Interview Tips from Your Resume Girl , Michelle De Alba
If I had a dollar for every time I heard a job seeker say, I am great at interviewing, I just need to get in front of them. Listen, it’s not that you’re not great, it’s that the market has changed. The expectations are elevated and the competition is fierce!
Having interviewed and coached hundreds of applicants, trust me when I say this, it has been a rare occasion when I have seen an interviewee who is great (above average) in the interview. We all have room for improvement which takes preparation and practice. If you have made it to a face-to-face interview, you are in the top 3 to 5 candidates, you don’t want to lose an opportunity at this point.
There are multiple first impressions and various other interview tips, but if I had to pick the single most important factor to prepare for an interview, I would recommend that you know and understand what behavioral interview questions are and how to respond to them.
So, what’s a behavioral interview? It’s a method used by interviewers where they ask questions based on job-related situations. It can provide verifiable and concrete evidence of a candidate’s experience, knowledge, skills, and abilities to help the interviewer make a good hiring decision. The questions are designed to assess a candidate’s past behavior and performance to predict future outcomes, e.g., if you handled a situation in the past a certain way, it is highly likely you will handle it that way in the future.
What’s the good news? If you use this technique to formulate your answers to interview questions, you truly will stand out versus your competition in the interview.
You’re probably wondering, how do you master answering these types of situational interview questions? DDI, Inc. (Development Dimensions International, Inc.) is a leadership and consulting firm, who are experts and provide training on interview techniques and best practices on how to select the right candidate. They use an acronym to help you structure your answers in a manner to give clear and concise answers to questions, i.e., STAR: S (Situation), T (task), A (action), and R (result). This method requires using examples from your experience that demonstrate past behavior and performance. This format helps you deliver a direct and thorough message with the right amount of details without being too vague and highlights your specific actions and results. Let’s define the acronyms!
Situation and Task: give a specific example by describing the situation and the task you were assigned, e.g., when I was at XYZ Company, in my role as TITLE, I worked on a project…
Action: describe what specific actions you took to complete the task situation. Use a bullet point format to summarize 3 things that made this situation successful, this is not “we” or is NOT what the team did) this is the ‘how’ and what ‘approach’ did YOU take to get to the result, the SUCCESS.
Result: end with the bang, what were the results of your actions from your specific actions. Remember not ‘we’, YOUR. Be specific with YOUR results and what the outcome was exactly, i.e., grew business by X%, increased productivity by X%, increased customer satisfaction by X%, etc…