Will You Do the Job?

1. Is there anything that would prevent you from meeting the work schedule I’ve described?

What you want to do:

If you can meet the schedule, say so. If you cannot, tell the employer specifically where you will need changes. If there is a conflict with your religious obligations, now is the time to say you would need an accommodation for that.

2. Here are our attendance requirements. Will you be able to meet these requirements?

What the employer really wants to know:

Will you have a dependable attendance record?

What you want to do:

Reply with a strong “yes” or “definitely.”

Then, if you can, give a specific record from your previous job.

“In my last job I maintained an exceptional record for attendance, with fewer than 3 unscheduled absences per year.”

3. What motivates you to do your best work?

What the employer really wants to know:

Employer wants to know if you are motivated by something other than money.

What you want to do:

Make a statement that indicates you have internal motivation to perform well.

“Knowing that I have done a job to the best of my ability is motivating to me.”

Then, name something specific that others can do to help you perform a job well.

“It helps me if I know what is expected of me and get feedback about what I am doing well and where I need to improve.”

4. What is most difficult for you to do in a job? How do you deal with that?

What the employer really wants to know:

The employer wants to know if there are difficulties that will prevent you from doing a good job. The employer may also be looking for whether you will criticize others.

What you want to do:

Name something specific that is not a weakness in you and is not critical of others.

“It is difficult for me when I’m not sure which of my tasks that I have been assigned are highest in priority.”

Then, state a clear way of dealing with the difficulty that is focused on performance.

“When I’m uncertain about that, I ask my supervisor to help me set priorities so that I’m sure I am going to be working on the most important things first.”