Internship fever is coming across Universities all around the world. It is about the time when the first and even second rounds of interviews are about to begin for the leaders of the financial and banking industry to choose their interns for the upcoming season.
To make sure you land on your dream internship you need to be well prepared to face the interviewer and the best way to do that is to study some of the most popular questions they are likely to ask. Here are some of the most common ones:
1. Questions that test your attitude: these are also known as competency questions and are focused on evaluating your behavior in the past as it is likely to be a mirror to what an employer could expect from you in the future. Make sure you prepare a few examples based on your life experiences which would reflect how you acted when:
a. You faced a challenge
b. You had to take initiative
c. You were managing a team and someone was not respecting deadlines, etc.
2. Questions that study your motivation: these are aiming to decipher why you chose this job, this company and this sector. Further, they are aiming to see whether you are fully aware of the responsibilities and tasks that a specific position requires. Common questions are:
a. Why did you chose to do Marketing, not sales?
b. Why do you want to work for us and not one of the competitors?
3. Questions that require logic: many high-tech companies have become famous for experimenting with so called brain-teasers during an interview. These questions do not have an apparent relevance to the job position and often don´t even have a right answer. However, they aim to see how a candidate would react when under pressure or given a tasks that they would now have a pre-established way to address. Often these questions sound like:
a. If Germans were the tallest people in the world, how would you prove it? (real question from an HP interview)
b. How would you cure world hunger? (a question asked by Amazon.com)
c. Spell Mississippi.
(Check out more of the Weirdest Questions of a job interview for 2011)
4. Questions to test your practical knowledge of the job: evidently these questions give you the opportunity to demonstrate your knowledge, skills and experience in a given field. They would often focus on asking your opinion on current matters in the finance and banking industry or on specifics about the exact job that you are expected to do. Some examples are:
a. What’s a Price/Earning (P/E) ratio and how do you use it?
b. What is meant by public accounting?
c. What´s the Dow at now?
5. Questions you should ask: you would always be invited to ask questions. Make sure you know whom you are talking to at the interview. If it is the HR manager probably their knowledge of banking would be limited, yet they could give you insight on the job market and the interviews that they have been conducting along with the general atmosphere in the company. If it is the hiring manager, they could give you their perspective on current events or on the personal expectations they have from the intern that they chose. Do not waste your opportunity to ask about a paycheck or the days off you would be allowed to take. Focus on questions like:
a. What skills do I need to have most to help the team?
b. If I were hired, what would you expect me to achieve in the first 2-3-6 months?
(More questions you should ask, & More questions you CAN NOT ASK )
Check out more real life situations of internship interview questions in different financial institutions. Make a point of trying to prepare an answer for some of the questions you see below. Practice makes perfect.