A student complained to me about a tough question she received at a PR work experience interview. ‘What sector are you hoping to work in?’ she was asked. She’s capable, but still in her first year, and so found it hard to answer. Yet it’s only a variant of the most predictable interview question of all: ‘Why do you want to work for our company?’
The hardest final interview question I ever faced was when I was asked to summarise the strengths and weaknesses of all the colleagues within the same company who had interviewed me previously. It’s hard to remember and analyse the information, thinking on your feet; it’s hard to know how critical or how fawning to be of colleagues you might find yourself working with. In other words, it was a brilliant line of questioning for a senior public relations post. I didn’t get the job.