There are many questions you can be asked during an interview, depending on the role you are applying for, how many years of experience you have, and what your career path looks like.
However, there are some questions that every candidate needs to answer so the interviewer gets a general idea of the level of research you’ve done on the role and company, what type of employee you are and how you interact with others.
Be ready to answer these 5 questions:
1. Tell me about yourself
How to answer this: Give the interviewer a concise and compelling “pitch” that shows why you are a great fit for the role and company. Talk about your current role or relevant experience you have.
For example: “I’ve worked in hospitality for the past 5 years as a front desk agent and have gained experience with interacting directly with guests to create a great experience from helping them check-in, creating itineraries based on their interests, and asking them to return when checking out. I’m looking for a new opportunity that will allow me to expand my experience into helping train and mentor other team members as well as oversee day-to-day operations, which is why I am interested in joining your team as a general manager.”
2. Why do you want to work at this hotel/restaurant?
How to answer this: Show the interviewer that you did your homework. Mention you are excited about joining a team that is nationally recognized for exceptional customer service, or a company that is dedicated to changing the industry through initiatives (mention their specific ones), or that has a culture that matches what you are looking for.
For example: “I’ve read about all of the sustainability and environmental initiatives your company and property has recently taken on and I am passionate about working on a team that is helping to change the industry and make our world better while still delivering exceptional guest experiences.”
3. Can you describe a time you handled a difficult guest
How to answer this: Keep this answer as positive as possible. Do not speak poorly of the guest, instead talk about the steps you took to figure out what the problem was and what solution would help the guest the most. This is a behavioral interview question, make sure to use the STAR method to answer.
For example: “There was a guest once that came to the front desk upset that the room they checked into was not clean. I gave the guest the respect of listening to them completely without interrupting which also allowed me to pick up on context clues that they had a bad travel day and were already upset before checking into the hotel. I apologized to the guest and asked them if they would like me to have a housekeeper return to their room and clean while I made an immediate reservation for them at or hotel restaurant so they could sit and have a drink and be waited on by our team, and after their meal, the room would be ready for them to head to. I wanted to offer them a chance to relax and decompress with a meal instead of immediately offering them a discount, and this solution worked well for the guest.
They came back after their meal and complimented our servers and the meal and told me that they felt much better now that they were able to eat and relax for a little bit.”
4. Where do you see yourself in # years?
How to answer this: It’s okay to not really know the answer to this, or to just assume. It’s tough to know what tomorrow will look like, much less 5 years from now. The interviewer asks this to see if you’ve given your career path any thought as well as if the role aligns with your goals. Talk about some goals you’d like to accomplish that you think the company and position will help you accomplish.
For example: “I would like to work my way up to a leadership position that allows me to manage a budget as well as help mentor team members to also grow into their career path.”
5. Do you have any questions for me?
How to answer this: Make sure to have 3-5 questions ready to ask at the end of your interview. Aim to ask then 2 or 3 of the questions but have a few extra prepared in case they answer your questions throughout the interview. This will show your interest in the position and the company.
For example: “What does the first 30.60.90 days for the person in the position look like?”
“What skills or personality traits do you think will make someone successful in this position?”
“What has been your favorite part of working at this company?”
You can find other questions and how to answer them here.
Get tips on what to avoid saying during an interview here.