Jobs interviews can be very demanding and stressful, and you’re likely to feel apprehensive when you’re preparing for them. However, this worry often fades away as soon as the interview starts. Most job interviewees don’t have trouble answering the standard, generic questions, and their responses often flow smoothly. But what if the interviewer suddenly presented you with an unanticipated, difficult, and even personal question that catches you off guard? Being in a situation where you have to be quick to respond might cause you to feel awkward and at a loss for words. Although it might seem like the interviewers are out there to get you, such questions, if conveyed properly, can in fact open up employment doors and will give you an edge over other candidates. The following are some examples on such questions and some suggested approaches on how to go about answering them.

  1. Abstract Character Questions

Some interviewers ask unusual questions that require some imagination on your part. For instance, you might be asked what animal or fruit you would picture yourself as. When faced with such a question, don’t get perplexed by its strangeness, and remember that it does have a meaningful purpose! When responding, do not fly off on a tangent, and avoid far-fetched answers that are difficult to justify as the way you justify yourself is likely more significant than the response itself. The point behind such a question is to examine how you subconsciously see your character, and it’s essential that you understand that! Think about how your most prominent attributes might be reflected in a fruit or animal, identify the ones your character is most compatible with, and be sure to explain your thought process.

  1. Why do you have an employment gap?

If this question applies to you, it’s important to prepare yourself for it. Think about the benefits you reaped while unemployed, and the ways in which your previous job prepared you for your next job. Discuss the skills you gained during this time that make you an even more qualified candidate for the new job. Consider this another opportunity to show employers what you can bring to the table to bolster your chances of employment.

  1. How long can we expect you to stay with us?

This question allows employers to somewhat gauge the impact that you can have on their company, as they expect to see a considerable level of prospective commitment. Although it’s difficult to give a certain response, try to be as realistic and optimistic as possible, while clarifying that this is just a rough guess. That being said, however, it’s important to be honest, evaluate your own circumstances, and avoid answers that you can’t commit to.

  1. What makes you a more eligible candidate than others?

At first, the phrasing of this question can be intimidating, as it suggests that you are negatively influencing the chances of other candidates. Therefore, the best way to tackle it is to try to highlight your personal qualifications that make you perfect for the job without using trying to undermine other job seekers. In other words, you need to disregard the implied comparison aspect of it.

In short, although these interview questions can seem to very different than the typical ones asked in most interviews they are, at their core, simple and easy to address if you manage to keep your cool. The key is to remain present and mindful of your thought flow, and to trust that you can effectively deal with any questions you are asked.

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