The granddaddy of all interview questions. But don’t take the question as an invitation to recount your entire life’s history. Beware, about 85% of all interviews begin with this “unacquainted” question. Many candidates, unprepared for the question, skewer themselves by rambling, recapping their life story, delving into ancient work history or personal matters.
Start with the present and tell why you are well qualified for the position. Remember that the key to all successful interviewing is to match your qualifications to what the interviewer is looking for. In other words “you must sell what the buyer is buying. This is the single most important strategy in job search”.
Example: "I am currently the floor Manager at ABC’s, which is a busy bar and restaurant in xyz location. I’m responsible for all aspects of management, ranging from stock taking and ordering to end of day cashing up. I run a team of 15 staff and am responsible for training, hiring, and firing. The hours can be quite long, but I enjoy it and like the mix of activities from dealing with customers to managing the staff."
Before you answer this or any question it's imperative that you try to uncover your interviewer's greatest need, want, problem or goal.
To do so, make you take these two steps:
Then, ALWAYS follow-up with a second (what is your best strength?) and possibly, third question (what are your greatest weaknesses?), to draw out his needs even more. Surprisingly, it's usually this second or third question that unearths what the interviewer is most looking for.
You might ask simply, "And in addition to that?..." or, "Is there anything else you see as essential to success in this position?:
This process will not feel easy or natural at first, because it is easier simply to answer questions, but only if you uncover the employer's wants and needs will your answers make the most sense. Practice asking these key questions before giving your answers, the process will feel more natural and you will be light years ahead of the other job candidates you're competing with.