What Is a Behavioral Interview?

What Is a Behavioral Interview?

Congrats! You got called into an interview...but what's that? It's with a company Glassdoor says loves the behavioral interview? Just what does that mean? Should you even bother going? Don't panic. Read on.

What Is a Behavioral Interview?

If you're in an interview and the questions start coming....

Tell me about a time a project you worked on failed?

Explain how you overcame working with a difficult co-worker.

...You're in a behavioral interview.

Behavioral interviewing is popular in some companies because managers say it gives them a better idea of what someone will actually do on the job. Instead of just giving a sales pitch for yourself, you'll be asked to tell stories about work you have done in the past, or to envision how you would do various kinds of work in the future. In case you're unclear:

A behavioral interview question (also known as STAR Interview Questions or behavior-based interview questions) is a question that aims at learning about your past “behaviors” in specific work situations. - The Interview Guys

Katharine Hansen, Ph.D writes for QuintCareers.com "The premise behind behavioral interviewing is that the most accurate predictor of future performance is past performance in similar situations. Behavioral interviewing, in fact, is said to be 55 percent predictive of future on-the-job behavior, while traditional interviewing is only 10 percent predictive."

Behavioral Interviews Can be Difficult

Why do hiring managers love asking behavioral questions? It's for a very specific reason: They want to see if you possess certain qualities that they are looking for and believe you will need to succeed in the particular position you are interviewing for.

These types of questions and interviews can be tricky, but only if you're unprepared. As part of your interview preparation process, think about events from your past that show you excelling in your work and demonstrating valuable qualities such as interpersonal skills. It may help to make each story three sentences long, remembering the acronym STAR:

S - Situation

T - Task

A - Action

R - Result

Sample Behavioral Interview Answer

Here's an example of a prepared answer: "I was working at a television station and my boss wanted to do a live webcast, which no one in the whole state had ever done before. I researched the technical requirements and determined that we could handle it, then brought together the people I needed from different departments to map out how it would work. We had several thousand viewers that afternoon and demonstrated that there was an audience for this type of product."

Nail The Interview

Feel like you want to practice? Call up your friendly Artisan Talent Recruiter and ask them to give you a few sample questions. Need more interview advice? Check out The Magic Job Interview Question You Must Ask and 5 Things Your Job Interviewer Wants You To Know.

*Editors Note: This post has been revamped from its original version and freshened up for accuracy, timeliness, and to help you get that job.

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