ACE THE INTERVIEW

STAR Interview Questions

Situation, Task, Action, Result – here's the full guide on answering STAR questions and 10+ STAR question examples.

Interviews can be really stressful.

There are so many different questions the interviewer can ask you.

How can you possibly prepare for all of them?

It gets even tougher when it comes to STAR interview questions.

These are more psychological questions that don’t rely on your tech skills.

They are all about you.

And that has a great advantage – you can fully prepare yourself for them.

To get you good and ready for all your STAR questions, we are going to find the answers to these questions:

  • What Are STAR Interview Questions?
  • How Does the STAR Method Work?
  • How to Prepare for STAR Interview Questions?

And to wrap things up, we will show you the most common STAR interview questions.

Make sure you prepare really well for those.

If you still haven’t received a callback for interview, maybe you need to make a resume that stands out a bit more.

So let’s dive in.

But if you are ready to find out how to nail all STAR interview questions, stick around.

What Are STAR Interview Questions?

STAR interview questions are behavioral questions that interviewers ask to determine some of your most important soft skills.

STAR stands for:

  • Situation – a challenge you’ve faced throughout your career
  • Task – your responsibilities in that given situation
  • Action – the steps you took to get to the best result
  • Result – the result you managed to achieve with your actions

When you are answering such questions, you need to make sure you use the required technique.

By addressing all four points of the STAR interview questions, you make sure that you address everything the interviewer wants to know.

How Does the STAR Method Work?

If you want to really nail your answer, you need to have a deeper understanding of how the STAR method works.

We’ve got you covered.

Let’s go through each of the four points of the STAR method

Situation

The first thing you need to do using this method is to create the context of your story.

Think about your relevant work experience and choose an instance that would be valuable to your potential employer.

You should pick only one event in your career history.

Your answer should not be generalized.

If you happen to not have any relevant work experience situation for the question, you can also describe an event from your education or volunteer work.

Make sure you include all the important specifics, but don’t make that part too long, as there are more important ones.

The interviewer would be much more interested in the Action and Result parts of your answer.

Task

The second part of your answer should be the Task.

It should describe your responsibilities in the situation you have started to describe.

Its goal is to provide a better understanding of the situation you were facing, and the possible actions you could have taken.

Just like the Situation, the Task should not take too long.

After all, the interviewer is eager to hear about your Action and Result.

Action

The Action is the most important part of your answer. It is what shows how you reacted to the current situation and how you managed it.

Spare no time, this part should be long and descriptive. It is what shows the interviewer if you are the right person for the job.

A common mistake here is to talk about the whole team’s actions in the given situation.

And teamwork is significant, but that question is about you. You need to show the interviewer all the things you managed to do right.

After all, he is looking to hire you, not your entire team.

Result

The final step of your answer is the Result you achieved.

It is just as critical as the Action and is an inseparable part of your answer.

The Result shows what you managed to achieve through all actions you have already described.

Try to use hard numbers, or clear examples of your work, in order to give the result more meaning.

Another thing that you can mention here is what you have learned from the situation and the actions you have taken.

How to Prepare for STAR Interview Questions?

Preparing for STAR interview questions can be stressful.

But it can get much easier if you just follow a few simple steps.

We are going to go through them one by one.

Make a list of the required qualifications

The first thing you need to do is think about the qualifications that are needed for the job position.

This usually includes your work experience and skillset, but don’t limit your search to just these two.

What can be really helpful here is for you to check a few job listings for similar positions.

By doing that, you can determine which qualifications are most important for the job you are going after.

Check out the job listing and the required skills

Once you have the skills needed for the job, you need to find out how to match your skill set to them.

Using a good amount of keywords can really help you out in getting the best result.

That includes the STAR interview questions as well.

Write a list of various situations you can use

As the STAR method relies on situations and how you managed them, you need to have some stories prepared.

Think about every situation that might be relevant to the job position you are applying for.

You need to tailor that story to fit the STAR method.

That way, it is going to show you in the best possible light.

Check out common STAR interview questions

The last essential step of your preparation is to go through the most common STAR interview questions out there.

And you need to make sure you have an answer to each and every one of them.

To get you started, we have prepared a special selection of the most common STAR interview questions for you to check out.

STAR Interview Questions

As promised, here are the most common STAR interview questions to get you going:

  • Tell me about a time you had a conflict at work
  • Can you describe a stressful situation and how you handled it?
  • Can you describe a mistake you made and how you reacted to it?
  • Tell me about a time you performed well under pressure
  • Have you ever dealt with a difficult situation involving another department?
  • Give me an example of a goal you have met
  • Give me an example of a goal you couldn’t meet and how you handled it
  • Tell me about a time you had to manage a situation with an unsatisfied client
  • Have you ever had a disagreement with an immediate supervisor?
  • Describe a time when you went above and beyond

These are just a few of the most common questions you are likely to meet in different interviews.

Make sure you do your own research as well and think about all the different behavioral questions an interviewer can ask you.

You would want to be prepared.

Takeaways: STAR Interview Questions

We are all done.

Now you know what STAR interview questions are and how to handle them in the best possible way.

Once again, what you need to do is:

  • Understand the concept of STAR questions - Situation, Task, Action, Result
  • Prepare for the STAR interview questions by:
  • Making a list of all required qualification, so that you can scan them all easily
  • Writing a list of various situations you can use in your answers
  • Check out the most common STAR questions and make sure you have an answer prepared for each one

Read once again about the structure of your STAR method answers and get your dream job in no time.

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Evgeni Asenov