Why are people rejected during an interview

Interview questions

by recruiting-tools.ch · Published · Updated

Experienced HR professionals use questions as a central communication tool, because whoever asks, leads! But which questions are really useful? We have put together an overview of the most popular interview questions for you.

What can questions?

  • Questions serve to obtain information
  • Questions open the dialogue and activate the partner
  • Questions liberate and give time to think
  • Questions prove qualification
  • Questions prevent people from talking past one another
  • Questions can provoke - and reveal hidden motives
  • Questions can cushion sensitive situations
  • Questions arouse sympathy
  • Questions "sell" better

Depending on the type of interview, some questions are more appropriate than others. You can find out which types of interview are suitable for job interviews here.

You can find ideas for answers in our guide.

Catalog of popular interview questions

About the person in general

  • Tell us a little about yourself.
  • What are your personal goals?
  • Why do you want to change?
  • What are your personal strengths and weaknesses?
  • What do you particularly enjoy?
  • What can you piss off with?
  • what are your hobbies?
  • What personal things are you particularly attached to?
  • Do you take an active part in cultural life?
  • What do you want to be seen as in society?
  • What do you appreciate about your friends or co-workers?
  • Which tasks do you like to do, which less?
  • What do you mean by teamwork?
  • Do you enjoy working in a team? Do you consider yourself a team player?
  • What type of person are you not getting along with?
  • How do you see yourself as a person in terms of character, skills, inclinations (strengths, weaknesses)?
  • How would you describe yourself?
  • Where do you see your limits?
  • How do you react to criticism from managers or employees?
  • Do you prefer to work with numbers or with words?
  • How do you behave under deadline pressure?
  • What training do you do?

You can find ideas for answers in our guide.

To the person's past

  • What have you achieved so far?
  • What was your most difficult professional problem and how did you solve it?
  • What were the most outstanding achievements in your career?
  • How do you deal with failures?
  • Where did you experience failures?
  • For what reasons did you change your job?
  • Which of your previous positions did you like best? Why?
  • Which (financially) attractive offer did you turn down for what reasons?
  • Why did you (not) like your manager in the last job?
  • What were the most important tasks in your last position?
  • When you look back, how do you see your current employer?

To the future of the person

  • What do you expect from the new position?
  • What are your professional / private goals?
  • What do you see yourself in 5 or 10 years? What position do you see yourself in then?
  • How will you expand your skills for your new position?
  • Do you have other positions in prospect? If so, which ones, and by when do you have to agree?
  • What other positions would you consider at the moment?
  • Why did you apply to us in particular?
  • Why are you interested in our company, our industry, this position?
  • Tell us what you know about our company.
  • Give me reasons why we should hire you of all people.
  • What do you think are the most interesting aspects of the position discussed here?
  • How would you describe the activity of the position?
  • How long do you estimate it will take you to familiarize yourself with it?
  • What does your manager have to be like? How do you lead your employees?
  • Why do you think you qualify for the position?
  • What could you contribute to the success of our company?
  • How long do you think you will stay with us?
  • If you compare your other offers with ours - what are our advantages and disadvantages for you?

You can find ideas for answers in our guide.

Basic and specialist knowledge

  • Which station in your career has shaped you most professionally?
  • What specialist knowledge have you already been able to use professionally?
  • Did you have a specialization during your studies?
  • What do you particularly enjoy doing professionally and why - not so much and why?
  • What role does your specialist knowledge play in your current position?
  • How do you rate your industry?
  • Technical questions about the position you are looking for
  • General knowledge
  • What are you particularly interested in?
  • What do you have to offer?
  • What music would you spend the evening with?
  • How do you keep up to date?
  • In your opinion, what are the most important inventions of the last few decades and why?
  • Do you have additional qualifications?
  • Questions on a current political issue.

Intelligence / willingness to learn

  • What is your strategy for the next five years?
  • If things don't go as usual, what do you do?
  • How important is advanced training for you?
  • What are the problem areas in your industry and what should be done to solve them?
  • How do you organize your working day?
  • Which products do you think the future belongs to and why?

Leadership skills

  • What criteria do you use to select employees?
  • When is teamwork necessary for you?
  • How do you deal with strong employees and how do you deal with weak ones?
  • What do your employees think of you as a rule?
  • What types of leadership styles do you know and which is yours?
  • How do you make decisions?
  • What is most likely to arouse aversions in you?
  • What do you do so that your employees fully identify with the company and the task?
  • How do you motivate?
  • In what situation do you fire employees?
  • Why is your office door open or closed?

You can find ideas for answers in our guide.

Unexpected questions

  • Can you lie
  • Are you loyal?
  • Would you like to have a glass of wine with me after work?
  • Why would you not hire yourself?
  • Why was your last boss dissatisfied with you?
  • You said you were ambitious - so you are also a man of money and power?
  • How do you fight back against bullying?
  • What do you do with employees who “saw on their chair”?
  • How do you stand up for a disabled employee who is made fun of?
  • All people have complexes - what complexes do you have?
  • What would be the worst that could happen to you?
  • How do you motivate yourself when the mood is occasionally gloomy?
  • Can you only express yourself in buzz words like globalization, focus or the like?
  • What resources do you use to make a quick career with us?
  • What could your job cost you?
  • Why is moral courage sometimes a dangerous thing in business?
  • What are the three most important properties, that you think a leader should have? (After listing) Do you have these qualities?
  • Why don't you earn more at your age?
  • What do you think of your last boss?
  • How would you rate me as an interviewer?
  • What significance does status, prestige, and recognition have for you
  • What would be the minimum wage you would get in line for?
  • What was the latest book you've read?

Sensitive questions about unemployment

  • Why did you become unemployed?
  • Are you not over or under qualified for this task?
  • Why did you get a mediocre testimonial here?

Admissible and Inadmissible Questions

Deliberately wrong or incomplete answers to questions usually entitle the employer to contest the employment contract due to fraudulent misrepresentation. The prerequisite is that the questions were admissible. Inadmissible questions do not have to be answered truthfully.

Allowable questions

  • Questions about your personal circumstances, such as: Where do you live, how old are you, how many children do you have?
  • Do you practice more occupations?
  • All questions about professional skills, knowledge, experience, professional career and certificate and examination grades
  • Do you still have days of military service?
  • Is there a non-competition clause from the current / previous activity?

Questions that are permissible under certain conditions

  • Questions about previous illnesses are only permitted if the employer sees a legitimate interest in the work, the company and the other employees
  • Questions about existing illnesses if there is a close connection with the work to be done, e.g. whether a medical operation is imminent
  • Do you have a criminal record? (Only if this is important for the intended activity)
  • All questions about personal wealth (except when it comes to working with money)

Inadmissible questions

  • Do you belong to a religion / party / trade union?
  • Are you getting married soon?
  • Are you pregnant? What is your family planning like?
  • Are you under investigation?
  • How much did you last earn?

Further information on inadmissible questions

Tags: checklist questions interview

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