Interview Question: Do You Prefer a Structured Routine or One With Change and New Experiences?
All jobs are tedious. Artists have to paint every day. Professional athletes have to play the same positions. Inventors have to sit and think for hours on end. Yet some jobs have more excitement than others. Project managers, for example, need to put on several different hats if they want to achieve their milestones, which make them do new tasks regularly to ensure that the work is getting completed. Other jobs are extremely tedious. An accountant looks at numbers all day, and uses those numbers in a similar fashion with each passing hour.
How to Answer
Your answer should not be one or the other. It should be both, with more focus paid to the one that is more common with your job (tedium, excitement). Number crunchers with incredibly tedious tasks should focus more on tedium, while those that face exciting new challenges often should put the focus on excitement. Either way, the answer should still be both.
“Definitely change. I love new tasks. Doing the same thing every day can get really boring, and change is how I keep it exciting.”
Except you may have to do the same thing every day at your job, so you don’t want to make this statement.
“Both. Tedium is comfortable, and comfortable tasks are always enjoyable. Yet as I grow within the company, I hope to take on new challenges, and the freshness of these new responsibilities will often make the job exciting.”
If you are applying to a job with less tedium, you can switch those two sentences around, which makes it look like challenges are exciting but you are okay with tedium.
Take Away Interview Tips
- Don’t answer one or the other. Answer both.
- Focus most on what you will encounter most at your job.
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