If You Were A College Student Again, What Would You Do Differently To Prepare You For This Job?

When a hiring manager asks this question during your interview for employment, he or she may wonder in which ways you have had to adapt to make your training work with the reality of the workforce and the requirements of your position. Your ability to discern better methods for achieving success in your job demonstrates understanding of both your professional goals and the nature of problems within the field.

Your interviewer hopes you will be willing to innovate in order to improve the work situation and your performance. Regardless of your field, chances are good that it adjusts and evolves rather routinely, and the employee who anticipates and self educates poises to increase success exponentially.

Points to Emphasize

Your careful response to this question represents the opportunity to highlight specific skills and characteristics that make you indispensable to employers.

  • Share work-related experiences that made you better at your job.

  • Talk about skills you wish had been honed through your education and training to prepare you to adapt for the field.

  • Portray your skills and characteristics in a manner that best shows their usefulness for effective work.

  • Explain how your experiences and personal qualities make you the best candidate for the job.

Keeping your response positive will help your interviewer to see that you are committed to doing the best work possible.

Mistakes You Should Avoid

Interview questions and their responses help hiring managers to discern a cohesive view of your value as an employee. To avoid pitfalls that may harm that perspective:

  • Do not give the impression that you see yourself as being beyond approach.

  • Do not attempt to separate yourself from past employers and mentors by casting their abilities in a poor light compared to yours.

  • Do not appear ashamed of your skills or education.

  • Do not forget that experience is the best educator.

Hiring managers will be impressed by critical thinking skills and ability to understand the demands of the field. Respond honestly and accurately to reveal ways in which you would like to improve your ability to learn from your new position.

Sample Answer

The ideal answer to a question about how you might have better prepared at the college level for this position may sound like this:

Each of us learns from our experiences as well as the classes we take to train for our specific field. There are things I wish I had been better prepared to expect and handle, but hands-on experience has helped me to adapt and hone my approach. The key to improving any training is to interweave real world opportunities as often as possible.

While this question may seem abstract, it actually serves to create a very real sense of who you are as an employee. Your interviewer will be pleased to find you cognizant of your own need and ability to improve.

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