As with the commonly asked interview questions, planning and rehearsing your answers to different behavioral questions beforehand can help you remain composed during the interview.
Here’s how you can prepare for your interview's behavioral questions.
Study the Job Qualifications
Technical skills and expertise required for a position are generally clear to applicants. It’s the soft skills specifically needed to fit into the company, team, or role that can be quite vague.
That said, employers usually hint at the soft skills they need in their job advertisements.
Think About Relevant Experiences From Your Past Job
Now that you've identified all of the soft skills required for the position you're applying for, consider all of the experiences from your previous jobs that demonstrate your mastery of these skills.
Remember that you want situations in which the desired skill was tested and you succeeded.
Construct Answers Following the STAR Technique
Once you’ve prepared your set of situations, start arranging answers to highlight the desired skill using the STAR technique.
Here’s our breakdown of the STAR technique components:
Situation: First you should lay down the scene where you’ve got the experience. Give specific details to highlight the challenges of the problem at hand.
Task: Here you explain where you fit in the story. What exactly were the roles and responsibilities assigned to you. Were there any objectives or deadlines that you had to work to achieve?
Action: This is the section where you finally shine. Elaborate on exactly what you did to navigate your way and solve the challenge.
Take your interviewer through your thought process, whether you asked for assistance or adopted a new skill.
Even if you’re answering a question about a time that you failed you can still end on a positive note by highlighting any new skills that you learned.
Use numbers to emphasize the impact your actions had on the overall operation of your company.
Rehearse Out Loud
Simply memorizing your answers would come off as forced in front of your interviewer.
Instead of memorizing answers, try saying them out loud a few times. You don’t need to say the same words, you just have to stick to your STAR story outline.
It's also a good idea to practice answering questions in front of a mirror. You'll be more aware of your facial expressions and body language, which account for nearly 55% of our interactions.