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Top 15 Questions Asked at Job Interviews-3 & 2

# 3 – What Unique experience or qualifications separate you from other candidates?

Recruiters and hiring managers conduct interviews with candidates possessing similar skill sets. Therefore, they are looking for distinct qualities or experiences to filter out applicants and narrow down the selection. It is imperative for candidates to use their interview to differentiate themselves.

Gary Wong of Strategic Recruitment Services, Sydney, Australia explains, "This question is a chance for the candidate to market himself/herself, as a particular candidate would not be aware of the qualities of other competing candidates. The candidate's response should be focused on his/her strengths. As a recruiter or hiring manager, we can then judge the intensity of their response, whether they are over-blowing their trumpets, too timid, unsure about their qualities or are more reserved and realistic about the way they see themselves. All of which is actually a reflection of their character."

# 2 – Why are you looking for a job? Why are leaving your current position?

Employers want to quickly gauge the motivation and seriousness of the candidate. Michael Marchese, a specialist in recruitment for the accounting and finance industries in Phoenix, Arizona, explains, "Reason for leaving is an extremely important question, it gives the person interviewing critical insight about a person and their behavior. As a recruiter, it's concerning when salary increase is the only reason, these people will take counter offers. An issue with a supervisor seems to reoccur with certain individuals and this is a red flag of someone possibly being difficult to work with. Another serious issue is a candidate not staying with companies for more than a year, someone classified as a job hopper and companies aren’t interested in these candidates."

Common Acceptable Reasons for Leaving:

Common Reasons that Send Up "Red Flags":

Recruiter Tip: If being fired was the reason for looking, try to avoid saying literally, "I was fired." Never lie, but simply state you "had a difference in opinion" with your former employer. Luckily, many HR departments have policies regarding divulging in-depth information about a former employer except to confirm and deny salary history and dates of employment. If you were fired due to criminal activity, be extra careful and possibly seek the advice of an attorney.

Questions 15 & 14
Questions 13 & 12
Questions 11 &10
Questions 9 & 8
Questions 7 & 6
Questions 5 & 4

-J. Michael Worthington, Jr.
For more information, visit In addition to providing innovative resume consulting and analysis service for Job Seekers, also provides expert advice to job seekers, employers, and members of the media. is a subsidiary of Personal Department Inc. (PDI), Vermont’s largest independently owned staffing agency.