It's no secret that interviews can be daunting. The fate of whether we'll get the job we desire all comes down to sitting in a room and being questioned on your fit for the role, all while we think of the best things to say and try not to let our nerves show.
Of course, preparing for an interview is vital because "winging it" very seldom works. There's no point in attending an interview when you've not prepared your answers for certain questions that may pop up, or not done your research into the company in question. Chances are, the interviewer will catch on, and you'll only make yourself look foolish.
However, there are some questions out there that truly terrible, so much so that it's questionable as to why they're still being used today.
Here's a handful of interview questions many of us loathe.
1) What are your weaknesses?
Not only is this question ridiculous, but actually a little unfair at the same time. The point of a job interview is to sell yourself in the best possible way. You want to prove your potential to the interviewer and talk about why you feel you'd be a good fit for the role in question. Being asked about strengths is good, as it'll give you the opportunity to talk about your best qualities and aspects relevant to the job. However, weaknesses? Not so good.
While being honest is a good thing, you don't want to be too honest about your weaknesses as it may put you at risk of not being progressed forward in the role. It's little wonder why people struggle with this one, because what is the best answer? This question may seem like a standard one for the interviewer, but it only puts a bad light on the interviewee.
2) Out of x/y number of candidates, why should we hire you?
Trying to stand out from other candidates is challenging enough, but it's even more so when you're asked why you should be hired out of all of them. It's a difficult, and an absurd question to ask because you are being to asked to compare yourself to people you don't know anything about. How are you supposed to answer that, when you know nothing of their own experience, qualifications or skills? Asking the latter ("why should we hire you?") is an okay question as it'll give you the opportunity to sell yourself, but being asked to compare yourself to others isn't so much.
3) Where do you see yourself in five years?
Many of us don't like this question. Not only because we simply don't know where we're going to be in five or so years' time, but does it really matter to them? After all, they aren't making you an offer to work for them for five years (especially if you're applying for a temporary role), so why is it any of their business?
Also, five years is a long time and no one can predict what's going to happen in that time. Sure, a career plan works, but even so, five years is far too long of a plan to make sense to most.
4) Tell me about yourself
This is a bad question as it only shows a lack of interest or preparation on the interviewer's part, as they should've looked into this on the candidate's resume. Also, the question is so open-ended, that it's a struggle to know where to start.
As bad as these questions are, they are still being used in interviews and most likely still will be in future. However, the best we can do is prepare ourselves for when these questions likely arise, so we can come up with a solid anwer that'll satisfy both the interviewer and candidate. Even if the question is a bad one, it still needs to be answered, so ensure that you prepare your answer beforehand so you don't find yourself in an awkward and uncomfortable position as you struggle to find it.
Always prepare and remember - winging it just won't do!