More Interview Questions and Answers
If you won the lottery what would you do?
Alternative and related questions:
If you won the lottery, would you stop working?
The meaning behind the question:
This question isn't just one of silly speculation. What it'll tell the interviewer is what your priorities are outside of your work – and just how much of a priority your work is. That can be very revealing indeed.
I once saw a cartoon which asked the alternative question, "If you won the lottery, would you stop working?" and the reply was, "I stopped working years ago. But I might start gloating if it isn't too hard!"
Many of us think that if we won the lottery we'd end up on a beach somewhere, drinking cocktails and being waited on hand and foot. I have to say, it does sound rather nice, doesn't it? But how long could you really keep that up for before you got well and truly bored?!
There are many ways to answer this question but your focus must be on showing that you'd intend to make constructive use of your time – and don't by any means feel obliged to say that you'd stop working, at least not completely.
That's a very interesting question. I assume you're meaning a sufficiently large sum of money that I'd be financially independent for life? Initially, I think I'd take a bit of a career break and perhaps go travelling for a while, not least to give myself some thinking time and time to adjust to my new circumstances. After that, I think I would certainly continue working to a degree but I'd probably aim to work on a not-for-profit basis, for example volunteer work for a charity. And I'd certainly aim for a better work-life balance. I have many hobbies such as playing the piano which I would appreciate having more time to be able to indulge. I'm also very keen to learn Spanish. I think I'd certainly find many ways to occupy my time productively.
Word of warning:
Don't venture into the territory of, for example, telling the interviewer just what model of Aston Martin you'd be intending to buy yourself or how you'd quite like a butler to serve your gin and tonic every evening. Restrict your thoughts to ones which show you as someone who needs to continually develop and grow and isn't content to just sit back and rest on their laurels.
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