Confidence: A Core Interview Problem

The thing that most candidates lack so often isn’t qualification or skill, but the confidence to handle the questions thrown at them. For this very reason, they find themselves lost and confused during the interaction. Knowing common questions beforehand can be very helpful for presenting a more confident self in front of the interviewer.

Common Fresher Interview Questions

For fresher candidates who are facing interviews for the first time, we bring here the Top 5 fresher interview questions and their best answers:

1. Tell me about yourself.

Understand what the interviewer wants to know when he asked you tell him about yourself.
Understand what the interviewer wants to know when he asked you tell him about yourself.

A common icebreaker, this is the candidate’s chance to set the tone of the interview and to present themselves in the best possible light.

Why this question:

The interviewer won’t jump to level difficult. They are experienced enough to handle all type of interviewees so the first question is normally to make the person comfortable. This doesn’t mean that the answer isn’t considered.

What are they ‘really’ asking:

It’s easy amble through on this one. After all, you have known yourself for many years. However, if you go into this without any preparation, then all those years won’t count for much.

2. Why should we hire you?

"WHy should we hire you?" Job interview question.
“Why should we hire you?” Job interview question.

Usually positioned mid-session or near the end, this one from the set of fresher interview questions is a chance to portray yourself as the most ‘fit’ candidate for the position.

Why this question:

Direct and to the point, it’s not a chance to talk about why it’s a good opportunity for you. Afterall, you were shortlisted and did beat so many applicants to sit on the hot seat and that means something.

It’s a self-analysis to check your suitability for the position being offered.

What are they ‘really’ asking:

By asking this question, the interviewer usually wants to ask “What makes you best-fit for this position?”

How to answer:

Focus on your qualifications and skills and how they can help the company.

  • Start with your professional persona  and move on to how you stand out vis a vis others with the same qualification.
  • Match those to the job description for the position
  • Add traits that will help the company’s business position and show you in line with the company’s business ideologies and processes.
  • Improvise according to the company’s requirements.

    3. What are your strengths?

    Most candidates take it for granted that they will know the answer to this question. However, this (over)confidence costs them in the end as they find it hard to frame their answer. Yes, it is an easy question, but that is the whole point of it.
    Why this question:

    This question is to test how you will respond to something like this and that is why you need to put in some thoughts and preparations to get it right. Despite being one of the most widely asked questions in job interviews, interviewees tend to mess it pretty often.

    How to Answer:

    Do not use too many adjectives or go on with a list of strengths you have. Instead, sit, think, relax, choose one or two skills and explain why you consider having those strengths. Include strengths that the company is looking for. Some prior research will provide you with enough clues for that. And, even if you have an impressive list of strengths to your name, try not to come across as too arrogant.

    Stay positive throughout your answer. You can begin by saying – “I have strong ethics while at work. When I have to meet some deadlines at work, I try to complete it within the stipulated time or ahead of that. While I was in my college…”

    4. What are your weaknesses?

    The question that follows is something you can amalgamate with your previous answer.

    Why this question:

    According to an interesting write-up on ‘The Business Insider‘, – What Hiring Managers Really Want To Know – the question is a test of character. If I were to liken it to an onion, it is a question with multiple layers, which can be peeled through for each of them.

    The first layer is obvious – there are looking for cues or red flags on why they should not hire you. Next, they are looking at your ability to be prepared and maintain composure in a difficult setting. They also want to know how self-aware you are and whether you’re doing anything to overcome them.

    What are they ‘really’ asking:

    Summarising the points given above, here are the real questions nestled within a broader ‘What are your weaknesses’.

    • Why should we not hire you?
    • How do you react in a pressure situation?
    • How self-aware are you?
    • Would your weaknesses impact your job performance?
    • What are you doing to improve on your weaknesses?
    How to Answer:

    Do not say that you don’t have any because that’s arrogant, overconfident, and practically not true! Instead, talk about your weaknesses and talk about how you are working towards eliminating them.

    Do not count waking up late, drinking, smoking, etc. as your weaknesses.

    5. What are your long-term goals? What are your short-term goals?

    Know how to answer the fresher interview question about your career goals. (Image; Flexjobs)

    This is to check your commitment towards the job. A casual query like this can turn into a probe into your maturity and the levels of dedication you maintain towards your overall work graph.

    Why this question:

    From a recruiter’s perspective, the job interview is the best time to get focused information from a candidate, which will help them make a decision about them. Asking about their goals, both short-term and long-term goals, helps these recruiters understand where they are coming from and what plans they have for their lives.

    What are they ‘really’ asking:

    This also lets them decide whether the candidate would be a good hire and would stay in the company. What motivates them and where would they go, if they face an opportunity in line with those goals – both internally and externally.

    How to Answer:

    Haven’t thought about your future, five years down the line, let alone in the coming six months? Start thinking. This is how you can answer this fresher interview question.

    • Think of what you want to do in 6 months, 1 year, 5 years
    • Include the Company in your plans
    • Begin explaining short-term goals.
    • Include long-term goals, but don’t talk about salary or explicit details

    So, don’t say you want to earn a lot of money and then run away to Prague. Yes, there are interviewees casual enough to answer that. On the other hand, don’t say your long-term goal would be getting “your chair” (the interviewers). That will pretty much take away the job from you.