More Interview Questions and Answers
What newspaper do you take?
Alternative and related questions:
What newspaper do you take and why?
Do you know what the current news headline is?
The meaning behind the question:
This question is closely linked to the next question we'll be covering, "Are you interested in current affairs?" and could be asked either before or after that question. In asking what newspaper you take, the interviewer will certainly be aiming to establish if you are interested in current affairs but they'll also be discretely probing your values. What newspaper someone reads can often say a lot about them.
This can be a surprisingly difficult question to answer. Common wisdom has it that the newspaper someone reads says a lot about their political, intellectual and even class values. What images spring to your mind when you think of readers of the following newspapers: The Guardian, The Sun, The Independent, The Telegraph. They each conjure up a very different kind of person, don't they. The question you have to ask yourself is what kind of a person you need to be!
You're certainly within your rights to simply tell the truth and you're also within your rights to tell the interviewer what you think they might want to hear (although guessing what that is can often be tricky!) In all cases, though, you'll need to be prepared for them to ask you why you choose that particular paper. But I'd suggest avoiding the tabloids; it makes for an easier answer.
By the way, just in case you were wondering, telling the interviewer that you don't read any newspapers isn't going to reflect well on you. Conversely, reading more than one newspaper is of course perfectly acceptable.
I read The Independent. I recognize that all newspapers, The Independent included, inevitably have various editorial biases but I feel The Independent gives a particularly well-balanced view of the world and what's happening in the world without having too much political bias. I also check the BBC News website each day. Between them, I believe I'm getting a reasonably well-rounded insight into current affairs.
Word of warning:
The obvious follow-up to this question is for the interviewer to ask about an issue or, if you're unlucky, a specific article that has recently taken your interest. Just make sure you're ready for that!
The Interview Question & Answer Book
More interview questions and answers
Talking about your current employment
- Can you tell me what you enjoy about your current job?
- What will you remember most about your last job?
- Is this the first time you have made an effort to move away from your current employers?
- How do you feel about the possibility of leaving your current job?
- How would you describe your current employer?
Talking about this vacancy
- Wouldn’t you be better suited to working in a larger/smaller organization?
- How do you feel this vacancy differs from your current role?
- What reservations do you have about your ability to undertake this job?
- Can you describe your ideal working environment to me?
- How do you feel we compare to our competitors?
- What would you say is our Unique Selling Point?
- What would be your analysis of the current trends in our industry/sector?
Understanding your career path, plans and ambitions
- What aspects of your career path would you like to have been different?
- What are your greatest regrets about the path your career has taken?
- What has been the greatest challenge you have faced in your career to date?
- What do you think are your main career options for the next five years?
- What exactly does the word ‘success’ mean to you?
Addressing problems in your career history
- Why did you only stay with this organization for such a short time?
- Why did you stay with this organization for such a long time?
Coping with stress and pressure
- Are you able to multitask?
- Can you juggle a number of different projects simultaneously?
- How do you handle rejection/disappointment/failure?
- How do you deal with interpersonal conflict?
- What does tact and diplomacy mean to you?
- What makes for a successful team?
Management and leadership
- Would you describe yourself as a good manager?
- Do you really think you’re management material?
- What is your attitude to delegation?
- Can you give me an example of a time when you had to lead from the front?
- Have you ever had to fire or lay off a member of your staff?
- How would you describe your ideal team member?
Personal and professional development
- In what ways do you intend to improve upon your performance?
- How has your current job prepared you for greater challenges/responsibility?
Interests and activities
- What book are you reading at the moment?
- What newspaper do you take?
- Are you interested in current affairs?
The amateur psychiatrist
- If you won the lottery what would you do?
- Can you tell me about the best teacher you ever had?
- If you could meet any historical figure, who would it be and why?
- What are you most afraid of?
Money, money, money
- Why aren’t you earning more?
- How much do you think you are really worth?
- How much does money matter to you?
- Would you still be interested in this job if you current employer offered a pay rise?
- Have you ever had to take a pay cut to keep your job?
- Have you ever asked for but been refused a pay rise?
Author: James Innes