Grow your career on

Advanced Search

Answering a Difficult Question in an Interview

Answering a difficult question in an interview

There are sometimes questions in an interview that may present difficulty in the answering. Gaps in your CV, unexplained departure from a job and so forth can present themselves as difficult subjects to navigate around. They can cause unnecessary anxiety and you to become flustered and nervous. The following guidelines may help you work around these questions so to present yourself in a positive light while still giving the interviewer adequate and correct information

Be Succinct

Describe the reason for the gap in your CV or for you sudden departure from a job directly and succinctly. Do not go into great detail unless they ask. The longer you speak on the subject the more suspicious the interviewer becomes. For example: When you're asked why you left you could state: "My company merged with another firm and the new management wanted to bring in their own team. Prior to the merger I was recognized as a top performer at the company."

Provide Evidence

You could then say you're happy to provide references from the former company to verify your top performance. Demonstrating a confidence to provide references is a powerful way to ensure you are believed.

Tell the Truth

Always be honest to why there are gaps in your education or job history. These are often easily explained and understood by the interviewer. If you were fired or left a job suddenly stay with the facts of what happened, what you did, how you felt and what you learned. If you left a job interviewers want to believe you were not the problem and understand how you handled yourself.

What Did You Learn

For every gap or weakness in you CV there is an opportunity to describe what you learned and how you will handle things differently in the future. Describing what you learned positively demonstrates that you are a life-long learner and you look on the positive side of most scenarios.

Positive Perspective

State the facts in a positive manner. Any negativity you express will only reflect negatively on you. If you're angry about the situation, you'll need to process that anger in another manner before you interview. The interview is the last place to express anger about anything.

Eye Contact

Look the interviewer in the eyes when responding. This will convey your confidence, communicate that this is the truth and that you have nothing to hide.

Conquer Your Fear

Write out your response and practice saying it. First, practice responding out loud to yourself, and then practice saying it to another person. Ask a friend to practice interview you. Practice until you are comfortable with the words you say and how you deliver them.

This article was provided by Michael R. Neece CEO, Interview Mastery