Advising & Career Services

Sample Interview Questions

Employers usually develop their questions around traits and skills deemed necessary for success in the position or business.  Some applicants find these kinds of questions intimidating, but if you practice your responses with concrete examples to illustrate your answers, you'll do well. Remember to draw from your experiences in the classroom, at work, in volunteer organizations.


Follow the STAR guidelines:  Describe Situation/Task, explain the Action you took, identify the Result of this experience and how you might perform differently in future.


Tell me about a time when you......
  • Were forced to make an important decision.
  • Had to deal with an irate employee/customer/classmate.
  • Persuaded team members to do things your way.
  • Were tolerant of an opinion that was different from yours.
  • Were unfairly criticized. 
  • Got caught in office politics. 
  • Had to handle failures or weaknesses in others. 
  • Worked effectively under pressure.
  • Let the details of a project slow you down.
  • Hired the wrong person.
  • Fired a friend or co-worker.
  • Were disappointed in your performance.
  • Had to adapt to a difficult situation.
  • Were creative in solving a problem.
  • Delegated your authority properly.
  • Made a bad decision.
  • Set your goals too high or too low.
  • Had to make a decision based on limited facts.
  • Overcame a major obstacle.

Excerpted from "What College Didn't Teach You, What Human Resource Departments Won't Tell You...About Finding a Job", T2 Management Group, Spokane, WA.