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Classic Interview Questions and Answers

Are you creative?

Alternative and related questions:

In what ways would you say you are creative?
Are you innovative/inventive?

The meaning behind the question:

There’s no hidden meaning here. It’s a very direct question; every walk of life requires at least some degree of creativity – and creativity is often seen as an indicator of intelligence. My core question, “Are you creative?” is clearly a closed question but answering it with a straight, “Yes” isn’t going to get you anywhere. Regardless of precisely how the interviewer phrases their question you need to aim to tell them precisely in what ways you are creative, how this applies to your line of work – and to back this up with at least one example.

Your answer:

Some lines of work are clearly more creative than others and the way you phrase your answer will naturally depend on exactly what it is that you do for a living. If you work in a creative field then clearly you will need to give a much more comprehensive answer. But even if you work in a field that isn’t generally seen as particularly demanding in terms of creativity you should be able to come up with an example of where you have displayed lateral or ‘out-of-the-box’ thinking or invented a new and better way of handling something.


Yes, I believe I’m a creative individual. I’m certainly able to think laterally and to be inventive in terms of finding solutions to problems. Quantity surveying isn’t generally seen as a particularly creative profession but I have nevertheless used my creative abilities on numerous occasions, for example converting old manual systems of reporting to highly automated – and much more accurate – spreadsheet based systems. This saved myself and my team a considerable amount of time in the long-term as well as meaning we were less exposed to the professional embarrassment of errors in our calculations.

The Interview Question & Answer Book

The Interview Question and Answer Book

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More classic interview questions and answers


How would you describe yourself? / How would your boss/colleagues/team/family/friends describe you?

In what ways are you a team player?

Do you work well on your own initiative?

What techniques do you use to get things done?

What motivates you?

Are you proactive?

Are you creative?

Are you a risk-taker?

How do you handle pressure and stress?

Can you tell me about a time when you have failed to achieve a goal?

What's the worst mistake you've made at work and how did you deal with it?

How would you handle the following situation?

Can you tell me about a major project you have successfully completed?

Can you tell me about a major problem at work that you've had to deal with?

We have a problem with x. How would you resolve that?

What do you do when you disagree with your line manager?

How would you describe yourself as a manager?

Can you give me an example of when you have successfully coached a member of your team?

What is your customer service philosophy?

How did you get your last job?

What does your current job involve on a day-to-day basis?

What contribution do you make to the department in which you work?

What changes have you made to your current job role since you started?

What have you learned in your last job?

Can you tell me about your last appraisal?

How would you describe your current boss?

Why did you leave that job?

Which of your jobs was the best?

Why is there a gap in your resume/CV?

What do you know about us as an organization?

What do you know about our products/services?

What do you think are our organization's greatest strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats?

What do you know about the vacancy for which you are applying?

How do your skills and experience match the job description/person specification?

What appeals to you most about this vacancy?

Why have you chosen this line of work?

Are there any other organizations to which you are applying?

How does this job compare to others for which you are applying?

Can you describe your ideal employer to me?

What sort of person would you most like to work for?

In what ways is your degree relevant to the work you are now doing?

What have you learned and how have you developed over the last year/five years?

What sports are you/have you been involved in?

Do you know what the current headline news is?

How quickly can you adapt to a new work environment?

Would it be a problem if we asked you to work overtime/evenings/weekends?

What is your current salary package?

What salary package are you expecting for this role?

When would you be available to start?

Do you mind if we contact your current employer for a reference?