Bank Interview Preparation
Tips for the bank Interviews
- Before you read the questions, keep these tips in mind:
- Dress conservatively. Though you don’t have to be completely buttoned up, it’s important that you match the professional look you would expect from a potential boss.
- Arrive early, but not too early. Chances are good you are one of several interviews that day or, since you are going to a bank, the person you are speaking to will be fitting you in between talking to customers. Show up five to ten minutes before your scheduled time.
- Pay attention to posture.
- Smile. Banks are, ultimately, people-based organizations. If you smile during the pressure of your interview, you’re more likely to do so when talking with a customer.
Interview QuestionsQ: What made you apply for this position at our bank?
When an interviewer asks this, it’s an attempt to see what you know about the company. Did you do any research before you came in? Are you aware of their track record in the mortgage industry? Have you noticed complaints about their account policies? This is a chance for you to demonstrate your interest goes beyond simply obtaining a position – you might even be thinking of ways to help them grow.
Sample Answer- “I have an interest in the housing industry and know that your organization has a good reputation among lenders for providing fair terms and first-rate service.”
Q: What about the job, in particular, drew your attention?
Though it might be difficult to remember what exactly caused you to send your résumé in, most interviewers will want to know why you are interested. Of course, the basic reason is that you want a job, but you are being tested to see if you were actually paying attention beyond that – your answer is a good clue about your future intentions with the company. Spend some time looking over the job description and pick out one or two key points to talk about.
Sample Answer- “I’ve been in the financial part of the construction industry for a while and am looking for a new challenge. Seeing this position had more personal contact with customers got me thinking it might be a good fit.”
Q: Have you ever been responsible for giving change?
If you are going to be in a place that secures large sums of money, you will have to be trusted to count correctly – once you pass the background check, of course. Bankers choose to open the discussion in this indirect manner to gauge your history and openness. Be up front about your past work or it will come back to bite you at a key time.
Sample Answer- “I have spent most of my working life in electronics stores. As an associate and then store manager, making sure the drawers match what the computer says should be there is a primary concern.”
Q: What’s your idea of good customer service?
No matter what kind of business you are in, taking care of those individuals the company serves is crucial. On the surface, this is about the connection between clients and associates, but it is also a clue into how you handle personal relationships overall. When you answer, keep in mind it should highlight the way you would treat coworkers, too.
Sample Answer- “The most important thing is to respect the other person. Making sure their concerns are heard and addressed, as well as eventually making them happy, all comes from that starting point.”
Q: What are three things you would like this company to do for you? How do you expect to return the favor for the company?
When asked, these questions are one of the few times you get to really express your ideals – grab hold of it with both hands and set yourself apart! You might feel like it’s tough to narrow down your list to three, but do your best to respond completely in as short a time as possible. (There may be follow-up questions based on what you say.)
Sample Answer- “In my previous experience, I’ve put a lot of effort into creating environments that help others develop as people and professionals. I think it’s crucial that everyone from the CEO to a clerk at the front desk feel like they are key to operations. “As far as the company itself, I would hope they are receptive to new ideas and are willing to keep communication flowing frequently. I want to be able to know where I stand, what I’m doing well and how I can improve when I’m not. If there are opportunities to grow within the organization through leadership training, I would really like to be a part of them.”
Q: Could you please give me three words that will tell me something about you?
This question is a bit deeper than the last, as it allows the interviewer to get a clear picture of how you view yourself. Be confident and honest in describing your best qualities – it’s always better to tell the truth on the front end instead of making yourself out to be something better than you are.
Sample Answer- “I really value loyalty and communication – I expect people to tell me when I’m coming up short and be supportive of my efforts to change, something I strive to do myself. I also do my very best to be extremely punctual – even being a minute late to an appointment makes me feel like I’ve let someone down.”
Q: Could you tell me where you would like to be in five years?
Though you are just hoping to have a first day at this point, employers want to see what sort of goals you have. You will want to be fairly general, but it doesn’t hurt to set up a couple of targets for yourself as a professional. This is an opportunity to share what you value in a working environment as a person and what you are aiming to get out of that job before you have it.
Sample Answer - “I want to have grown into a position that continues to push me to be the best I can. If there are mentoring programs that help young associates learn how the company works with an eye towards management, I hope to be a part of them and – in the long term – helping others achieve their goals, too.”