4 Types Of Interviews (And How To Prepare For Them)

Types of Interviews - person being interviewed by a panel

Stepping into any interview can be a daunting experience, especially if you’re unsure of what to expect. Thankfully, preparing for an interview properly can help you relax beforehand and prove yourself in what would otherwise be a stressful situation.

To many budding job seekers’ surprise, there are many types of interviews that your potential employer could throw at you. From behavioural interviews and one on ones to case interviews or something more situational – we’re here to help you understand how each one’s going to work and how best to prepare.

To learn more about interview types you can expect to come up against while searching for your new job, read on now. Or, if you’d like find out how you can improve your professionalism and bolster your career prospects, head over to our Career blog page.

One to one interviews

One to one interviews are by the far most common interview type you’ll be likely to face. This is normally because one to one interviews are the default style that many companies will use for the majority of their roles.

However, one to one interviews can be broken down into two varieties but they do also combine into one for many companies. The first subtype of one to one interviews is the structured approach. Here, you’ll be asked a predetermined set of questions that are designed to effectively evaluate your skills in areas that are relevant to the position you’ve applied for.

Though it’s not commonly seen, you may be walking into a one to one unstructured interview. In this situation, the interviewer will ask you a wide range of questions and the interview may seem more like a friendly conversation. In reality, this method alone isn’t very good at determining candidates’ capabilities so you may just get a little bit of this at the end of a structured interview.

Behavioural interviews

An interviewer has one main priority and that’s to ensure they only select the right person for the job. This is where behavioural interview types can come in handy for uncovering a candidate’s past to predict how future situations might play out. Obviously, this isn’t an interviewer getting out a crystal ball but they will ask you some difficult questions.

Prepare to be asked about your worst professional mistakes or any workplace confrontations. Don’t be afraid to speak the truth as long as you carefully describe the situation, how you overcame it and the lessons you learned from it.

If your interviewer is a human being they will understand that everyone makes mistakes and has to deal with problem from time to time. This type of interview isn’t designed to trip you up, it’s designed to see if you’ve learned from life lessons when you’ve have the chance.

Situational interviews

While behavioural interviews are designed to predict your future behaviour from your past performance, situational interviews focus solely on your future performance. Preparing for an interview of this type can be more challenging as you will probably be given a hypothetical problem to solve.

Interviewers are really trying to see how you handle a challenging problem or a difficult moment in the workplace. Try to imagine being in a stressful position at your new job where you may be in a position of blame, have to be the bearer of bad news or overcome a highly stressful situation.

Make sure you answer the question honestly, concisely and include any terms that are relevant to your role. The key here is remembering to remain calm and maintain a very direct approach to the problem.

Case interviews

When a company wants to know how you would solve a specific business problem they will likely invite you in for a case interview. These types of interviews typically require you to think on the spot like a situational interview or prepare a presentation for evaluation.

Make sure you thoroughly research the company you’re being interviewed by and take a look at some case interview example questions to help you prepare. Lastly, consider who you’ll be speaking to and the type of professional responses that will be expected from you.

While there are many types of interviews you could face, knowing how to prepare for an interview is going to get through most situations. If you’d like to read more career advice material then please visit our Career blog page now.

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