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Job Interviews are always tensioned-filled and tricky since you don’t even know what to expect. But it becomes despairing when the interviewer starts asking questions unrelated to your professional ability. To know how to respond to irrelevant interview questions, you must first know the likely questions which interviewers aren’t expected to ask.

Below are questions you mustn’t answer in a job interview

1.   Are you married or planning to marry soon?
These questions detect a trace of prying into one’s personal life and it is sometimes put up by employers to know if as a married man you will stay for period of time or in the case of single man, you will put all your energy in the job since there is no external (family) distraction.
What to respond: Your marital status shouldn’t be your employer’s business considering that you have made up your mind to do the job. Except in specific cases, where the vacancy is made for a particular status, you can respond “my career is my priority now”.

2.   Do you have kids?
Women are mostly victims of such questions and as such are likely to face discrimination. But it is improper for an employer to ask about your family during an interview.
What to respond:  You might say that your kids can’t interfere with your job. Or you can deflect this question by quoting the adage “There is time for everything”.

3.   Enquiries about your child care arrangements:
 In the case where you might have mentioned you are married or you have kids (especially the young working mothers), questions like these arise. The employer would want to know if your child care arrangement is stable. No employer would entertain work excuse or you reporting late because of an unreliable nanny or babysitter.
What to respond: You are not mandated to explain your child care arrangements to your interviewer. But if you indeed want the job you are applying for, you could answer the question sincerely by practically looking at the fact that the interviewer wouldn’t like a possible work conflicts.

4.   Do you speak English?
Questions like these could raise ruffles, since English is regarded as Lingua Franca. But interviewers might ask in order to seek information.
What to respond: Highlight your communication skills both oral and written without discussing the position of your English language whether it is a native or adopted language.

5.   Which holidays do you or don’t celebrate:
A question like this could be put up by an interviewer to know your religious practice.
What to respond: You are not persuaded to disclose your faith if you are not at ease doing so. Just respond “I strive to never allow a clash between my work schedule and my holidays.” This could address any thoughts relating to your availability without revealing much fact about your religious practice.

6.   Which Church do you attend?
Some employers, mostly the highly religious ones would like to know the church attended by the job seeker. For instance, The Sabbatarians don’t work on Saturdays, because the attend church that day.
What to respond: You might politely say you don’t discuss religion at work, since an interviewee can’t be denied of a job based on religion or faith difference.

7.   How often do you take a sick excuse?
Questions relating to your health status are forbidden in a job interview. But, questions relating to your strength or ability to perform specific tasks might be expected.
What to respond: You are not mandated to discuss your health issues in the interview, since sickness is an impromptu event or state. No one knows when the sickness might be contracted. You could say “I hardly give a sick excuse and am only absent from work when it can’t be avoided”.

8.   Are you planning on retiring soon?
 In some organizations, they give their age limit for employment opportunities. So, when the interviewee is old, the employer might want to know your plans on your duration of work service. This is because; they would like to know if a vacant post for replacement would be published soon.
What to respond: You are not obliged to discuss your retiring plans during an interview. This applies even though you are leaving the job in a couple of years. Instead, say “You love and want the job you are applying for since you would try to accomplish the company’s set goals and you are not planning on retiring soon”.

9.   I can’t believe that the change most anticipated is forlorn. Can you?
The 2015 presidential election, campaign and result brought up a promise of change which hasn’t been effected till date. This is sometimes the words of employers when screening applicants. But, some employers take care to avoid political issues on the course of an interview. Though, political issues might be expected especially, when a federal job is applied. But employers are likely not to act differently against you based on your political interests or inclination.
What to respond: If you are interviewing for a job at a political related organization, you response might matter which should be a neutral one. You could say,   “I try not to allow the country’s economy/situation interfere with my Job output”. Or you could give a polite nod or smile in agreement. This is to ensure you are both on even ground.

Finally, there is no perfect way; a job seeker could manage an unfitting job interview question. Occasionally, the perfect choice is to be wary in your answers. Declining politely to reply is an alternative but it could affect your chances of getting that job. A frank reply is another option but it could have diverse effect. This means that your answer might set you up for possible rejection. Try your best to avoid relating information an interviewer might use against you while striving to provide the information the interviewer is trying to know.

Goodluck and success on your job interview.
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« Last Edit: May 17, 2017, 07:03 PM by Sommy123 »