Job applicant looks nervous in his interview, playing with a ballpen in his hands. He wears a brown shirt and glasses. He has a gentle mustache.

You have successfully passed the initial screening interview, and they have invited you for the second interview. Great! But how does it differ from the first interview, and what questions should you expect? We will try to find the answer in this article.

Note: In many cases, second interview will be also the final interview. At the end of it, they will decide who gets the job. If you apply for a management role, however, or a highly technical position, second interview can be just another step in the interview process, and you will still have to pass the final interview, and the personality test.

In the article we will focus on the most common questions in a second interview, and that are the behavioral questions, and the technical questions.


Behavioral interviewing

Once you passed the screening interview, we already know that you meet all basic job requirements. In the second interview with you we try to understand how you would act in various work related situations, how would you handle them. Your answers to behavioral questions will help us to understand it. You can expect to get some of the following questions in your second interview:

  • Describe a situation when you were under pressure in work.
  • Describe a conflict you had with your colleague.
  • Describe a situation when you went above and beyond with your service (for the customer, for the colleague)
  • Describe a situation when you reached a goal and tell us how you achieved it.
  • Describe a time when you had to deal with an angry or upset client (customer).
  • Describe a situation when you did not agree with the opinion (or decision) of your superior or supervisor, and knew that they were wrong. How did you handle that?
  • Describe a time when you struggled with motivation in job (it was repetitive, you did not enjoy your duties, there was no work to do, etc). How did you overcome the crisis?
  • Describe a time when you struggled to communicate something to your boss, colleague, or to a customer. How did you manage to get your message over?
  • Describe a difficult decision you had to make in your professional career. How did making this decision affect you?
  • Describe the biggest failure of your professional career.
  • Describe a time when you struggled to build a relationship with someone important. How did you eventually overcome that?
  • Describe a situation when you were unable to meet your goals in work.
  • Describe your latest project (task). Which problems did you face when trying to realize it?
  • Describe a time when you have effectively resolved another person’s request. What was the situation and what kinds of information did you gather to help assist in resolving their request?
  • Give me an example of a time when you had to explain something fairly complex to a frustrated client. How did you handle this delicate situation?


Duo of hiring managers talks to a job applicant. The second interview takes places in a school environment.Technical questions

Your answers to behavioral questions tell us a lot about you: how you approach your work, your colleagues, how you would act in various work related situations. But they do not tell us much about your readiness for a particular job, especially for a technical aspects (whether you can cook (if you apply for a job in a restaurant) whether you can design websites (if you apply for a web designer position), whether you can actually manage people, design a marketing campaign, etc.)

Only your answers to technical questions (both theoretical and practical) will tell us something more about your readiness for the job. But since they are job specific, we can not elaborate more on them in this particular article.


Answers to behavioral and technical questions

If you would like to see great answers to all common behavioral interview questions, have a look at our Interview Success Package. And to learn more about the technical questions and answers for the particular job you try to get, please head to questions by job title section, and locate your job title in the list of the latest articles.