Home > Tips from the Pros > How To Answer Behavioural Job Interview Questions

How To Answer Behavioural Job Interview Questions

Interview questions are typically divided into three main categories: Traditional interview questions, Behavioural Questions (competency-based interview) and Situational questions (hypothetical questions).

Behaviour Job Interview Questions:

“Past behaviour is a better predictor of future behaviour”

It is estimated that 80% of the interview is made up of behavioural questions. In order to understand how to answer behaviour questions we need to first define what a behavioural question is.

This type of interviewing is based on the philosophy that your past actions and behaviours will be a good indicator of your future behaviours. Therefore, how you acted to certain circumstances in your previous job is a reliable indicator of how you will act in your new job. As there are literally thousands of behaviour type questions, you can best prepare for this type of questioning by researching the culture of the company to get an understanding of the behavioural traits that are essential to working at that particular organisation.

Behavioural questions differ to standard interview questions as they focus more on experiences, behaviours, knowledge, skills and abilities. Rather than the standard question of “Do you have leadership skills” a behavioural question is more likely to be “Give me an example of your previous role when you displayed leadership abilities.” As the interviewer has already determined which skills are necessary for the role it is important that you are prepared for these questions.

The best way to begin studying for these questions is to look at the job description! The list of skills that they require are the skills they will more than likely focus on. When the job description mentions they require a person with good teamwork skills or negotiation skills, it is more than likely that this will be turned into a behavioural question to see if you really do possess these skills.

In good news, behavioural questions are not to be feared. When prepared properly, these questions can be easily answered.

How To Answer Behaviour Job Interview Questions:

The best way to answer a behavioural question is to use the STAR format.

Situation: The interviewer wants you to present a recent challenge and situation in which you found yourself.

Task: What did you have to achieve? The interviewer will be looking to see what you were trying to achieve from the situation.

Action: What did you do? The interviewer will be looking for information on what you did, why you did it and what were the alternatives.

Results: What were the outcomes of your actions? What did you achieve through your actions and did you meet your objectives. What did you learn from this experience and have you used this learning since?

The Star Model:

© RedStarResume Publications – www.redstarresume.com

During the last decade, RedStarResume has successfully written hundreds of professional resumes for candidates across the globe. From the student or entry level position to the CEO, our unique, custom-made resumes are written specifically to match the goals and desires of our clients and to help them land jobs.

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