A: Maybe in about twenty years, but by then, I suspect you'll be running the entire company and will need a good, loyal lieutenant to help you manage this department!
2.Q: What if you work here for five years and don't get promoted? Many of our employees don't. Won't you find it frustrating?
A: I consider myself ambitious, but I'm also practical. As long as I am continuing to learn and grow within my position, I'll be a happy camper. Different companies promote people at different rates, and I'm pretty confident that working for you will keep my motivated and mentally stimulated for several years to come.
3.Q: What is your biggest weakness that's really a weakness, and not a secret strength?
A: I am extremely impatient. I expect my employees to prove themselves on the very first assignment. If they fail, my tendency is to stop delegating to them and start doing everything myself. To compensate for my own weakness, however, I have started to really prep my people on exactly what will be expected of them.
4.Q: You have changed careers before. Why should I let you experiment on my nickel?
A. As a career-changer, I believe that I'm a better employee because I've gained a lot of diverse skills from moving around. These skills help me solve problems creatively.
5.Q: If you knew that things at your company were rocky, why didn't you get out of the company sooner?
A: I was working so hard to keep my job while everyone around me was being cut that I didn't have any time left over to look for another job. With all of the mergers that have been happening in our field, layoffs are a way of life. At least I gave it my best shot!
6.Q: If you were running a company that produces X and the market wastanking for that product, what would you do?
A: I would search for new markets for the product while I spurred the engineers to change the product to make it more marketable to its original core audience.
7.Q: You majored in philosophy. How did that prepare you for this career?
A: Philosophy didn't prepare me for a career in architecture at all. But it did force me to become philosophical about my prospects. After two years of trying to figure out what to do with my life, I visited Chicago one weekend, and was absolutely spell bound by the gorgeous architecture all around me. I came home, applied to architecture schools all over the country, and was accepted by one of the best. I've never looked back...this is definitely the career that I was meant to be in.
8.Q: Are you telling me that, now that you're forty-something, you would be willing to start at an entry-level position just to get your foot in the door here?
A: Sometimes you need to take a step backward to move your career forward. Starting in an entry-level role would allow me to learn your business from the ground up. The career that I've been in is so different than yours that I would love the opportunity to start over again in your field. The salary cut will be well worth it.
9.Q: From your resume, I notice that you interned at a small investment banking boutique. Did you pursue a full-time job offer with them? What happened?
A: Yes, I did very well at my internship, and I had originally assumed that I would come on staff once I graduated from college. However, XX drastically cut back the number of new hires they were planning. As fate would have it, they will not be hiring any of the interns they had last summer. I love working at XX, and I brought some references with me today to show you that my job performance there was stellar.
10.Q: From your resume, it looks like you were fired twice. How did that make you feel?
A: After I recuperated from the shock both times, it made me feel stronger. It's true that I was fired twice, but I managed to bounce back both times and land jobs that gave me more responsibility, paid me more money, and were at better firms.