Good Stories for an Interview

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The key to a successful job interview often lies in knowing how to tell memorable stories that paint you in a positive light. Not every question requires you to break into an anecdote, but because the brain tends to remember a good story better than a bare fact, you may want to prepare some tales that highlight your biggest accomplishments or your most important skills. When telling stories in an interview, make sure they have a beginning, middle, and end that you can convey within a minute or less. Try to think of stories that fit the following archetypes:

Slaying the dragon

A good dragon-slaying story highlights a time you took on a tough problem for an employer and solved it. In the beginning, explain the problem. For the middle, describe what you did to solve it. At the end, highlight ways the action you took helped your employer.

Doing work you were proud of even when under pressure

You may want to prepare a few of these stories so that you have a better chance of fitting one of them into the interview. Telling a story about work you were proud of has a great impact because it offers a genuine look at the best you can do. When crafting these stories, make sure they demonstrate your expertise and skills.

Thinking on your feet

A story about quick or unorthodox thinking can take a variety of shapes. It might be a time you changed a plan partway through implementing it. It might be about learning from a mistake or making a snap reaction in a critical situation. It might even be a story about forging ahead by yourself on a project, without the help of explicit direction.

Addressing conflict or setbacks

At some point, your interviewer is likely to ask about a time you dealt with adversity.
To answer that question adequately, you will need to have a story prepared that shows how you created a positive outcome out of a negative situation.

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