How to Turn Negative Interview Questions Into a Positive

One of the keys to a successful job interview is to keep things positive. You have a limited amount of time to impress your Hiring Manager and want to keep the conversation focused on why you’re the right person for the job. One way to stay away from negativity is to frame your answers in a positive way, turning a potential weakness into a strength. To do this, you can anticipate certain questions and be prepared for them. If you think you’ll be asked, you probably will. Here are three likely questions you can prepare for:

Q: “Tell me what you didn’t like about your last position?”

Answering this question can be tricky on two fronts. First, it can bring up challenges that you found with the job, which could expose potential weaknesses. Secondly, this can be an opportunity to speak negatively of your old company and/or manager, which you should never do during an interview. To answer this question in a positive way focus on how potential issues helped you grow, and give a few examples in the process.

Example answer: “There wasn’t anything I didn’t like, only challenges and obstacles. I enjoy working with others to solve challenges and overcome obstacles. Let me tell you about a couple we tackled together…”

Q: Could you tell me about this gap in employment?

Hiring Managers want to see growth over your job history, so having a gap in employment presents an opportunity to talk about what you achieved outside of the office. This is your time to highlight volunteering, education, growth, etc.

Example answer: “While displaced from working in my preferred field I spent time volunteering, furthering my education and pursuing personal improvement. I grew from that time and it made me a better person and a more valuable employee.”

Q: Tell me about a time you disagreed with a peer, how did you resolve that conflict?

Coworkers disagree from time to time. Choose an example that illustrates your patience, listening skills, and ability to find constructive resolution.

Example answer: “I’m not sure the person I disagreed with even realized we disagreed. I spent most of the time asking my peer why they felt so strongly. I let them speak the majority of time, did not interrupt, remained patient and calm, and validated their opinions. After they finished I calmly and simply stated my opinion and we came quickly to a reasonable compromise.”

This technique can be used for nearly every interview question, and is particularly helpful for questions containing negative connotations. Using this technique will increase your chances of getting the job. Talking negatively about your previous employer, gaps in your employment, or conflict resolution will decrease your chances of getting the job.

Keep Out the Burnout: Four Tips for Keeping Your Work/Life Balance in Check While Working from Home

Do you feel like worktime is blurring into personal time? While you may like the idea of skipping the commute and working in sweats, for those new to working from home, it can be a culture shock not to have a clear distinction between work and home. If left unchecked, not having a defined work life separation can lead to burnout. Luckily, there are ways to make sure your work life doesn’t become your entire life:

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Expert Tips for Networking Online

Networking has always been a vital aspect of your job search, and recent events have made it even more important. Studies have shown that up to 85% of all jobs are found by networking. With companies needing to fill a variety of open positions in the near future, it’s more important than ever to reach out to those around you to get a jump on these opportunities. Here are four tips for using online networking to find your next job:

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Three of the Biggest Time-Wasters When Looking For a Job (And What to Do Instead)

Looking for a new job can feel like a full time job in itself. Like any job, you can only commit so much time to the grind before you start feeling burnt out. Job searches are full of time-wasting activities that can bring you down, so here are three of the biggest to avoid — and what you should do instead:

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Three Tips For Making A Switch To A New Field

As you progress through your career, your interests and goals will likely change. Maybe the long hours and traveling you relished early in your career are now taking their toll. Perhaps you feel as if the skills you’ve developed would be better utilized elsewhere. With new opportunities appearing every day, you may be interested in trying something new and transitioning to a new field. But how do you go about finding something in a field that may be foreign to you? Here are four tips that will help things go smoothly:

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Four Things You Should Never Do During A Job Interview

As you prepare for your job interview, it’s important to remember that you are being observed from the moment you walk in the door to the moment you leave the building. This isn’t meant to scare you, just remind you that your words and actions matter. Hiring Managers are looking for the right skills and the right culture fit, so small things might mean the difference between getting the job and going back to the drawing board. So what are the types of things that may turn off your Hiring Manager during an otherwise strong interview? Here are four red flags to avoid:

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