Every interview is different, but there are a few things to keep in mind. You should take a copy of your resume and be prepared to answer questions about your education, skills or job history. While the interviewer may ask different questions depending on the position, company and role you’re applying for, some questions are more popular than others. It’s a good idea to know common interview questions—and practice your answers so you feel prepared and confident during your interview.
What are your strengths?
When you interview for a position, the interviewer may ask what makes you a strong choice. Pick one or two of your personal strengths relevant to the position. For example, you may interview for a construction position that requires the ideal candidate to have hands-on skills in construction but also be open to learning related skills in electrical, plumbing or carpentry.
If you are a curious person with a problem-solving mindset, you can talk about how this is a strength you can bring to this role. To further illustrate your strengths, tell a story about how you used your curiosity and problem-solving skills in a previous role, at school or in another setting where you excelled.
Why do you want this job?
Businesses want to interview and hire people who are passionate about the position. If you applied for a role, it’s likely you’re interested in it! Be direct with the person interviewing you—let them know why the job excites you. Identify two to three reasons you believe you are a good fit, such as, “I love working on cars,” and “I’m a strong team player who enjoys collaborating with others in the automotive garage.”
Explain to the interviewer why you want a job at their company.
Tell me about a conflict you’ve faced. How did you deal with it?
We all face challenges from time to time. While you may not want to discuss something negative in your interview, consider how your answer can showcase you in a positive way. Be honest about a conflict you encountered and stay professional when you tell your story.
Spend more time talking about the resolution than the conflict. Try to provide answers to the following questions: How did you resolve the conflict? What was your approach? What did you learn? How will you bring those skills to this job? Focus on explaining the solution so the person who interviews you can understand how you respond to challenges.
What type of work environment do you like?
Work environments vary from company to company and can depend on the nature of the position. Most entry-level positions in the trade industry occur in hands-on environments, such as construction sites, residential homes, automotive garages, or a combination of locations.
Work environments can be quiet, noisy, collaborative, self-paced, structured or laid back. Consider how you do your best work. Do you need quiet to focus? Do you prefer collaboration and conversation with others? If you interview for an entry-level trade position, be sure you know what works for you to be successful.
Do you have any questions for us?
At the end of the interview, you may be asked if you have any questions. It’s always a good idea to come prepared with two or three questions. This demonstrates your commitment and interest in the job position. You can ask questions about the position and the company. Or, ask the interviewer what he or she likes about working there—the answer may give you valuable insight into the company’s culture. With the right amount of preparation and practice, you can set yourself up for success.
*Apex Technical School and its instructors are licensed by the State of New York, New York State Education Department.
Disclaimer: Apex Technical School provides training for entry-level jobs. Not everything you may read about the industry is covered in our training programs.