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.

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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Three Hiring Myths To Ignore During Your Job Search

Worried that you aren’t the perfect candidate for the job, or that you aren’t applying to enough opportunities? Maybe you’re watching the phone and wondering why you haven’t heard back from your Hiring Manager? There are a lot of job search myths out there that may be causing you some extra stress. It’s time to debunk the three most common:

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Want The Job? Three Important Tips for a Winning Resume

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Do you have your eyes on a new job opening that’s right up your alley?  Are you looking to put together a resume that will grab the Hiring Managers attention and get your foot in the door? A winning resume is about more than just the skills and experience you have, it’s also about how you present them.  Here are three tips that will help you land that interview:

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Three Things That Will Ruin Your Interview… Before It Even Starts

It would be a shame to put so much time into prepping for an interview, only to derail it because you made a mistake before you even had a chance to shake the Hiring Manager’s hand. Most of your attention is going to be on the face-to-face portion of your interview, but it’s worth remembering that your interview will start the moment you arrive on location. Here are three things that can ruin your interview even before you actually meet the Hiring Manager.

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Let’s Do Lunch (Interviews)

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Would you like fries or a salad with your entree? How about a refill on your iced tea? These are not the type of questions you would typically be asked during a job interview, but in the case of a lunch interview, you can expect to hear them alongside “Tell me a little bit about yourself” and “What is your biggest weakness?” While you shouldn’t expect a lunch interview in your job search, they are common enough that you should know how to navigate them. Let’s tackle a few of the most commonly asked questions people have about these types of interviews:

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What Are Your Biggest Strengths? How to Answer the Most Common Interview Question

“What are your biggest strengths?” – Every Hiring Manager in Every Job Interview

According to Glassdoor, this is the most common interview question Hiring Managers ask during an interview. In other words: you will be asked this question, in some form or another.

So… how should you answer it?

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How to Absolutely, Positively Make Sure You Arrive For Your Interview On Time

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Got a job interview in a few days? You probably have a lot on your mind, and unfortunately, not all of it is good (where are those lucky socks?). While you may be focused on the things you think you can’t control, let’s put your mind at ease about one thing: you can absolutely, positively make it to your interview on time. No, it’s not magic; you just have to follow three easy steps:

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