-groomed, and professional. What you wear to a job interview can show how confident, capable, and interested you are in the job, or it can help you get along with the person who is interviewing you.
Review your application documents
Think about reading your cover letter and resume to find relevant examples of your work experience that you can talk about in an interview. Most of the time, hiring managers want to hear about your most recent accomplishments and work experience. But if you did something great at a job you had before, you can talk about it.
Try out your answers by saying them out loud.
Try practicing your answers out loud after you’ve decided what parts of your background and experience are important to talk about in an interview. This can help you feel better about yourself and learn how to say things better.
Don’t just answer yes or no.
Some questions about your experience may only need a yes or no answer, like whether or not you know how to use a certain computer program. Use these questions to explain more about what you said in your answer.
For example, saying “Yes, I taught myself how to use that program after hearing about it at an industry conference” shows that you are self-motivated, interested in learning new things, and know how to use a required system.