Guide To Using The STAR Interviewing Technique On Behavioral Based Interview Questions

Does the prospect of an interview and answering questions about yourself fill you with dread?

Are you worried that how you perform on these questions will determine your future success?

Do you want to gain a competitive edge in job interviews?

In particular, would you like to improve the way that you plan and answer behavioral-based interview questions?

Well, you are not alone.

Most people find themselves fearful of interview situations.

Now imagine walking into a job interview knowing that you are prepared for the questions that you’ll be asked and confident that you can answer any question sent your way.

Suddenly, you become a master of interview situations.

This practical post was created for anyone that wants to improve their chances of interview success by learning about behavioral-based interview questions and the STAR interviewing technique.

After reading this post, you’ll be able to objectively identify behavioral-based interviewing questions. You’ll learn about the STAR interviewing technique. and explore tips for answering behavioral-based interview questions

The Secrets Of Behavioral-Based Interview Questions

Companies use behavioral interview questions to better understand what candidates are like.

These types of questions are designed to elicit responses on how a candidate will approach or act in certain work situations.

In fact, your answers to these behavioral questions will allow the interviewer to determine whether you will fit within the organization, or within current team structures.

In a nutshell, the interviewer is looking to see how you handle challenging situations when they happen. To illustrate, problem-based behavioral questions will be used to see how good you are at solving real-world problems.

In fact, interviewers expect you to draw on examples from your career and to share stories about your experiences. Your answers will then provide insights into your personality, knowledge, skills, and abilities and allow the interview to gauge your suitability for the role.

Behavioral-based interview questions usually start with phrases like:

  • Tell me about a time when …
  • What do you do when …
  • Have you ever …
  • Give me an example of …
  • Describe a …

To illustrate:

  1. Describe a recent difficult decision at work that you’ve had to make.
  2. Describe a time when you showed good judgment when solving a problem.
  3. Describe a time when you went beyond the roles and responsibilities in your job description to get a task completed.
  4. Describe an instance when you achieved a goal that you set yourself.
  5. Describe an instance when you had to make a quick decision that was successful.
  6. Describe an instance when you missed a solution to a problem at work.
  7. Give me examples of times that you used your logic skills to solve problems at work.
  8. Give me an example of an instance about something you tried to do but which failed miserably.
  9. Give me an example of when you showed initiative in a project.
  10. Outline a specific example of a time when you had to introduce something that was unpopular with others.
  11. Tell me about a situation in where you were able to use your influencing skills to successfully get others to do something for you at work.
  12. Tell me about a time when you had to use your negotiation skills to influence someone’s behavior.
  13. Tell me about a time when you were faced with a challenging situation that demonstrated your resilience skills.
  14. Tell me about instances when you motivated others.
  15. Tell me about the best report or document that you ever had to complete at work.
  16. Tell me how you would prioritize your tasks when you have too much to do.
  17. Using an example, talk to me about an instance where you had to deal with an upset customer.
  18. Using examples, describe how do you work with people that don’t like you.
  19. Using examples, describe how you go about managing conflict.
  20. Using examples, describe how you successfully delegated tasks in a project.
  21. Using examples, describe how you unsuccessfully delegated tasks in a project.

Introducing The Star Interviewing Technique For Answering Behavioral Based Questions

STAR is an acronym that stands for situation, task, action, and result of the situation you are describing in your answers to behavioral-based questions.

So, let’s break down that framework and how you can use the star interviewing technique to answer interview questions.

Situation: Set the scene and give the interviewer enough detail for the interviewer to understand the necessary details of your example. It is important to keep your answer specific to the situation. You need to describe what happened? Why did it happen? Who was involved? What was the main issue that arose?

Task: Describe what your responsibility was in that situation. What responsibility did you personally take to solve the problem? Did your manager assign this task to you or did you take this responsibility on your own? Were others inv as well?

Action: Explain exactly what steps you took to address it. Make sure to focus on the actions taken by you alone. As a result, it is important to use the word “I” in your answers. Give as much detail on what you did first? What happened to the situation at hand and what did you do next?

Result: Share what outcomes happened from your input. Don’t be afraid to take credit for the outcomes achieved. What was the end result of the situation? Was your manager or company happy? Did you credit or even new responsibilities because of the ay you handled this situation?

When To Use The STAR Interviewing Technique

You should always use the STAR method when you hear behavioral-based interview questions like:

  • Tell me about a time when …
  • What do you do when …
  • Have you ever …
  • Give me an example of …
  • Describe a …

Sample Question And Answer
Give me an example of when you showed initiative in a project.

Situation: In my current job, we were experiencing higher than normal quality errors on the production line.

Task: My manager asked me to see if there was anything I could do to improve this situation.

Action: I looked at all the different types of errors that were happening and categorized them based on parts and locations within the production process to see if there were any trends. I was able to identify two specific machines that were causing the errors.

Result: Quality errors were reduced by 95% immediately. My manager commended me for my efforts. I was subsequently promoted to line supervisor with a pay raise and I was given more responsibility for quality projects within the company.

Tips For Answering Behavioral Interview Questions

All modern-day interviews will include a number of behavioral-based questions so it is important to plan ahead. Below are some simple tips when using the. star interviewing technique

  • Reflect on your career to date.
  • Think of examples that will highlight your experience and expertise.
  • Review the job description for the position that you are applying for and consider what questions could be asked based on this description.
  • Prepare answers using the star method that highlights aspects of your experience that demonstrate that you are an excellent candidate for the role on offer.
  • Remember to be specific, detailed, honest, and always make sure you put yourself at the center of any answer by using the word “I”.
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