Interviews can be stressful. We get it; we’ve all been there. Trying to figure out what an interviewer will ask, prepping answers to showcase your knowledge and expertise, and worrying that one wrong answer can lead to rejection – it’s all a bit overwhelming.
But not all interviews are so staunch. In fact, behavioral interviews throw technical questions out the window in favor of focusing on more personable questions that are a lot less stressful. The idea is you likely already have the answer. You just need to find the right stories to tell.
At Fidé, candidates often ask us the difference between a regular and behavioral interview and how to prepare for one. If you’re not familiar with this type of interview, this blog dives into what this interview is, several tips that will help you prepare, and a list of common questions you may encounter in a behavioral interview. We encourage you to read further to learn how to ace your next interview!
What Is a Behavioral Interview?
A behavioral interview focuses on asking candidates questions regarding their past experiences in the job market and making specific behavioral judgments about their answers. The logic behind this type of interview is to determine, based on situations you can recall from previous roles, how you would react in similar situations.
This interview mainly focuses on how a candidate uses soft skills to navigate certain scenarios, which gives interviewers a better sense of how they work.
3 Steps to Help You Prepare for a Behavioral Interview
When preparing for this type of interview, there are a few steps you can take to get yourself and your answers ready to impress.
1) Review the Job Description
No matter what type of interview you’re going into, always review the job description beforehand. Having a better understanding of what the company is looking for will help you feel more prepared (and less nervous!) about your upcoming interview.
Take note of any requirements or soft skills they emphasize throughout the job description, such as “critical thinker” or “problem-solving.” The interviewer will likely ask you behavioral-based questions relating to those aptitudes. Try to come up with stories beforehand that highlight a time you utilized that skill to improve a situation.
2) Use the STAR Method
Behavioral interviews are all about the stories you tell. But, without the proper technique, a story can become unwieldy and often lose focus. The STAR method is a straightforward framework designed explicitly for answering behavioral questions. Prepare your answer in the following manner for the most concise and impactful stories:
- Describe a specific situation
- Highlight the task that needed to be completed
- Explain the action you took to address it
- Share the results that your efforts achieved
3) Practice, Practice, Practice
It’s no surprise that the more you practice answering behavioral questions, the better you’ll become. So, take time to answer some of the mock questions below using the STAR method. Try to think of specific examples from your past work experience that is relevant to each situation. This will help you be more prepared when it’s time for your interview.
Common Questions Asked in Behavioral Interviews
Here is a helpful list of behavioral questions that you can practice with.
- Describe a long-term project that you were responsible for. How did you keep everything moving smoothly?
- Tell me about a time your workload became overwhelming. How did you address the situation?
- Describe a time you faced a conflict with a coworker. How did you handle that?
- Give me an example of a time when you had to rely on written communication to get your ideas across.
- Describe a time when your team was undergoing some change. How did you adapt?
- Give me an example of a time that you failed. How did you deal with the situation?
- Tell me about a time when you had to have a difficult conversation with an upset client or colleague. How did you handle the situation?
Fidé Can Help You Land Your Next Job
At Fidé, we want you to be successful! Taking the time to prepare for your interview will help you in the long run. Fidé is a staffing firm that connects candidates with leading employers for healthcare, finance, and information technology roles. Our staff is here to answer any questions you have, so feel free to reach out anytime. As always, we look forward to hearing from you.