Three Behavioral Interview Tips To Calm Your Fears

Interviews are intimidating enough already. Behavioral interviews add another layer of pressure onto an already stressful situation. Taking the time to prepare and craft a cohesive career story can make your behavioral interview go a little smoother.

The purpose of a behavioral interview is to get to know how you tick, how you’ll fit in at the establishment and to predict how you are likely to behave in the future. It can be unnerving, however, when it seems that the interviewer is trying to get inside your head.

As tempting as it is to keep your guard up, it will only interfere with interviewing effectively and winning the job. Prepare well and be yourself when answering. Your professional self – not your Friday night self. Here are some behavioral interview tips:

Do Your Homework.

Look at the company website to get a sense of what the hotel, club or restaurant is like. Do they cater to upscale clientele? Families? Business travelers? Your answers to interview questions may differ slightly depending on how they like to present themselves. Visit the location if you can. Are they understaffed and harried? Measured and precise? Take mental notes that you can use in your conversations.

Read any available reviews. Is there a common theme to any complaints? That may offer a problem you can solve for them. Are the reviews consistently positive? That is surely a point of pride that you can capitalize on.

Know yourself.

Getting to know the location will build your confidence, but you really need to take some time to remember your own background and build a career narrative. Grab a piece of paper and a pen and think of your accomplishments and challenges throughout your career.

Develop specific answers for common behavioral question topics like:

  • Making a mistake at work.
  • Handling an unhappy customer.
  • Working with a difficult colleague.
  • Demonstrating leadership.
  • Setting and achieving goals.
  • Reporting to multiple managers.
  • Making tough decisions.
  • Coping with stress.

Come up with as many situations and examples as you can. And for future, if you don’t already have one, keep a “Kudos” file where you can save positive feedback you get from employers, customers or coworkers.

Use the STAR Technique

When answering behavioral question, the STAR technique will assure that you answer each question completely and concisely without meandering:

Situation. Set up the background

Task. What was to be accomplished?

Action. How did you handle it?

Result. What was the outcome?

As scary as behavioral interviews can be, it gives the well-prepared candidate the opportunity to shine. Using these behavioral interview tips, you will be able to set yourself up for success.

When you are well prepared and ready to take the next step in your hospitality career, Horizon Hospitality is here to help. We connect hospitality executives, managers, sales professionals and chefs with rewarding positions throughout the country. Contact us today to get started.


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