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Old 08-09-2012, 10:15 AM
 
1,266 posts, read 1,381,211 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 313Weather View Post
Try coming up with prepared answers for the tough interview questions you encounter, and try typing a nice cover letter (Microsoft Word 2010 if you have it has the Fleisch-Kincaid Readability Scale included which measures the grade level of your documents). They could be eliminating you because you don't have a cover letter (you may have good writing/english skills and they don't know it) or because you're unable to answer the tough interview questions.

But realize you're completing with hundreds, if not thousands of people for these positions. You must pull out all of your guns to win this dog fight. You will lose several battles in this war (rejection) before eventually landing a victory (a job), but you just must simply try again and try harder.
yeah, unfortuneately there is way too much damn competition even for the simplest, easiest entry-level service jobs out there, minimum-wage jobs such as being a ticket-taker at a movie theater, gathering shopping-carts for a supermarket store, grocery store or retail store, stocking merchandise, bagging groceries, flipping-burgers, etc.

Some questions that are tough for me are: "Give me a time when you are a leader of a group and how did you manage to lead the group?"

"Tell me about yourself?"

"Tell me about a time you worked with somebody to achieve a goal that at first seemed impossible?"

"Why do you want to work here?"

"What is your biggest weakness?"
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Old 08-09-2012, 11:01 AM
 
7,238 posts, read 10,891,939 times
Reputation: 5583
Quote:
Originally Posted by WantToHaveALife View Post
yeah, unfortuneately there is way too much damn competition even for the simplest, easiest entry-level service jobs out there, minimum-wage jobs such as being a ticket-taker at a movie theater, gathering shopping-carts for a supermarket store, grocery store or retail store, stocking merchandise, bagging groceries, flipping-burgers, etc.

Some questions that are tough for me are: "Give me a time when you are a leader of a group and how did you manage to lead the group?"

"Tell me about yourself?"

"Tell me about a time you worked with somebody to achieve a goal that at first seemed impossible?"

"Why do you want to work here?"

"What is your biggest weakness?"
Well first, let me say I HATE behavorial interviews. Someone pulled them from the depths of hell as far as I'm concerned.

First, the easy questions...

"Why do you want to work here?"

Tell them something you like about the company and that you will also like to use that job as an opportunity to develop additional skills and knowledge.

For example, "I would like to work at McDonalds because I'm attracted to your company's mission to provide clean, friendly and fast service at a reasonable price. It is similar to my philosophy that customer service is of the utmost importance and I would love to grow with a company that values quality over quantity.

"What is your biggest weakness?"

Describe something you're not so great in, but that you would like to improve in and in what way.

For example, "I tend to be a little slow when completing a task that I'm assigned to my. This is only because I like to make sure my work is done as professionally as possible. However, I would like to use this opportunity here at McDonalds to improve my work speed while still assuring it's done as perfectly as possible."

"Tell me about a time you worked with somebody to achieve a goal that at first seemed impossible?"

If you have no experience, describe a time that in school that you worked with other students on a project or in an extra-curricular activity that you thought you would succeed at. They ultimately want you to tell them a story. They want to know exactly what you achieved and how.

"Give me a time when you are a leader of a group and how did you manage to lead the group?"

I don't understand for the life of me why they would ask you this question if its already clear you have no experience, especially if you're applying for a leadership position. That's why I can't stand these scripted behavorial question.

But in any event, if at any time you were a team captain when you were younger or lead a group project for class, tell them a story about it. Like the previous question, they want to know what you achieved and how.

And lastly...

"Tell me about yourself?"

This is the question I LOATHE the most. It's such an open-ended question and you don't really know what way to answer it. It's a crap shoot because every manager is different and will expect you to answer it a different way. Some may want to know about your hobbies/interest so they can see you're a good cultural fit. Others may just want you to re-iterate the accomplishments on your resume.

Last edited by 313Weather; 08-09-2012 at 11:10 AM..
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Old 08-10-2012, 06:14 PM
 
1,266 posts, read 1,381,211 times
Reputation: 334
Quote:
Originally Posted by 313Weather View Post
Well first, let me say I HATE behavorial interviews. Someone pulled them from the depths of hell as far as I'm concerned.

First, the easy questions...

"Why do you want to work here?"

Tell them something you like about the company and that you will also like to use that job as an opportunity to develop additional skills and knowledge.

For example, "I would like to work at McDonalds because I'm attracted to your company's mission to provide clean, friendly and fast service at a reasonable price. It is similar to my philosophy that customer service is of the utmost importance and I would love to grow with a company that values quality over quantity.

"What is your biggest weakness?"

Describe something you're not so great in, but that you would like to improve in and in what way.

For example, "I tend to be a little slow when completing a task that I'm assigned to my. This is only because I like to make sure my work is done as professionally as possible. However, I would like to use this opportunity here at McDonalds to improve my work speed while still assuring it's done as perfectly as possible."

"Tell me about a time you worked with somebody to achieve a goal that at first seemed impossible?"

If you have no experience, describe a time that in school that you worked with other students on a project or in an extra-curricular activity that you thought you would succeed at. They ultimately want you to tell them a story. They want to know exactly what you achieved and how.

"Give me a time when you are a leader of a group and how did you manage to lead the group?"

I don't understand for the life of me why they would ask you this question if its already clear you have no experience, especially if you're applying for a leadership position. That's why I can't stand these scripted behavorial question.

But in any event, if at any time you were a team captain when you were younger or lead a group project for class, tell them a story about it. Like the previous question, they want to know what you achieved and how.

And lastly...

"Tell me about yourself?"

This is the question I LOATHE the most. It's such an open-ended question and you don't really know what way to answer it. It's a crap shoot because every manager is different and will expect you to answer it a different way. Some may want to know about your hobbies/interest so they can see you're a good cultural fit. Others may just want you to re-iterate the accomplishments on your resume.
Some more Interview questions that are tough for me:

"Describe an instance you had to perform a task both quickly and accurately?"

"Please provide an example where you accomplished a task as a team"

"Tell us a time you and other employees were asked to do a difficult task, how did you achieve it and what were the results (or something like that)?"

"If you are finishing up a detailed conversation with a customer and another customer interrupts with a question, what do you do?"

"How would you handle a situation in which you weren't experienced or qualified to answer a customer's complaint or question?"

"What would you do if you were helping a customer and another customer interupted and demanded your help?"

"What if a customer came in and ask for and item you don't have what would you do?"

"What are your steps to complete a task or a project?"

"What would you do if you were working on a task that needed to be completed with a time limit and some one else came along and ask/told you to do something else?"

"How would you handle an irate, angry, or frustrated customer?"

"You are working on an inventory that is due in 30 minutes. A frustrated customer comes up to you and demands help. How do you deal with the situation?"(that same answer for that can be the same one answered to the other question about the time-limit right?)

"what was the hardest thing about working in a group and how did you resolve it?"

"How would you handle a situation where you realized someone was stealing?"

"Why should we hire? or what can you do for us that other's can't?"

I don't have much customer-service experience, so how should I answer those questions?
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Old 08-10-2012, 07:02 PM
 
26,590 posts, read 54,577,614 times
Reputation: 13019
Some more Interview questions that are tough for me:

"Describe an instance you had to perform a task both quickly and accurately?"

I was given a very limited amount of time to move several shelves worth of stock and place the proper sale signage before the store opened one morning.

"Please provide an example where you accomplished a task as a team"

I worked with several coworkers to do a last minute floor move and by working together we were able to finish it faster than the time allotment we had been given.

"Tell us a time you and other employees were asked to do a difficult task, how did you achieve it and what were the results (or something like that)?"

We quickly discussed the project and determined who was strongest in each of the components and then broke the project tasks down based on each persons strengths. When one person finished, they would go help out another of the team members until we got it done.

"If you are finishing up a detailed conversation with a customer and another customer interrupts with a question, what do you do?"

Acknowledge the second customer and let them know you'll be with them as soon as you finish with the customer you are currently helping. Finish with the first customer as quickly as possible and then assist the second customer. (They didn't teach you this in basic training at Target?)

"How would you handle a situation in which you weren't experienced or qualified to answer a customer's complaint or question?"

Show genuine concern/empathy/interest and explain that unfortunately you aren't able to help them but if they'll give you a moment, you'll call a manager/coworker who will be able to assist.

"What would you do if you were helping a customer and another customer interupted and demanded your help?"

Acknowledge the second customer and let them know you'll be with them as soon as you finish with the customer you are currently helping. Finish with the first customer as quickly as possible and then assist the second customer. (They didn't teach you this in basic training at Target?)

"What if a customer came in and ask for and item you don't have what would you do?"

Show them a similar product and explain how it will meet their needs.

"What are your steps to complete a task or a project?"

Think about a project you've done and list the steps you took to complete it.

"What would you do if you were working on a task that needed to be completed with a time limit and some one else came along and ask/told you to do something else?"

Is the person who told you to do something else a manager? If so, explain that a different manager asked you to complete the task you are working on, and that if they wanted you'd be happy to check with them to see if you could help the second manager. If it was a coworker, tell them that the manager assigned you the task you are working on and when you finish you'd be happy to help them.


"How would you handle an irate, angry, or frustrated customer?"

Listen to them without interrupting, then empathize--tell them that you understand that they are upset and would like to try to help them. If you are able to offer a solution that is within your level of empowerment, do so. Otherwise let them know that you are going to call a manager who will be able to work with them to resolve their problem.

"You are working on an inventory that is due in 30 minutes. A frustrated customer comes up to you and demands help. How do you deal with the situation?"(that same answer for that can be the same one answered to the other question about the time-limit right?)

See previous answers.

"what was the hardest thing about working in a group and how did you resolve it?"

Working with people who work at different paces and we resolved it by having the people who finished first assist the ones who took a little longer.

"How would you handle a situation where you realized someone was stealing?"

Guest service them until they leave the store. Walk up to them and say, "Hello. I saw that you were interested in our widgets. We have several different colors of widget available, let me show you the other ones. Basically drive them nuts trying to be helpful until the leave, then immediately notify loss prevention or your manager, depending on store policy. Never accuse them of stealing or follow them out of the store.

"Why should we hire? or what can you do for us that other's can't?"

I am highly motivated to start a career with an organization that will allow me to grow with them. I will be reliable and put my work schedule ahead of outside activities.
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Old 08-10-2012, 08:58 PM
 
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Reputation: 517
I had one of those "scripted" interviews before. I didn't sit there and try to wow anyone nor did I try to sound all smart and serious.
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Old 08-11-2012, 05:17 AM
 
Location: Out West
22,707 posts, read 16,813,625 times
Reputation: 26287
To start, bunny, I can't rep you yet again but you so richly deserve it.

Now...

Quote:
Originally Posted by WantToHaveALife View Post
...Some questions that are tough for me are: "Give me a time when you are a leader of a group and how did you manage to lead the group?"

"Tell me about yourself?"

"Tell me about a time you worked with somebody to achieve a goal that at first seemed impossible?"

"Why do you want to work here?"

"What is your biggest weakness?"
Have you ever been in a group setting, ever? It doesn't always have to be work related...any group. Boy scouts, basketball, drama, yearbook committee...just throwing things out there.

Why do you want to work here? You never tell them, "Because I need a job" even though that may be the exact reason why. What you do to prepare for this question is research a little about the company, yes, even if it IS McDonalds. Tell them what you know about the company and how you agree with that and would love to be part of a team that, (fill in the blank). Is it b.s.? Sure. Just as their question is b.s. For more professional jobs, you better have a damn good reason you want to work there, not just because you need a job.

What is your biggest weakness...take something that is a weakness and turn it into something positive. "I have a hard time stopping once I get going." (Lame, I'm doing this on the fly, but it should give you an idea.)

Tell me about yourself: You know, this was the very first question I was asked in the interview for the job I just landed. I hesitated at first...where to start? What do I say? I then just dove on in, starting off with, "Well, as you can see from the resume, I..." and from there, it just flowed naturally in to who I am, as a person. She only asked me two other questions after that because that one question almost answered all of her other questions. It was one of the most comfortable and easiest interviews I've ever had. Of course I was nervous and you never know what they are looking for but sometimes, just start out with something work related and watch what happens next. It can flow right on in to things about you, personally.

They don't have to be canned answers, just tell them the "story".
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Old 08-11-2012, 05:46 AM
 
Location: Out West
22,707 posts, read 16,813,625 times
Reputation: 26287
Quote:
Originally Posted by WantToHaveALife View Post
Some more Interview questions that are tough for me:

"Describe an instance you had to perform a task both quickly and accurately?"

"Please provide an example where you accomplished a task as a team"

"Tell us a time you and other employees were asked to do a difficult task, how did you achieve it and what were the results (or something like that)?"
You'll have to find an experience in your life where these happened.


Quote:
"If you are finishing up a detailed conversation with a customer and another customer interrupts with a question, what do you do?"
It depends on the customer's question. If it is, 'Where is the ketchup', I would say, "excuse me" to my current customer and tell the other where the ketchup is located and then quickly get back to my first customer.

If it's a more complicated matter, I would again say, "excuse me please" to the first customer, turn to the second customer, greet them and inform them that I will be right with them. OR, if a co-worker is in the immediate area, I would ask them if they were able to help the second customer.

Quote:
"How would you handle a situation in which you weren't experienced or qualified to answer a customer's complaint or question?"
I would let them know and tell them that I would get the person who is qualified. I would then get someone who is qualified to come help them after telling the qualified person the situation.

Quote:
"What would you do if you were helping a customer and another customer interupted and demanded your help?"
If it wasn't life threatening or an emergency, I would say, "excuse me, please" to the first customer, turn to the second customer, greet them and tell them that I will be right with them.

Quote:
"What if a customer came in and ask for and item you don't have what would you do?"
I would apologize for their inconvenience and then tell them where they can find what they are looking for...or, if I did not know, find the information for them. (This depends on what they are looking for. Do we have anything similar? If they are looking for something we don't have or don't have any thing close to it, I go with my first response.)

Quote:
"What are your steps to complete a task or a project?"
Identify what is needed. Draw up a plan. Implement the plan. (Sorry, this is a stupid question.)

Quote:
"What would you do if you were working on a task that needed to be completed with a time limit and some one else came along and ask/told you to do something else?"
Depends on the situation. Depends on who is asking. Is it my manager asking? Is it a co-worker asking? How much time did I have? Would I know I could complete the time limit task AND help the other person? If it was my manager and the request is another complicated task, I would agree while reminding them that I am working on the first project. (God, another lame ass question.)

Quote:
"How would you handle an irate, angry, or frustrated customer?"
Calmly. Listen to the customer. Really listen to the customer. Often times, the customer just wants to be heard and know that someone has actually heard them. I would then apologize that they were not happy with their service, product, etc and offer what ever I am allowed to offer without going higher up, if the situation warranted that. If none of that worked, I would seek out a manager who has the qualifications to permit a better offer as our way of trying to make it better.

Quote:
"You are working on an inventory that is due in 30 minutes. A frustrated customer comes up to you and demands help. How do you deal with the situation?"(that same answer for that can be the same one answered to the other question about the time-limit right?)
I would help the customer and then when I got back to my first task, work twice as fast and hard.

Quote:
"what was the hardest thing about working in a group and how did you resolve it?"

"How would you handle a situation where you realized someone was stealing?"

"Why should we hire? or what can you do for us that other's can't?"
These I can't answer for you, these you have to answer for yourself..although the stealing one should be easy to figure out. Seriously. What they want to hear? You would report the person for stealing offering all the evidence you have. That's what they want to hear, not sure why that is a difficult question. Edit: Are we talking about a co-worker stealing or a customer stealing? If it's a co-worker, what I just said. If it's a customer, I would keep an eye on them while contacting our Store Security to handle the situation.

These may not be perfect answers, I'm not at an interview and am just offering suggestions to how you could answer these. The best way to think of these customer service questions is to put yourself in the customer's shoes. What would YOU want? Do you give a rat's patookis if the person only has 30 minutes to do their stocking? No, you need help. So think how it is as the customer.

Last edited by Three Wolves In Snow; 08-11-2012 at 06:01 AM..
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Old 08-11-2012, 08:32 PM
 
5,683 posts, read 9,128,818 times
Reputation: 43722
If you all can manage to stay on the topic of the original post and refrain from attacking each other, I will leave this conversation open. Continued bickering and name-calling will result in the thread being closed permanently.
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Old 08-11-2012, 08:59 PM
 
1,266 posts, read 1,381,211 times
Reputation: 334
So a lot of answers to these interview questions don't have to be job-related, work-related, they can be from experience's, situations that occured outside the work-place?

Here are some more interview questions that i've been asked before that are tough, hard for me:

"Tell me about a time when you helped out someone without being told?"

"How do you handle conflict"?(i believe they are referring to conflict among your co-workers right?)

"What is your greatest strength, or strengths?"

"Name a time when you had to multi-task?"

"Describe a situation you were put under pressure and how did you resolve it?"

"Recall a time when you had to complete a task or project that was a stretch of your skills, beyond your skillset?"

"Tell me about a time when you realized that you made a mistake and how did you fix it?"(for that question, the way I answered it before in an interview was that when I realized I made some grammar, punctualiational error in writing an essay, i used a school-related answer, but not sure if that was a good answer or not)

"What is one thing a teacher or supervisor has told you to improve on?"

"What would you do if you saw an employee stealing?"(i've been asked a similiar question before but the question was involving only a customer, guest stealing, not an employee)

"If you were confronted with a situation where you only had a small amount of time to finish all your work, how would you handle that situation?"

"Tell me about a time when you had a disagreement with a co-worker, what was the outcome?"( never had any disagreement with a co-worker in the short-term jobs i had)

"Name a time where yo had to put someone's needs before your own?"

"What does customer-service mean to you?"

"Where do you see yourself in 5 years?"
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Old 08-12-2012, 05:23 AM
 
26,590 posts, read 54,577,614 times
Reputation: 13019
Quote:
Originally Posted by WantToHaveALife View Post
So a lot of answers to these interview questions don't have to be job-related, work-related, they can be from experience's, situations that occured outside the work-place?

Here are some more interview questions that i've been asked before that are tough, hard for me:

"Tell me about a time when you helped out someone without being told?"

"How do you handle conflict"?(i believe they are referring to conflict among your co-workers right?)

"What is your greatest strength, or strengths?"

"Name a time when you had to multi-task?"

"Describe a situation you were put under pressure and how did you resolve it?"

"Recall a time when you had to complete a task or project that was a stretch of your skills, beyond your skillset?"

"Tell me about a time when you realized that you made a mistake and how did you fix it?"(for that question, the way I answered it before in an interview was that when I realized I made some grammar, punctualiational error in writing an essay, i used a school-related answer, but not sure if that was a good answer or not)

"What is one thing a teacher or supervisor has told you to improve on?"

"What would you do if you saw an employee stealing?"(i've been asked a similiar question before but the question was involving only a customer, guest stealing, not an employee)

"If you were confronted with a situation where you only had a small amount of time to finish all your work, how would you handle that situation?"

"Tell me about a time when you had a disagreement with a co-worker, what was the outcome?"( never had any disagreement with a co-worker in the short-term jobs i had)

"Name a time where yo had to put someone's needs before your own?"

"What does customer-service mean to you?"

"Where do you see yourself in 5 years?"
Why don't you try answering them and we'll give you constructive feedback instead of asking us to solve your problem for you. And no, the answer doesn't have to be work related--it can be something you did in school, with friends, or on your own. The interviewer understands that you don't have a ton of work related experience to draw from.
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