In today's highly competitive job market, mastering behavioural interviews is crucial. To secure a job, job seekers often have to go through rigorous job interviews and assessments to prove themselves as the best candidate for the position.
While your qualifications and experience certainly play a role in getting a job offer, it is equally critical to effectively demonstrate your skills and experiences to the hiring manager during the job interview. Hiring managers aren't just interested in your educational and professional background, they also want to see how well you can communicate, solve problems and fit into their company culture.
Behavioural interviews are becoming increasingly popular as they help employers learn more about how you handle particular scenarios.
In this blog post, we'll explore what behavioural interviews are, why they matter for job seekers and techniques for showing off your relevant skill set when faced with interview questions!
what are behavioural interviews?
As job seekers, we have all been in an interview where we feel like we are just reciting our CV to the interviewer.
Behavioural interviews are not just your run-of-the-mill Q&A sessions. Behavioural interviews are unique interview questions that employers ask to better assess the candidate's suitability not just for the job role, but also for the team and organisation.
Behavioural interview questions have become an essential part of the interview process as it gives managers a chance to see how job candidates would likely perform in the role.
Employers use these questions to gain a deeper understanding of a candidate's personality and behaviour, evaluate candidate’s ability and leadership skills, and identify their strengths.
On the other hand, this is also an opportunity for candidates to stand out in the candidate pool by showcasing their unique personality, applicable skills, core characters and strengths.
10 common behavioural interview questions
The behavioural interview questions assess candidates' character traits, such as their ability to handle the decision making process, work under pressure, solve problems and adapt to change. The questions are asked in a way to provide insight into how candidates have handled specific or similar situations in the past.
Here are some samples of common behavioural interview questions you can prepare for:
- Tell me a time that you had to make an important or difficult decision for a complex project and how you came to that decision?
- Describe a time when you had to disagree with your colleague or manager's opinions and how you resolved that?
- Tell me about a situation where you had to manage a particularly difficult team member, client or customer.
- Give me an example of a time when you had to manage your time effectively to juggle multiple projects.
- Describe a time when you had to work under pressure to meet a deadline.
- Give me an example of a time when you had to handle a stressful or difficult situations.
- Describe a time when you had to go above and beyond to meet or exceed expectations.
- Describe a time when you had to learn a new skill or process quickly.
- Give me an example of a time when you had to be creative to solve a problem.
- Tell me about a time when you made a mistake and how you learned from it.
When answering these questions, be sure to provide answers with examples of your skills and experience using the STAR interview technique method. Be honest and authentic in your answers.
So next time you step into an interview, remember to showcase your skills and knowledge practically and engagingly. By effectively showcasing your expertise through clear examples and engaging narratives, you can increase your chances of leaving a lasting impression on your prospective employer and securing the job opportunity you want.
how to prepare for behavioural interview questions: 3 key steps
Behavioural interviews can be intimidating, especially when you feel cornered to respond. The best way to prepare for a behavioural interview is to understand the job description you're applying for and anticipate the kinds of job interview questions you may be asked. Make sure you also have relevant stories and examples to showcase your skills.
Here are three ways you can prepare for behavioural questions during a job interview:
1. reflect on your experiences
The first step is to reflect on your past professional experiences and identify instances or challenging scenarios where you have to demonstrate the type of skills and traits the interviewer is likely to be interested in. This might include examples of problem-solving, leadership, teamwork and innovation relevant to the job and company.
2. use the STAR method to answer each question
Prepare your responses to behavioural-based questions using the STAR method, which stands for Situation, Task, Action and Result. This will help you to structure your answers in a way that is clear, concise and easy for the interviewer to understand.
the 5 star techniques in interview:
- Situation: Describe the situation that you were in.
- Task: Explain the task that you needed to complete.
- Action: Detail the actions that you took.
- Result: Describe the result you achieved.
here is an example of how to use the STAR method to answer a behavioural interview question:
Interviewer: Tell me about a time when you had to deal with a difficult customer.
Candidate: As a customer service representative, I once had a customer who raised their voices and demanded a full refund for a product. I stayed calm and listened to the customer's concerns without interjecting. I then apologised for the inconvenience that we have caused and offered to send either a replacement product or a service officer to help them set it up. The customer was satisfied with my response and thanked me for my help after the product was set up.
In the end, you should also share what you've learned from the situation and how you would approach it differently if you ever encounter a similar scenario to achieve better outcomes. This method provides you with a clear and concise framework that helps you structure your answers effectively.
3. practise your responses
The best way to prepare for behavioural interviews is to practise answering common behavioural interview questions.
Practise telling stories about yourself or past experiences that relate back to the job you are applying for. Practise makes perfect, but the goal here is not to memorise your responses. It is to become fluent and confident in discussing your skills and experiences.
Think through specific scenarios and how you would respond in those situations. Consider asking your mentor or a friend who works in the same industry for their time to rehearse your responses and get them to weigh in on how you can improve. The more you practise, the more comfortable and confident you will be during the job interview. This newfound confidence will enable you to communicate your value effectively.
Using effective body language and communication is also essential to signal your confidence to employers and appear confident and articulate. Sitting up straight, maintaining eye contact, and using hand gestures to emphasise key points are among the best body language practices for acing job interviews, whether they're in-person or conducted online.
how to with tricky behavioural questions
No matter how much you prepare for a job interview, answering questions that remind you of your past failures or negative experiences can be tricky. Be honest when responding to these challenging questions to demonstrate how you grew from the experience. Your willingness to acknowledge these experiences and discuss how you've grown can showcase your resilience.
Focus your responses on what you would have done differently if faced with a similar scenario in the future. Highlight your adaptability and your capacity to learn from past mistakes, emphasises how these lessons have equipped you to tackle similar scenarios with greater confidence in the future.
These difficult questions may catch you off guard, but with a little preparation and thoughtful answers, you can set yourself apart as a candidate who can handle anything.
Consider how you would address these situations differently if they were to happen again. Preparing your responses boosts your confidence and ensures you can navigate these thoughtful questions with confidence.
While these questions can be daunting, they serve as an opportunity to demonstrate your adaptability and strength as a candidate. With a well-prepared and thoughtful approach, you can navigate them successfully, positioning yourself as an ideal candidate for the role.
master your job interviews with randstad
Mastering behavioural interviews is critical to securing your dream job as a modern job seeker. With thorough preparation, using the STAR method, providing specific examples, and effectively communicating your experiences through body language and tone, you can ace your next interview.
In today's competitive job market, landing your dream job can seem like an uphill task. Randstad offers specialised services to help job seekers like you prepare for new interview formats and increase your chances of securing your dream job. With access to experienced recruiters and the latest interview tips, job seekers can plan their career strategies and confidently face any type of interview format in the future.
Whether it's a virtual interview, phone interview, or group interview, we've got you covered. Take the next step toward your career aspiration and position yourself as a standout candidate in the modern workplace. View all the job opportunities in our job portal and apply for a job to give yourself a competitive edge and increase your chances of success in the job market.