It’s inevitable: If you go to many job interviews, you are eventually going to be asked some awkward, uncomfortable interview questions, or even some illegal interview questions. We have compiled a short list of some of the most difficult questions and some advice on how to get you past these little bumps during a job interview.
Sample Interview Questions
* Why did you quit your last job? This question is not on the list of illegal interview questions – it is perfectly acceptable to ask this question. It can be one of the most difficult to answer, though. You don’t want to cast yourself in a bad light, but you also don’t want to make the company you previously worked for look bad – no employer wants to hire someone that is still angry at their last company or “trash talks” their old boss. The best answer is sometimes the simplest – answer the question without going into too much depth. Something along the lines of “I enjoyed working for XYZ, but the company and I were headed in different directions and mutually decided it best if we parted ways” can answer the question without making anyone look bad.
* What pay rate are you looking to get? This is one of the most difficult interview questions. You don’t want to state a number that is way too high – the employer will immediately decide they can’t afford you and not even give you a chance at the job. Likewise, if you state a number that is too low, you may sell yourself short. Especially if the employer already had an amount in mind and you gave a much lower number. Many job seekers like to answer this question vaguely. Something along the lines of “I’m open to discussion – I’d like to hear the job duties and responsibilities and then maybe we can come up with an amount together?” is an appropriate answer.
* So, how many kids do you have and how do you think you’ll be able to handle the job and your kids at the same time? This is one of the illegal interview questions you might be asked. Respectfully decline to answer any questions along these lines. You are not required to disclose this information.
As always, it’s best to seek the advice of a professional such as an interview coach, recruiting agency or resume writer that assists job seekers with resumes and interview questions. They can look over your resume and help anticipate any awkward questions you might be asked. They can tell you how to answer these questions, and even do some role playing to help you be able to answer questions without faltering or searching for answers. Additional information that address interview questions can be found on our site under the Interview Prep section.