Behavior-Based Interview – Situation, Action & Outcome

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Wed, Feb 21 - 4:47 pm EDT | 8 years ago by
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When an organization uses behavior-based interview questions their objective is to determine how you have behaved in similar situations in the past. Does every organization use these types of questions? Nope. But many do today in the United States. Why? Because, sometimes the best resume and best interview does not NET the best employee. Sometimes, people can talk a good game and have no idea how to do what they SAY they can do. Behavior-based questions cut past all the polish and preparation to the truth of the matter. Have you done it in the past? If you have, you’ll be able to discuss it, you’ll be able to communicate the issues, challenges and successes you had in the experience. Good interviewers will know if you are credible.

When teaching life skills to my children I remind them constantly, that what they do in the "practice field" of my home, is what they will do in the "game of life." That principle is true in the "workplace game." What you did in your past employment will show up in the new job. If that is true – A savvy interviewer will ask well framed behavior-based questions. Those questions will force you to talk about a specific Situation, your Actions and the Outcome.

The only exception to different behavior is when you can communicate clear lessons learned from a particular Situation or problem. When you can clearly communicate what you will do differently in a given situation, then you are telegraphing a new skill or ability that you learned as a result of a situation or problem. Good managers are listening for those cues as well.

Your preparation for a behavior-based interview must include good stories. Stories that highlight your skills and abilities. Your accomplishments, your victories and some defeats. Make sure in your preparation that your stories fit the model of Situation, Action and Outcome or results.

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