top of page

5 Tips: What to answer when you don't know the answer in an interview

You can be asked questions during a job interview that you are unsure of how to respond to right away. These inquiries might go beyond your area of expertise, so it might be difficult to give a thorough, precise response. You can improve your chances of getting a job offer from an employer by learning how to respond to these questions and developing your own powerful techniques.



Spend some time ahead creating a few "fail-safe" responses that will decrease the impact of your knowledge gap in order to prevent getting so stumped by an interview question that you can barely manage a half-baked response. In fact, if you are thoughtful in your response to some challenging interview questions, you can even turn a potentially awkward circumstance into an opportunity to demonstrate your capacity for problem-solving, turn what could have been a negative conversation into a positive one, reaffirm your interest in the organization, and highlight other noteworthy qualities or skills.


When you are unsure of how to respond to a question at an interview, follow these tips to impress the interviewer.


1. Be patient.

Priorities first Declare that you are considering the query and that it was asked. Simply saying, "Hmm...a that's wonderful question. You can say, "Let me think about that, while I work through my initial ideas on how to address the subject. It's crucial to keep this in mind because it feels so natural to fill up any pauses in conversation with words to prevent awkward silences. Make sure you have time to collect your thoughts before speaking so that you don't accidentally reveal that you are, hmm, totally baffled.


2. Don't lie under any circumstances.

According to Daniel Space, a human resources consultant with business partners in strategic staffing, it's acceptable to make a similar comparison and respond, "I haven't been put in that situation specifically yet, but here's how I think I would handle it," if you are unable to draw from personal experience to do so. The largest error he observes is when candidates try to lie rather than admitting their ignorance. When a job candidate for an HR manager was asked to describe how they would handle a specific employee relations problem during an interview, Space claimed he saw this firsthand.


3. Speak out loud

Speaking your thoughts out loud might also help you digest difficult questions and come up with a satisfying solution. With this approach, you can show the hiring manager how you thought about the question's consequences. Speaking your thoughts out loud will help you to find additional pertinent facts that will help you frame your response. For instance, if the hiring manager inquires about your method for editing your own work during an interview for a writing position, try visualizing each stage and how you would carry it out. Keep in mind to add clarifications when necessary. If you don't have a consistent editing process, thinking through the logical steps of the procedure can help you reach an effective answer.


4. Admit your uncertainty

When you don't know the solution to a complicated question, it could be good to convey uncertainty. This might occur if the questioner poses a sophisticated or in-depth query that necessitates additional research or a high level of understanding of a niche area of your expertise. Many employers admire integrity in a candidate, which may be demonstrated by being open and forthright about the topics you understand. Additionally, you may find it easier to adapt the conversation to a familiar subject. When employing this strategy, apologize and briefly explain the reason(s) why you're stumped on the question's response. You may say, for instance, that the query concerns a subject you haven't studied recently or refers to a strange specialty in your field.


5. Change

Own up and try to steer the conversation to a topic you are comfortable with if you are faced with a question you genuinely can't answer. You might not be able to speak specifically about a certain skill, but if you can relate it to other skills, you'll do much better than simply stating that you lack the desired skill. Consider the scenario where you applied for a job that requested for experience in social media marketing and were afterwards questioned about it. Try refocusing the answer on something you do have experience with if you simply lack it.


Sources:

  1. https://www.indeed.com/career-advice/interviewing/how-to-answer-question-you-dont-know

  2. https://www.themuse.com/advice/4-ways-to-handle-interview-questions-you-dont-know-how-to-answer

  3. https://www.biospace.com/article/what-to-do-when-you-don-t-know-the-answer-to-a-job-interview-question/

  4. https://www.huffpost.com/entry/job-interview-question-stump_l_620a9b84e4b083bd1cc2ab8d

6 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All
bottom of page