Highlighting your accomplishments is an important part of every job interview. The accomplishments you state during your interview will often take center stage and help increase your chances of landing the job. There are many interviewing accomplishment samples that can help you learn how to craft a response to questions about your accomplishments—we’ll take a look at a few in this article.
When you’re discussing your accomplishments in an interview, it is a good idea to elaborate. Don’t simply share what you’ve done or what you can do—share examples of your work through stories. Stories are helpful to share because they tend to be very memorable and easy to understand. Answers regarding accomplishments should provide more detail and depth than your resume or cover letter. When the interviewer gets a better grasp on what you’ve accomplished in the past, they’re then able to get a better grasp on what you could accomplish in the future. Also, discussing your accomplishments in a detailed, competent, story-focused manner puts your communication skills front and center.
Types of Interview Questions
While interview accomplishment samples are important to have at the ready, it’s also a good idea to understand the various questions that may be asked during an interview. Most people can easily share more information about their accomplishments with these traditional interview questions. Although they can be tough, they are predictable, so you can prepare and practice in advance. Here they are:
1. Tell me about yourself.
2. Why should we hire you?
3. What are your strengths and weaknesses?
4. Are you a team player?
In addition to these getting-to-know-you type of questions, you will probably be asked behavioral interview questions. These questions cover your past experiences and they often ask for examples of how you solved problems or used your skills.
For example, the hiring manager might ask, “Tell me about a time in your previous job where you acted as a leader and helped the company succeed.” Be on the lookout for these questions. They typically begin with something like, “Tell me about a time when . . . .”
Behavioral interview questions are best answered using the STAR Method. STAR stands for Situation–Task–Action–Result. It’s a straightforward way to structure your answer, and to ensure you provide every detail the hiring manager is looking for.
Many times situational interview questions are asked. These questions are similar to behavioral questions; however, they pertain to a hypothetical situation. For example, you may be asked, “What would you do if you were stuck working with a difficult subordinate?” It is also common to receive questions about your resume. These questions usually focus on a particular part of your resume and are an opportunity for you to provide more detail about your accomplishments.
Sample Questions and Answers
There are many interviewing accomplishment samples that can help you understand how to better answer the questions that come your way during an interview. Below are a few great Q&A examples to check out.
Why should we hire you?
“Naturally, most job seekers will say that they are the best candidate for the job. I know that I can do the job well, but I also think that I have more to offer than other candidates. When I worked as the marketing director for Acme Baker Company, I was able to increase sales by fifty percent and promote an atmosphere where creativity thrived. During my time as director, the company released several successful products that increased our ability to cross-promote and increase total revenue. We also expanded our distribution footprint to meet the needs of consumers—as director, I played a very big role in making that happen. I know that I can help this company succeed in the same way I did in my previous role.”
Can you explain a time when you effectively solved a problem at a previous job?
“When I was hired as the chief marketing officer, the company was at a five-year standstill and growth had halted. Due to changes in the market, products that were previously our biggest sellers were now struggling. I worked with the marketing department to rebrand these products and increase their sales. We changed our target audience and were able to increase brand awareness and grow sales among these products. Soon, we started to see growth again, but this time, with a new customer demographic.”
Tell me about your job at XYC Company?
“I worked as the sales manager and interacted with the salespeople on a daily basis. My job entailed a variety of responsibilities, from hiring the sales force to setting sales targets. However, my proudest accomplishment was implementing a training system that increased sales by ten percent. We were able to test to find the best sales methods, and then were able to scale it up for the entire organization. The company has used this training method for the last few years, and substantial sales growth has been recorded since its inception.
Tell me about a time when you had to work with a difficult person.
“At my previous company I held a director-level marketing role. Whenever the smallest problem would arise, one of my colleagues would run straight to the CMO with the problem. This approach would almost always make the problem much worse. This colleague was known for being a bit difficult, and other people in the office were afraid of confronting of him.
One day I decided to sit down and talk with him directly and honestly. I explained that although I appreciated his efforts, my preference was to present a solution to the CMO and not a problem. He appreciated my directness, and realized, once we talked a bit more, that the way he’d been going about things wasn’t the best way. We began to work together quite well, and ended up developing a strong bond, one that resulted in some excellent opportunities to problem-solve together. It was a win for me, my colleague, and the CMO.”
Tips for Presenting
In addition to studying sample interview answers, it is important to understand what separates standard accomplishments from those that will get you hired. First, make sure to choose a theme to concentrate on during your job interview. If you are trying to sell the fact that you are detail-oriented, your interviewing accomplishment samples should include experiences that demonstrate your strengths in this area. You can also practice using a single accomplishment as a response to a variety of questions. If you can adapt to the questions that are asked and still highlight your top accomplishments, your chances of landing the job will increase.
This doesn’t mean that you should use one sample throughout the job interview. Rather, if you have practiced using one sample in many scenarios, you will be more prepared if the interviewer throws you a curve ball question.
Remember that while family and personal accomplishments are important, they should not take center stage during an interview. The interviewer has invited you in to learn more about your professional skills, rather than your ability to parent or be a great community member.
Sharing information about your family status, religious ties, or political views could set you up to be judged on something other than your professional skills. Focus on interview accomplishment samples that highlight your strengths in the work field and that will motivate the hiring manager to give you a job.
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