It's almost certain you will be asked to speak about your qualifications for a role during a job interview. Talking about yourself is one of the hardest things for candidates to do, but it is totally essential. It might make you nervous and throw you off from what you really wanted to say at first, so we're here to help you prepare the best answer for why you are qualified for the position.
You'll be asked many different interview questions, but why should we hire you for this position is almost always one of them. Focus on your qualifications. The interviewer will want to know about your experience and skills. You may want to bring some notes along with your resume. Never read directly from your notes but have them to reference if you get stuck or nervous.
The best answers to include when asked: What are your qualifications?
You will want to tailor any answers to match your background and the position you are applying for. It's a good idea to give an example of previous work or experience with these statements. It will provide context for the interviewer which makes your answer stronger and easier to remember.
- At my previous company, I was responsible for managing a team of five people.
- I work well under pressure and can handle a fast-paced environment.
- I have excellent time management skills and can meet given deadlines.
- I spent three years of being responsible for a multi-million-dollar budget.
- I believe my experience at my last company has set me up for this next opportunity.
- My skills have prepared me to handle stressful situations.
- In my past two jobs, I never missed a sales goal.
Answering interview questions outside of the corporate world
If you are applying for a job outside of an office, you may want to change your approach when you answer. Take some time to think about what makes you the best candidate for the position. Pay attention to the job description on the company's website. Make sure you practice so you know how you want to answer the interviewer's questions.
If you are switching industries or starting a new career focus on past experiences and skills you have learned. Just because you haven't done everything this role is looking for doesn't mean you aren't qualified. Tell your potential employers what you like about working in their field. You can share your knowledge of the job even if you haven't actually performed the task before. Give specific examples of previous work that makes you a strong candidate. The skills you acquired in the past might be more relevant to this job than you think.
Examples of interview questions and answers in different industries
Why do you want to work in retail?
- I have worked in retail in the past and have had great success.
- I am qualified based on my experience in college.
- My skills match up with the qualities you are looking for.
What makes you qualified to work in a restaurant?
- One of my first jobs was in a restaurant.
- I really enjoy being with customers.
- I work well when I'm not sitting behind a desk all day.
Final thoughts on discussing how you are best qualified for a position
No matter what industry or company you are interviewing with, you will have to show that you are the most qualified candidate for the job. Every interviewer will have interview questions about your experience and skills. Keep your answer personal and be sure to highlight areas you excel in. Avoid responses that are too fluffy or generic. Offer something the employer hasn't heard before that makes you stand out from the other candidates.
Remember, you have great skills and a company would be lucky to have you. It may take a few interviews to find where you really fit in well though. Stay positive and don't rush your decision. You will know when the position is right for you, so be patient.