Every question at your job interview matters. When you are asked, “What is your greatest weakness?” your answer is very obviously not “I refuse to answer that question and I assume you don’t care.” You have to answer the question, and you have to take that question seriously, just as you do every interview question.
Rapport questions are no different. When the interviewer asks you rapport questions, you need to make sure you answer them correctly, even when the question itself sound stupid or harmless.
What Are Rapport Questions
Hiring managers know that applicants are anxious, and they know that that anxiety can lead to answers that do not actually represent the abilities of the candidate. That’s a problem, since job interviews are designed to help the employer find the best candidate. So interviewers ask rapport questions, like:
– How about this weather?
– Have you seen any good movies lately?
– Did you find this place okay?
Each of these questions is designed to be completely harmless. In fact, the interviewer is probably only asking them to make you feel comfortable, and may not even realize that they are a part of the interview. Yet you need to make sure you answer all rapport questions correctly, because your interview is going to be affected by how you answer these questions.
How to Answer Rapport Questions
These questions are only designed to help you relax and feel comfortable in the interview, but you need to remember that the exact same rules apply to rapport questions as all types of interview questions. These rules include:
– Always give a positive, happy answer.
– Give a confident, intelligent answer.
– Don’t be afraid to engage the interviewer.
These rules apply to all interview questions, and remain applicable to rapport questions. Here is an example of how to put that into action.
Q: “What do you think about all this rain?”
Bad Answer: “I don’t like all this rain. Hopefully it is sunny again soon.”
Good Answer: “I love the rain. Something about the air when it rains is invigorating. Do you enjoy it?”
The bad answer is complaining. It is not positive, confident, or engaging. If you give that answer, you are starting your interview off negatively. Even if you hate the rain, you need to pretend that you love it, because you need everything about your interview to be positive and confident. Your answer to this fairly harmless interview question must follow the same rules as every other question.
Using the Interview Question Rules
Although rapport questions are not meant to be part of the interview, how you answer them affects the tone of the rest of your interview. Whether the question is about movies, music, weather, driving – it doesn’t matter what the question is about, make sure you give a confident, positive, engaging answer.