Work History Interview Questions:
Q: Where did you last work? What did you do there? When did you start and when did you leave?
A: These are basic work history interview questions. Just answer as succinctly and as accurately as possible.
Q: Did you receive any awards or promotions in your previous jobs?
A: Even if you didn’t, be prepared to say something positive about your past work performance.
Q: What was your starting and ending salary?
A: Answer honestly, but if you received more than one raise during your time at the company, say so. An example answer would be, “I started out at $_ and my ending rate was $_, with _ raises in between.” For more information on asking about potential salary, see The Salary Interview Question.
Q: Can you give me some examples of challenges you faced in your last job? How did you overcome them?
A: Think of two examples you can positively talk about.
Q: What was your favorite thing and your least favorite thing about your last job?
A: Focus on job duties or circumstances, not bosses or coworkers.
Q: What would you say was your proudest moment in your last job? In what areas did you fail?
A: Be humble when answering the first question and focus on what you learned when answering the second.
Q: Has there been one previous boss who you really worked well with? Why?
A: Focus on your ability to work well with most everybody, but also be ready to say a couple of things about one person as well.
Q: Have you had any bosses or coworkers that you didn’t work well with? Why do you think that is?
A: Again, focus on the fact that you work well with most everyone and be respectful when talking about anyone who has been the exception. You should mention someone briefly, rather than glossing over the question because your interviewer knows that you can’t have liked everyone you worked with.
Q: Why did you leave your last job? Or why were you fired?
A: Answer the first in such a way that lets your interviewer know you’re not just jumping from job to job, but had a legitimate reason for leaving your previous employment. Answer the second by being honest, but also focusing on what you learned from the disciplinary action.
Q: Can you tell me a little about the gaps in your employment?
A: Don’t say you couldn’t find a job. Talk about the positive things you did or have been doing to prepare for future employment positions, either personally or professionally.