Responding to Situational Interviewing Questions

When an interviewer asks a situational question, they are asking you to describe how you would handle a hypothetical situation.

  •  What would you do if ….
  •   How would you handle ….

Unlike behavioral interviewing, they want you to tell them what you’d do in that hypothetical situation not a past situation.

Why do Interviewers use Situational Questions?  The interviewer uses situational questions to test your problem solving and analytical skills.  They also want to test how you respond to problems with minimal notice and preparation.

What’s the Best Way to Respond? The best way to respond is to tell them exactly how you’d handle that hypothetical situation.  Then, if you’ve experienced a similar situation, ask them if they’d like you to tell them what you actually did in a similar situation.  Use a CARB interview story to give them solid proof.  Your CARB interview story gives you the opportunity to emphasize the results you’ve achieved and reinforce the benefits to them of your experience and/or your skills in handling the situation.  And, remember to refer to actual statements made by your boss or co-workers as further proof of your results.



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