JOB INTERVIEW TIPS-What Are Your Hobbies?
Posted 29th September 2020 • Written by People First • • • • • • •
Job Interview Tips
“What Are Your Hobbies?”
Adapted from an article on themuse.com by Regina Borsellino
You’re in a job interview.
You’ve easily dealt with their question about the gap on your CV.
You impressed them with your answer to “Why do you Want to Work for Us?”
You’re getting to the end of the interview and feeling good.
Then they throw you another one “What are your hobbies?”
Or is it?
All the other questions have been about the company, your career, your education, and you know how to answer them.
But now you have one that is just about you. So, what’s the right answer?
It’s not a trick question. The interviewers do genuinely want to know more about YOU.
They are not only interested in if you can do the job, but also in if you are the kind of person who will fit into the team, the kind of person they want to see every day.
The good thing for you is that they give you the chance to give a really good idea about you and your personality rather than just you as a CV.
But just because it’s not about the job, doesn’t mean you can kick off your shoes, sit back and relax. What you say about what you do to relax, still matters. So, prepare beforehand.
You don’t want to be asked the question and find your mind goes blank…
How To Choose a Hobby to Talk About?
If you have hobbies that are linked to the job then mention them.
For example, painting or poetry for a creative environment, designing apps at home for an IT job or playing in a team for a job that needs teamwork or is competitive.
You might also think beyond job skills when selecting a hobby and instead choose one that shows how you would add to the company’s work environment. While you’re researching a company before interviews, you’ll see that some companies or teams will publicize the more social aspects of working there on their website or social media. So take note of any group activities you come across that align with the hobbies you already have. For example, if they highlight their karaoke nights and you love to sing, mentioning that might help interviewers picture you as part of the team.
What you say can show what motivates you in other, more work related, ways, too.
If you volunteer at an animal shelter it shows your caring side. If you run marathons it shows your discipline and the satisfaction you get from achieving the goals you’ve laid out for yourself.
What Not to Say
Don’t exaggerate your hobbies. If you’ve parachuted once, or water skied once, or climbed a mountain once, don’t pretend you’re an expert parachutist, water skier or mountain climber.
There are some obvious answers you should avoid.
Anything that suggests you might not be reliable, for example, that you love to party, or similar, might make them worry you’ll turn up late or tired.
And don’t say you have no hobbies. They want to learn more about you. Saying you do nothing gives a bad impression.
But what if you have no ‘hobbies’?
Don’t invent hobbies to sound cool and don’t obsess about finding a hobby that fits the job.
It doesn’t have to be a traditional ‘hobby’, like stamp-collecting, sport, etc., it could just be something you really enjoy doing.
It could be cooking, learning languages, or a subject that you’re really, really interested in, like politics, or fashion or history.
Even if all you like doing is watching TV or reading, tell them what kind of programmes/films/books you like and why, tell them what it is that interests you about those subjects.
“What are your hobbies?”, “What do you do at the weekend?” “What do you do for fun?” are great ways for you to show who you are off the page of your CV and outside work.
Don’t be afraid of this kind of personal interview question, show enthusiasm and be yourself!
You might find that they have the same hobbies too!