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Tricky Job Interview Questions and Answers: How to Handle Interviews and Get the Job You Want

e-Book (pdf) – 144 pages – ISBN 0-9542634-0-5

by Peter Gerstmann (Author), Real Tests Online .com

This practical guide shows how to prepare and how to take the right approach to be better placed for your job interview success.

Packed with 80 tricky questions with suggested best answers and much more besides (see below) – all you need for a successful job interview in this handy, concise, quick and easy to use guide.

Only$1.95USD – Instant Access Download


On This Page

Product Overview

Example Tricky Job Interview Questions and Answers

Customer Reviews

Editorial Reviews



Product Overview

It’s well known that the best qualified candidates don’t always get the job. Success or failure at a job interview depends on how well you present yourself and handle questions, particularly difficult job interview questions of the tricky or ‘killer’ kind!

Unfortunately, many good candidates fail because they are over anxious or inadequately prepared. Yet simply applying the right approach and easy to use proven techniques found in this guide can make all the difference between success and failure.

This optimized e-Book has an easy to read layout, extensive cross-reference links, and unlimited print permission for those who like to read their e-Books on paper. It contains:

  • 80 tricky job interview questions and best answers – you won’t get caught off-guard answering difficult interview questions in your job interview

  • 60 job interview questions you could or should ask (many job candidates fail at this point in their interview)

  • 60 job interview questions for college leavers who do not yet have a strong employment track record

  • Tried and tested job interview tips and techniques to ensure your job interview success

  • How to handle special or unusual job interview situations, including panel interviews, assessment centers, psychometric tests, personality tests, ability tests, group exercises, and more

  • What job interviewers are really looking for – three job interview questions all job interview questions are based upon

  • How to stay in control and steer the job interviewer away from negatives

  • How to package your strengths and keep your weaknesses out of the spotlight

  • How to head off areas likely to be probed in your job interview

  • Tips for negotiating your salary and conditions during your job interview

  • Job interview checklists: pre-interview, tips for a smoother job interview experience, and job interview pitfalls to avoid

Tricky Job Interview Questions and Answers can help you by:

  • Eliminating anxiety

  • Building your confidence

  • Preparing you for job interview success – quickly!

Download now – you’ll soon be ready for job interview success…

Only$1.95USD – Instant Access Download


Example Tricky Job Interview Questions and Answers

During a job interview, a variety of questions will be asked. There are no perfect answers, yet some thought and discussion about potentially tricky subjects can help avoid disaster.

Below are examples of tricky interview questions, with suggested responses, taken from Tricky Job Interview Questions and Answers: How to Get the Job you Really Want:

Tell me about yourself?

The classic opener which gives the interviewer time to size you up – if you let them. Give a brief overview of your career (prepared and rehearsed in advance), beginning with your education and taking the interviewer through key job changes. Add one or two major achievements and then turn the interview back to them with, “So I can better relate my experience to you, could you please tell me a little about your (company, department, etc.)?”

Have you changed jobs frequently? Are you a job hopper?

Work out in advance a good rationale for your moves. People do change jobs and if your reasons are sound, say so. Don’t be defensive.

Some acceptable reasons: Reorganization (a new manager arrives and brings in her team), the company was in difficulty and had a massive lay off, a major contract or customer was lost resulting in loss of sales, the company was sold, you were offered a relocation that would have meant no apparent opportunity, or…

Reasons to avoid: Didn’t get along with employer or other people, didn’t like the management policies, passed over for an increase in salary, too much pressure, too much work, too much overtime, too many arguments, problems of health, personal problems interfering with work, or… Avoid long stories and negatives.

Do you mind taking some psychological tests?

If this is their policy, you have no choice. Try, though, to arrange beforehand to see and review the results. This way you will learn something about yourself.

What salary are you looking for?

Stress opportunity and potential. A return question: “It’s hard to discuss salary without knowing more about the job or responsibilities.” Or, if you are discussing a specific job: “What’s your range?” Then relate your experience to the range without being precise: “I think my experience would put me near the high end of your range, don’t you?” Don’t volunteer information about your past salary.

Do you know how to motivate people?

This is a leadership question. Know what it takes to be a quality leader. In preparation, think of the best people you have worked for and list their attributes in leadership. Recognition and helping the people who depend on you often weigh as heavily in motivation as monetary reward.

One important key to being a great manager is to be able to delegate while maintaining control. If you can show some achievements demonstrating this ability, you are top management material.

What do you not like to do?

A loaded question. A positive reply might be, “I’m the kind of person who does whatever is necessary to get the job done. When I do run into something disagreeable, I try to do it first and get it behind me. I have no particular dislikes.”

Would you like to get 80 similar questions and answers (including gut-wrenchers like What’s your greatest weakness?, Have you ever been fired?, Describe your ideal job?, Why should we hire you?, Don’t you feel overqualified?, What are your short, medium and long-term goals?, Why have you decided to change career?, Does your employer know you’re going to leave?, What’s your biggest failure to date?, How do you react to criticism?), PLUS 60 questions for college leavers/graduates, PLUS 60 questions for you to ask (or NOT ask!) at job interview, PLUS competition-beating strategy, tips, techniques, and more besides?

Download now – you’ll soon be ready for job interview success…

Only$1.95USD – Instant Access Download


Customer Reviews


5-Star Amazon Review

Tricky Job Interview Questions and Answers – P. Gerstmann

There are two versions of this publication: a printed paperback and an e-download (digital book) in Adobe [pdf] format.

The publisher states that this book “gets to the point without padding” and “does not talk down to the reader” and this is exactly what makes it so accessible and readable.

Full of extremely practical advice, without distracting jargon, this book is a MUST for anyone who is currently job-seeking or changing careers and is equally suitable for first-time job seekers and seasoned executives. Additionally, it is also an excellent reference guide for those who are in the interviewer’s seat as it gives a clear overview of what the interview process is REALLY all about and how it tends to be structured.

Even if you have had a series of successful first and second interviews, this book is guaranteed to remind you of fundamental concepts which you may have forgotten during your job search and provides invaluable coaching (and more importantly, insight) with respect to questions like “What are your weaknesses?”, “Why should we hire you?” and “What salary are you looking for?”.

Briefly put, the book starts by outlining that interviewers have three broad issues in mind: can the individual do the job, will the individual do the job and will the individual fit in? This sets the tone for the rest of the book and helps you to interact easily and effectively with the advice and information contained. Don’t be surprised to find yourself re-reading whole sections of this book as you continually assess and re-assess your interview performance. This book really gets you thinking critically and strategically about your entire interviewing technique.

Crammed with loads of practical advice, this book is exceptional value for money and should be on every job-seeker’s bookshelf.

Jem D, Review of Tricky Job Interview Questions and Answers, retrieved from Amazon UK – copyright Amazon, all rights reserved

Download now – you’ll soon be ready for job interview success…

Only$1.95USD – Instant Access Download


Customer Comments

“Hello Peter,

I’m absolutely delighted to report that I received a call this morning offering me the job! I definitely attribute this success to your wonderful little book, Tricky Job Interview Questions and Answers. Although I only read it the night before the interview, the key points were easy to grasp, and I was able to take them on board immediately.

I frequently used the techniques you mentioned during the job interview – and found in the end that I actually quite enjoyed the job interview experience. A first for me! The job interview was followed by a psychometric test, which I didn’t do too well in. I raised this in the call when they offered me the job, and apparently, the strength of the job interview is what clinched it for me in the end.

Thank you so much for the wonderful advice. It’s enabled me to secure a job I know I’ll love, and I know it’ll be invaluable in the future.”

Sally Johnson

“Great info! I’m in Human Resources – it’s always interesting to see how job candidates are preparing.”

Dawn Jenkins

“Thanks to your help I feel relaxed before my interview. Thanks again.”

Sylvia Thomas

“Awesome! Lot’s of people (myself included) need these kinds of guidelines. They helped me think about other things/issues or another approach or way to answer the job interview questions. Extremely useful. Thank you!”

Liz Sheppard

“I was on my way to an interview and needed to just touch base with other sites and this one came through like a champ. I took the questions with me and read them twice while waiting for the panel to prepare for my interview. Boy, I was so confident once I got things in my head from this book.”

Joel Bremner

Download now – you’ll soon be ready for job interview success…

Only$1.95USD – Instant Access Download


Editorial Reviews


From the Publisher – PGA Group

What makes Tricky Job Interview Questions and Answers different is that it: gets to the point without padding; is written by an expert in the field of selection and psychometric testing; does not talk down to the reader; has been designed to be highly usable as well as useful, with extensive cross-referencing and a Checklists and Summaries part for those in a hurry or wanting a quick overview or refresher; and it works!


From the Author – Peter Gerstmann

Several years ago I was invited to develop and deliver a redundancy Job Search Workshop for a multinational corporation in the computer industry. I am glad to say that the participants were successful in gaining new positions quickly, many with improved pay and conditions, and at a time of economic uncertainty.

I wrote Tricky Job Interview Questions and Answers in response to requests from many individuals wanting a practical guide to dealing effectively with job selection interviews. This latest edition has been enhanced and extended, but in keeping with the original goals of being practical and easy to use. I hope that you too benefit from the wealth of experience that Tricky Job Interview Questions and Answers is based upon.


About the Author – Peter Gerstmann

Peter Gerstmann

Peter Gerstmann, the author of Tricky Job Interview Questions and Answers, is Project Director of Real Tests Online .com and Founder and Principal of the publisher, PGA Group Consulting Psychologists -, an independent professional practice of consulting psychologists and organizational development specialists.

Find out more about PGA Group and about Peter Gerstmann there.

Find out about Real Tests Online .com and why we promote free real online tests for anyone to take.

Download now – you’ll soon be ready for job interview success…

Only$1.95USD – Instant Access Download


Book Excerpt

Excerpted, with permission, from Tricky Job Interview Questions and Answers: How to Handle Interviews and Get the Job You Want, Copyright © PGA Group, Publisher, all rights reserved.

9. Areas Very Likely to Be Probed

Whatever the position on offer, there are certain questions which you are likely to be asked or certain situations which will prompt close scrutiny.

You are very likely to be asked toward the end of the interview if you have any questions. This special topic is featured, together with extensive example questions, in Chapter 12, What Questions Have You for Us? (page 93).

Below are areas which are very likely to be probed by the interviewer [gaps and the unexpected, your weaknesses, and topical areas]:

Gaps and the Unexpected

While gaps and unexpected twists in your career history will raise a ‘high-risk’ flag, you may still be interviewed if you are perceived as otherwise being a strong candidate. Nonetheless, you can expect to be questioned closely on these topics. Similarly, doing exceptionally well will attract as many questions as not coming up to expectations.

While preparing to interview you the interviewer will be considering what they would have expected in your career in terms of job moves and promotion, given your qualifications and experience, and what has actually taken place.

The interviewer will be probing to gain insights into your aspirations, motivations, and your value systems. Questions about your job will reveal your skills, experience and knowledge. Questions about the moves you made and why will uncover how you apply your skills, experience, and knowledge, and what kind of person you are. Therefore, you must be prepared to talk about these areas by thinking through suitable answers which can be delivered positively. For example:

Interviewer: “What was the reason for the year off before university?”

Interviewee: “I wanted to travel to broaden my horizons so I planned and self-funded a working tour of southern Europe. It was a valuable experience because…”


Interviewer: “What was the reason for the three-month gap in your employment record?”

Interviewee: “If my career was going to develop in the way that I wanted it was important for me to review my total situation and examine my strengths, weaknesses and opportunities, then choose the appropriate sector. I had several job offers which I turned down and that is why there is a three-month break. I’m glad that I did it that way because…”

Your Weaknesses

If asked questions about your strengths, you are likely to be asked questions about your weaknesses too. It would be unrealistic to claim that you do not have any. Remember that negative information has a greater significance for interviewers than positive information. Therefore, you will have to be very careful about how you handle this area. Remember too that you do not have to answer interviewers’ questions, only respond to them (see the section Choose What You Say, Stay in Control (page 45), in Chapter 8, The Right Approach (page45)). You could use the following approach:

  • Choose a trait about your personality or character which is obviously true

  • Extend that trait until it becomes a fault

  • Put it back in the distant past

  • Show how you have overcome it

  • Confirm that it is no longer a problem

  • Stay silent

For example:

Interviewer: “Well Mr Roberts, you have told us all about your strengths. What weaknesses do you have?”

Interviewee: “Well, I’m the sort of person who likes to get things done and I push myself quite hard. The trouble was, in my first management position, I would push all my subordinates in the same way. Fortunately, I learnt early on that not everyone gives of their best when kept under close supervision, and it was a good lesson to learn.”


Interviewee: “I’m the sort of person for whom it’s important to get things right, so I’m a great gatherer of information and details. However, I did learn early on in my management career that it is sometimes more important to make the decision than to go on collecting facts. It’s a difficult balancing act but I manage my need for detail very well now.”

By leading with a strength, the interviewer is pre-conditioned. In the above example, it is important to get things done or get things right, so your weaknesses will more likely be accepted.

You probably noticed that the question is phrased in the plural: “What weaknesses do you have?” Only ever admit to one and let the interviewer specifically ask for another. If asked for another weakness, confess to ‘working too hard’ or ‘being over-committed.’

Topical Areas

Interviewers often will want to find out about you as a person, not just as an employee. Two popular ways of doing this are to ask you about what you do in your free time (see the section Your Interests below), or what has taken your interest in the news lately.

The theory is that your interests and answers will indicate your values, motivations, and possibly your belief systems. ‘Topical’ questions can also show how rounded a person you are, and whether you are able to see beyond the confines of work. Now that you are aware of the rationale of such questions, you can anticipate and prepare your answers.

It is very important for you to give pros and cons on both sides of an argument. As well as showing that you are an informed person, you will also show that you:

  • Are fluent

  • Are balanced

  • Can make a judgement

These talents are useful in the performance of most jobs.

Excerpts above taken, with permission, from Tricky Job Interview Questions and Answers: How to Handle Interviews and Get the Job You Want, Copyright © PGA Group, Publisher, all rights reserved.

Download now – you’ll soon be ready for job interview success…

Only$1.95USD – Instant Access Download

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