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Read below for common questions you may be asked during an interview, questions to ask the employer, and illegal interview questions.

Common Interview Questions
  • Tell me about yourself.
  • Why are you interested in working for this company?
  • Tell me about your education.
  • Why have you chosen this particular field?
  • Describe your best/worst boss.
  • In a job, what interests you most/least?
  • What is your major weakness?
  • Give an example of how you solved a problem in the past.
  • What are your strengths?
  • How do others describe you?
  • What do you consider the most important idea you contributed or your most noteworthy accomplishment in your last job?
  • Where do you see yourself in three years?
  • Think about something you consider a failure in your life, and tell me why you think it happened.
  • How do you think you will fit into this operation?
  • If you were hired, what ideas/talents could you contribute to the position or our company?
  • Give an example where you showed leadership and initiative.
  • Give an example of when you were able to contribute to a team project.
  • What have you done to develop or change in the last few years?
  • Do you have any questions for me?

Questions to Ask the Employer

  • What are the responsibilities and accountabilities of this position?
  • How well is the position defined? Can its duties be expanded?
  • Please describe an average day on this job.
  • What is the history of the position? Why is it vacant?
  • What aspects of this job would you like to see performed better?
  • What are the key challenges or problems of this position?
  • Where can I go from here, assuming that I meet/exceed the job responsibilities?
  • How would you describe the ideal candidate?
  • What are the employer's short- and long-range objectives?
  • What are some outside influences that affect company growth?
  • Where does the company excel? What are its limitations?
  • When and how will I be evaluated? What are the performance standards?
  • With whom would I be working? Who would be my supervisor? Who would I supervise?
  • What is the department's environment like?
  • When will you make the hiring decision? May I call you for the decision? When is a good time?

Illegal Questions

  • What is or was your spouse's name or line of work?
  • Have you ever filed a Workers' Compensation claim or been injured on the job?
  • Do you have any physical impairments that would prevent you from performing the job for which you're applying?
  • Have you ever been arrested?
  • What is your hair/eye color? What is your height/weight?
  • Have you ever been hospitalized? If so, for what condition?
  • Have you ever been treated by a psychiatrist or psychologist? If so, for what condition?
  • Is there any health-related reason you may not be able to perform the job for which you're applying?
  • How many days were you absent from work because of illness last year?
  • Are you taking any prescribed drugs?
  • Have you ever been treated for drug addiction or alcoholism?

For more information about illegal interview questions, contact your state's Department of Human Rights or your local state employment service office.

Source: Creative Job Search, a publication of the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development.

Department of Labor CareerOneStop is sponsored by the U. S. Department of Labor,
Employment and Training Administration