Out-of-the-Box Interview Questions and How to Prepare for Them

Preparation is a key to a successful job interview. While some questions are easy to prepare for, like those that address your background and experience, unconventional or out-of-the-box questions can be tougher. But the good news is, even these uncommon interview questions don't have to trip you up – they just require a bit more preparation. Consider the following tips to help you know how to prepare for interview questions during your job search.



Doing Your Research

The best way to nail an interview question is to see it coming. With smart research, you can gain valuable insights into a company's hiring process, including what kind of interview questions they ask. Start by identifying people you may know who already work for the same organization, and reach out to get a sense of the interview process. Ask about any unusual questions they got, and how they replied.

Your access to insider tips doesn't end there. With a quick Internet search, you can read reviews of interviews from actual job candidates who've applied to the same companies as you. Job sites like GlassDoor.com offer many real-life accounts of the AmTrust Financial interview process, for example. Search for your potential employer to discover real candidates' reviews of their interview experience.
 

Brainstorming Potential Questions

You can't always anticipate the exact interview questions you'll receive, but you can get in the right mindset by brainstorming different types of out-of-the-box questions and how to react. In asking these kind of questions, interviewers want to see how you can handle pressure and think on your feet.

Some questions might present a problematic scenario (not necessarily work-related) and ask you how you would deal with it. Other questions could ask you to explain a simple yet abstract concept to the interviewer. You could also be asked to describe yourself in a unique way, from the color that best represents you to the animal that fits your personality. The more mentally prepared you are to receive an unconventional question, the better you'll be able to handle one.
 

Preparing Your Answers

Ultimately, the interviewer is looking to assess your ability to use logic, strong communication skills and problem-solving techniques to respond to even the most unorthodox interview questions. In many cases, there isn't a right or wrong answer, and every candidate may answer the question in a different way.

To prepare for these out-of-the-box questions, focus on developing a list of key scenarios and situations that you can apply to these questions. For example, if you're asked what animal best represents you, incorporate a story about your experience that relates to a trait of your chosen animal. If you're faced with a tough problem-solving question, reference a past challenge that you overcame. Jot down a list of your experiences and successes, and aim to incorporate them into your answers. This lets you prepare for tricky interview questions while still selling yourself for the position.

Remember, your goal when answering out-of-the-box interview questions is to provide a logical, well-thought-out response that you can articulate clearly and effectively. How you handle the question is as important as your response, so always maintain your composure. By doing your homework, anticipating possible questions, and mapping a strategy for how to tackle them, you'll be better able to make a positive impression on your interviewer, no matter how unusual the questions may be.

This material is for informational purposes only and is not legal or business advice. Neither AmTrust Financial Services, Inc. nor any of its subsidiaries or affiliates represents or warrants that the information contained herein is appropriate or suitable for any specific business or legal purpose. Readers seeking resolution of specific questions should consult their business and/or legal advisors.
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