Interview questions can be hard and stressful, especially behavioral questions. Most candidates find behavioral interview questions to be the most difficult to handle, but don't worry. We are here to provide some useful tips on using the STAR method. Below, we'll break down what STAR is and the best way to use it during your next job interview.
What is the STAR Method
The STAR Method is an interview method candidates can utilize when answering behavioral interview questions. STAR stands for situation, task, action, and result. Let's break down what each word represents so you can use the STAR method in the future. Take time to practice answering these questions so you will be totally ready for your job interview.
When answering questions using STAR, make sure you start with the situation. The example should be relevant to the job you are interviewing for. Discuss a specific project, event, or challenge you have handled. You will want to include what, where, who, when, and how.
Next, describe the task from the situation that you were responsible for. You will want to mention any difficulties or challenges that you faced and how you managed it.
Make sure you then tell the hiring manager exactly what you did. This part of your answer should include the most details. Take time to explain the work you did. Focus on skills and techniques that you put into action. For example, teamwork, leadership, dedication, and initiative.
This is where you get to brag about your success. Share the results you got and how your contributions made a difference for the company. Give examples of what you learned. Make sure if you faced a problem that you explain the step-by-step process as you tell your story.
When to use the STAR interview method
The STAR method is best used when answering behavioral interview questions. Here are a few examples of behavioral interview questions that you can use the star method to answer.
- Teamwork: Tell me about a time you had to work with a difficult colleague.
- Adaptability: Talk about a previous job where your team was affected by changes and how you were able to adapt.
- Client facing skills: What technique do you use to handle unhappy clients?
- Time management skills: How do you manage a tight deadline?
- Communication skills: Was there a time in your career you had to present to managers or high-level executives?
- Taking initiative: Tell me about one or two situations where your plan was implemented and helped you reach a goal.
- Working under pressure: Talk about a time in a past job where you were under extreme stress and how you managed the pressure.
Tips for using the STAR method
When answering a behavioral interview question, remember what STAR stands for. Situation, Task, Action, and Results. Prepare stories from a past job experience that highlights your skills. Each question the interviewer asks is an opportunity to show you are the right candidate for the job. The more questions you master using the STAR interview method, the better chance you have to land the job.
Before your next interview, practice answers using the STAR interview method. It may help you provide stronger and more complete answers. There are many common interview questions you can apply the STAR method to since virtually all the interviews you'll go to will ask at least a couple of behavioral questions.
Remember, the job interview process is usually lengthy. It'll take time to find your next job. But using the STAR interview method can help you better prepare for common interview questions. If you prepare and use tricks like the STAR method, you will find the ideal position eventually.