Matthews & Stephens Associates Career Resource Center: Answering the Questions

Career Resource Center

Answering Questions

5 things about you that an interviewer wants to know

Traditional questions: samples

Challenging questions
Typically, difficult questions are those that could potentiality bring up a subject or event that might present you in a less than favorable way. Practice your answers to these questions and make sure that you have created an honest answer with the best possible, positive spin. Write down any questions that you are concerned about so they can be adequately addressed. If you are concerned about the best way to handle a question or a particular line of questioning, make sure to prepare thoroughly. Listen carefully to the question and wait until the interviewer is finished and ask for clarification if needed. Look relaxed and actively listen. The interviewer may give you some clues, as to what is the right or wrong answer.

Inappropriate/illegal questions

Sample questions that may be asked

Sample questions that may not be asked

What to do if you are asked an illegal question
Rarely are interviewers pre-meditated in asking discriminating questions. Many hiring managers are not experienced interviewers or often don’t know what questions are out of bounds. Often they realize their question was not proper immediately and retract the question. The objective is to handle the question and its response with professionalism. You have three choices:

Salary questions
In most situations, it is not appropriate to discuss salary, vacations, retirement, etc. The interview is a process and you need to learn more about the employer and the position, not the salary and benefit package.


Matthews & Stephens Associates, Inc.
1344 Silas Deane Highway
Rocky Hill, CT 06067
Phone: 860.258.1995
Fax: 860.258.1998