Behaviour Descriptive Interviews

by Roberta

Interviews can be scary, but behaviour descriptive interviews can be terrifying if you're unprepared. This interview technique was designed to discover how you act and react in certain circumstances, and employers are looking for real life examples of how you behaved in situations relating to the questions they pose. Given that the City of Calgary and other major employers use this interview technique, we invited experts to give their best advice and recommendations as part of our recent Accelerate Your Career event at the Central Library on April 26th.

Our first presenter, Debbie, stressed one word: Prepare! Make sure you’ve got lots of relevant stories and examples to give your interviewer. The better you know yourself and the more reflection you’ve done, the better you’ll do in your interview. Know yourself, and research the company you’re interviewing with and the role you’re interviewing for.

David reminded everyone preparing for any interview to be prepared, but not so prepared and memorized that you end up sounding phony. Be genuine and yourself, be proud of your accomplishments, be aware of your strengths, and understand weaknesses or areas for improvement. And, before you leave the interview, know your next step. If the interviewer does not offer that before you leave, you should ask them. Go into every interview with a positive attitude. Remember: employers only interview strong candidates, so if you received an interview you are doing amazing. It will just be a matter of time before you land a job.

David and Debbie hosted such a lively session that we have made it available Calgary Public Library's YouTube channel.

Here are some great examples of possible questions from the Asper School of Business, while this article offers good advice on how to craft and tell your own story. For further research, our wide selection of interviewing books go into greater depth and offer a wider range of questions and strategies.