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  • Answering Weakness Questions
  • Company Research
  • Behavioral, Case, and Panel Interviews

    Rather than just probing about your previous work history, interviewers may do a behavioral (also called competency-based), case, or panel interview.

    Behavioral Interview

    The behavioral interview is based on the notion that a job candidate's previous behaviors are the best predictors of future job performance. In a behavioral interview, interviewers ask candidates to share experiences and then ask specific questions related to how they handled the situation. For example, behavioral questions may include:

    Case Interview

    A case interview is often used in interviews at management consulting firms. The interviewer discusses a business problem that might be typical for the company and asks the candidate to analyze the business scenario. These are typically two-way discussions without a correct answer. The candidate is being assessed on how they approach the problem, identify key business issues, develop a framework to analyze the situation, and work through gathering information to arrive at a possible solution. In some cases, companies are also testing basic assumptions and math (e.g. assuming the market is one-third of the US population, then we may have a market of 100 million as a total population.) Practice is essential for understanding how to approach case interviews.

    Panel Interview

    A panel interview is where a candidate is interviewed all at once by a group representing various members of the recruiting "jury" during the hiring process. In these interviews, there can be different formats, including presentation to the panel; role-based questions with each panelists asking questions pertaining to their role/interaction with the job; working session where the candidate becomes a working member of the team and making contributions as if they were already on the job; or stressful environment with panelists quickly questioning the candidate creating a stress-filled environment to test the candidate in this situation.

    Understand the format for the interviews and that company, be prepared and practice, then be confident walking into the situation.

    Follow Up and Thank You Letter

    Following an interview, there are several things that you may need to do: send a thank you letter, critique your interview, and any follow-ups from the interview.

    Thank You Letter

    A thank you letter shows respect to people who have spent time talking with you, whether an interview or informational interview. In many situations, an email thank you note is sufficient in thanking someone, however, if someone has spent considerable time or effort in helping you, a hand-written thank you note can help you stand out and reflects very favorably on you as a candidate.

    The thank you letter gives you a chance to thank the person, reiterate your discussion with them, discuss any follow-ups or points not covered. It also demonstrates your courtesy, written communication skills, and interest. The best time to write the thank you letter is immediately after the interview for best impact.

    Interview Critique

    Immediately after each interview, take time to evaluate the experience. Doing an assessment of your interview performance allows you to improve on future interviews and your job search in general. Following an interview, often you can do a self-assessment, reviewing your responses to questions, your interaction with interviewers, and any non-verbal cues from the interaction. You may also want to get company or recruiter feedback (if they will provide it), peer feedback, or expert evaluation from working with a career coach. Honestly assess how you perform in interviews so that you can improve your interview performance.

    Questions to consider during your evaluation:

    Additional Resources