How to Interview for a Job in American English, part 3/5


Youre hired! Two words everyone loves to hear. But before we hear those words comes

(dun dun duuuuhn!) the interview. Today’s video is part three in a series that’s all

about preparing for a job interview.

This is part three of a five-part series on preparing for an interview. Interviewing for

a new job can be a huge source of stress and anxiety. If youre interviewing for a job

in a non-native language, the stress can be even higher. In this video you will see me

interview for a job. Throughout the interview, well discuss some of the most common interview

questions and how to answer them. Youll also learn some basic information to get you

started creating your own answers to these questions. Let’s pick up where we left off

in the previous video.

TK: Can you tell me about a time where you suffered a setback and had to maintain your


Common Question: Can you tell me about a time when you suffered a setback and had to maintain

your enthusiasm? The interviewer may ask questions like this to get a better sense of how you

behave and perform in certain stressful situations. The question may be about your actual past

experiences, or a hypothetical situation, to see how you would respond. Here are examples

of other questions that are similar to this one:

Tell me about a time when you had to deal with a difficult client or coworker.

Tell me about a time when you had to respond to a crisis.

Tell me about a time when you had to give difficult feedback.

How would you handle a situation where you and your supervisor disagreed about an issue

or course of action?

You can see, there’s a lot of variety in the kind of way question is asked, so it’s

impossible to know exactly what you might need to say. In the days leading up to your

interview, practice responding to several different versions of this question every

day. This will help build important vocabulary you might need in the interview, and will

also help you feel ready to answer questions like these.

TK: Can you tell me about a time where you suffered a setback and had to maintain your

enthusiasm? RS: Sure. One definitely comes to mind. Last

year a project for a new toy was in its final stages after two years of work. As we were

looking at the branding and working up a final marketing plan, a competitor launched a version

of the exact same toy that we were launching. As the leader of the project, I knew that

my reaction would set the tone for the group. I acknowledged that it was a setback, but

challenged the group to think of this as a blessing in disguise. I asked them to go out

and buy the competitor’s product and make a list of anything they wished the toy could

do that it didn’t. It turned out that the list was pretty long. We added these items

to our toy, and launched a far superior product 6 months later. So, in many ways, the competitor’s

product became the key to our success. TK: That sounds like a great victory. Now.

What would you consider your greatest weakness?

Common Question: What do you consider to be your greatest weakness? This question can

be a tough one. You want to be as honest as possible when answering this question. This

is an opportunity to show a future employer that you know yourself, and are willing to

work to improve yourself. Share a weakness, like public speaking, or attention to detail,

fear of failure. And then talk about ways youve worked on improvement in that area.

Here is a way to start a response:

My greatest weakness is ___.

It shows up in my work when __.

The ways I’ve worked to improve in this area are __.

Take a moment to think about something youve struggled with in your work life. Think of

ways that youve worked to improve, any books that youve read, classes youve

taken, and so on. These are the things you want to share with the interviewer when answering

this question. Remember, the important thing is to show that you are aware of your weak

spotsand that you are already working at improving in these areas.

TK: Now, what do you consider to be your biggest weakness?

RS: Chocolate. Just kidding! No, my biggest weakness is public speaking. It’s something

that I’ve spent a lot of time working on and in which I’ve improved a great deal.

I’m very comfortable in smaller meetings with my teams. But when I present an idea

or concept to a larger audience, I still experience some stage fright. At this point, I can handle

these situations professionally, but I would like to be more comfort in these moments so

I can really enjoy the experience of presenting, rather than just survive it.

TK: Fear of public speaking is a very common fear; I’m in the same boat on that one!

To be continued! Well pick it up from here in the next video in this series where well

discuss talking about the future and wrapping up the interview.

I hope this video on job interviews has been helpful. There’s nothing better than walking

out of an interview feeling that you were well prepared!

If you have interview-related questions or stories, please post them in the comments

below. I’d love to hear them.

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That’s it, and thanks so much for using Rachel’s English.