A new trend in interviewing is to use behavior descriptive interview techniques. Rather than asking you to project what you would do in a hypothetical situation, the potential employers ask you to describe past behavior. They may ask you a time when:
- You showed initiative at work
- You handled a difficult situation
- There was a conflict with your coworkers
- You disagreed with a supervisor
What they will ask will depend on what the job requires. For example, if they are looking for an applicant who is a great multi-tasker, they may ask you to describe a time when you felt overwhelmed and how you handled it.
Here are some tips for preparing for a behavior descriptive interview:
- Assess the job requirements and anticipate the kind of situations they may ask you about.
- Prepare stories ahead of time, keeping the job requirements in mind. They should be work related, but can also include volunteer work or school projects.
- Be prepared to describe a time when things went wrong and you put a positive spin on it.
- You might have to think on your feet! If a question catches you off guard, take your time coming up with an appropriate answer.
- Always be honest; interviewers are likely to ask follow-up questions to verify your answers.