Top 25 Behavioral Interview Questions (With Sample Answers)
You must have played “What if” questions in your school or college but have you ever thought that this round of game can get you a job in your dream company? When you go for a job interview, the recruiter will ask you behavioral interview questions that will assess your personality as well as your take on the given situation.
Interviewers often throw questions that are situation based to gauge your behavior and your ability to handle professional situations.
This round can also be called the ‘make or break’ round as your competency will be tested and if you fail to show your ability to stay calm-headed and wise, you can even lose the job opportunity despite having good points in the previous interview round.
Let’s check out more about the behavioral interview questions and review the most common behavioral interview questions employers ask. Plus, get tips on how to prepare and respond smoothly when you’re asked to give examples of how you handle workplace situations.
What Are Behavioral Interview Questions?
A behavioral interview is an interviewing method and a significant chunk of the interview process during which the interviewer evaluates a candidate’s general behavior in specific situations to understand how they interpret things or respond to a situation.
A behavioral analysis of the candidate also assists the employer in forecasting their future success and how they will interact in the workplace if such a situation arises. These broad questions do not have a single, fixed answer, but rather revolve around how you perceive a situation. Employers assess your adaptability, teamwork, problem-solving, leadership, and other soft skills by asking such questions.
Now let’s see some tips that will help you crack behavioral interview questions in a very apt manner:
1. Learn A-Z About the Company and the Role You’re Applying For
The more familiar you are with the job and the organization, the easier it will be to respond to interview questions. Take the time to research the company and read the job posting before your interview so you’re as familiar with the role as possible.
2. Match Your Skills to the Job Requirements
Review the job requirements and make a list of the behavioral skills that closely match them to help you prepare for a behavioral interview.
3. Create a List of Behavioral Mock Questions Examples
Interviewers construct interview questions to decide how flourishing a candidate will be given the job’s specific tasks. Obviously, you want to deliver your experiences as clearly as possible, using real-life examples and emphasizing situations where you succeeded.
Top Behavioral Interview Questions and Sample Answers
Let’s check the most common behavioral interview questions and answers.
1. How do you handle a challenge? Tell me about a situation where you faced a challenge.
When asked such a question, the interviewer wants to see how you react to challenging situations. They wish to see your approach toward work challenges.
During my internship at ABC organization, I was given the task of implementing SEO in old blogs to bring traffic and as I was a newbie, I was a bit scared. However, I jumped right into the task and did a basic course in SEO to understand the nitty-gritty of it and discussed the same with my Team Lead before implementing it. Giving up is never an option for me!
2. Can you work effectively under pressure? If yes, how?
Interviewers usually seek candidates who can work under pressure at any time. These kinds of behavioral questions can asses your condition in a high-pressure job.
My team lead had to leave town suddenly one time, and we were in the midst of complex negotiations with a new sponsor. I was tasked with putting together a PowerPoint presentation based solely on the comments he had left and some briefing from his supervisor. My presentation went well. We got the sponsorship, and the senior management even suggested giving me a promotion from the internship role.
3. When was the last time you made a mistake and how did you handle it?
Everyone makes mistakes and they’re part and parcel of life. By admitting mistakes, you’ll be seen as a wise person who is not afraid of making mistakes and learning from them. the interviewer is interested in how you handle them when they occur to you.
I once miscalculated the cost of a specific type of membership at the club where I worked. I went to my supervisor who appreciated that I clarified my mistake and me being honest with him knowing that it might cost me my job. He commanded me to offer to waive the new member’s filing fee. Despite my error, the member joined the club, my manager was understanding, and while I felt bad that I had committed a mistake, I did learn to pay careful attention to details in the long term so that I can provide correct info.
4. How do you set goals? Give an example.
The interviewer wants to know if you set goals through this behavioral interview question. Goal setting is one way to achieve success and if you’re not a goal setter, it shows that you’ve no right roadmap to work out. They want to see how you plan your objectives and set milestones to achieve what you want.
When it comes to setting goals, I prefer to follow the SMART goal-setting method. Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, and Time-bound. Last time I wanted to learn basic Japanese in 2 months, so I bought an elementary class Japanese learning book and created a roadmap that helped me follow the routine. Within 3 weeks, I mastered the alphabet and later on, started with the phrases. I enrolled myself in a Japanese class soon after which helped me to achieve my goal within the timeframe I set for myself.
5. Take me to the time you set a goal and achieved it.
When it comes to this behavioral question, the path is more crucial than the destination. The interviewer is interested in your method, including how you came up with the objective and the steps you took to accomplish it.
I wanted to quickly and efficiently capture the interest of prospective customers, so I set a goal of obtaining a digital marketing certification. I looked into online and in-person programs and tried contacting previous clients who are experts in the field. I ended up finding a program that worked for me thanks to their suggestion, and I’ve used that knowledge to create campaigns for my firm.
6. Tell me a decision that other team members or colleagues didn’t like. How did you implement it?
Management must often make difficult decisions, and not all employees are pleased when a new policy is introduced. If you’re interviewing for a decision-making position, the interviewer will want to know how you handle change.
Because I’ve been a Quality control leader for many years, I’m used to making hard choices now and then. I recently lowered my team size and extra hours. We must sometimes make decisions that are in the best interests of the company. Cutbacks happen, and as much as I strive to prevent them, they can sometimes make my choices unpalatable.
7. Are you someone who works in a team or like solo working? Give an example of how you worked on a team.
Many jobs necessitate teamwork. The prospective employer will want to know well how you collaborate with others and cooperate with other teammates during interviews for those positions.
In my previous consulting job, I was part of a small team of analysts. Each of us was given a specific set of data to analyze each day, and at the end of each day, we compared our findings and attempted to draw some conclusions for the sales team. I enjoyed the team meetings, and it definitely helped with my motivation to know that my coworkers relied on the outcomes of my work and that if I didn’t do my share, we wouldn’t be able to achieve the sales department’s output as a team. Furthermore, we were appreciative of one another and assisted one another with heavy workloads. Overall, it was a fantastic experience.
8. What do you do when your opinions collide with someone else?
The interviewer is looking for insight into how you manage workplace issues with this question. Consider how you resolved a dispute or came to an agreement when there was a workplace dispute.
I had a manager a few years ago who wanted me to find ways to delegate the majority of the tasks we were doing in my department. I thought that having the staff on-site had a significant impact on our efficiency and ability to connect to our clients. I made a compelling case for her, and she devised a workable solution.
9. Give an example of how you were able to motivate employees or co-workers.
Do you have a strong ability to motivate others? What methods do you employ to motivate your team? The hiring manager wants to see evidence of your ability to motivate others.
I was once in a scenario where our agency’s management was taken over by staff with expertise in a completely different industry, in an attempt to maximize profits over service. Many of my colleagues have been resilient to the drastic changes that were being implemented, but I recognized some of the perks right away and was able to convince my peers to give the new method a chance to be successful.
10. Have you handled a difficult situation? How?
When you come across a difficult situation, do you give up or sustain till you find a solution? This is what the interviewer wants to know. It’s critical to give an honest answer while also explaining how you managed to overcome the challenge. Knowing how to react when a prospective employer asks about challenging situations you’ve faced can help you make a positive first impression.
During my stint at Malcom Lawyers, I met a lady who was having property disputes with her son. It was very disheartening to her in that condition and she couldn’t afford to hire expensive lawyers for that. Though I wasn’t allowed to take such cases, I decided to waive her fee out of my pocket and fought her case against her son, and quickly won the case as well. She received a good amount of compensation for that as well.
More Behavioral Interview Questions You Should Prepare for
- Describe a project or situation that best illustrates your analytical skills. What did you do?
- Describe a time when you had to analyze data and make a recommendation. What kind of thought process did you engage in? Was the suggestion accepted? If not, why not?
- Describe a time when you had to solve a difficult problem. What exactly did you do? What was the end result? What would you have done differently?
- How do you research a problem before making a decision? Why?
- When was the last time you had to deal with an angry customer? What exactly did you do? How did things turn out?
- If you have inherited a customer, tell me about that experience. What steps did you take to establish rapport with them? What did you do to gain their trust?
- How have you managed a previous situation in which your client changed the brief or “moved the goalposts”?
- Describe a time when you went above and beyond to ensure a customer received the best possible service from you and the organization. What was their response?
- When was the last time you went out on a limb to defend a customer? What occurred?
- Tell me about a recent successful speech or presentation you gave.
- When was the last time you had to give a presentation to a group of people with little or no preparation? What challenges did you face? How did you deal with them?
- Have you ever had to “sell” a concept to colleagues? How did you manage it?
- Tell me about a time when you were able to effectively communicate with another person, even if that person did not like you (or vice versa).
- Have you ever encountered any hurdles or difficulties in communicating your ideas to a manager?
- Tell me about a time when you had to use your written communication skills to convey an important message.
How to Answer Behavioral Interview Questions With the STAR Method?
The STAR method is the simplest way to answer behavioral interview questions. Each interview response should have the following structure, according to the STAR interview method:
S stands for Situation. Describe the situation in which the situation happened.
T stands for Task. Describe the task you were given to solve the issue at hand.
A stands for Action. Describe the action you took to achieve the aforementioned task.
R stands for Results. Discuss the result of your actions in as much detail as possible. How did your actions help the company or organization run more smoothly?
Besides this STAR method, you can get your behavioral questions answered in our FAQ section.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Q1. How do you pass behavioral interview questions?
Ans. To pass behavioral interview questions, you need to follow these tips:
- Study the job description carefully and ensure that you understand what role you’re applying for.
- Examine major projects you’ve worked on and write down your outcomes.
- Review previous job performance assessments and if needed, ask for recommendations from your previous supervisor and colleagues.
- Create a list of your professional achievements.
- Use the STAR method to structure your behavioral interview question answers.
- Be honest and open in your answer. Don’t lie.
Q2. What should you not say in a behavioral interview?
Ans. These are 4 things you should never say in a behavioral interview:
- No matter how bad a job was, you never, ever want to badmouth a former employer in an interview.
- Don’t speak negatively about anyone you’ve worked with in the past, especially about your boss.
- Never say that “it’s on my resume”. If someone asks you something that’s in the resume, they’re looking for an answer that is not there in the resume.
- Chuck the clique replies that you see in the interview. Be honest yet unique with your answers.
Q3. Why are behavioral interview questions important?
Ans. Behavioral interview questions are important because they assist the hiring manager in determining how a candidate will respond in difficult or stressful situations. As a result, the interviewer attempts to learn about the candidate’s personality and experiences by asking questions about particular real-life scenarios.
Q4. How to ace behavioral interview questions?
Ans. You can ace behavioral interview questions by using the STAR method to construct your answers.
- S stands for Situation. Describe the situation in which the situation happened.
- T stands for Task. Describe the task you were given to solve the issue at hand.
- A stands for Action. Describe the action you took to achieve the aforementioned task.
- R stands for Results. Discuss the result of your actions in as much detail as possible. How did your actions help the company or organization run more smoothly?
Q5. What type of question is asked during a behavioral interview?
Ans. We have mentioned all the different variants of behavioral interview questions that recruiters can ask you. A few examples are:
- Can you tell me about a time you faced difficulty during project execution and you still successfully executed it?
- How do you handle animosity between your teammates? How do you resolve internal conflicts?
Getting nervous during a behavioral job interview is not so uncommon as you will be grilled by the interviewer to cook up a situational solution that will impress them. However, if you’re prepared beforehand with sets of answers, it’ll be easy for you to ace the interview without much hassle!
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