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Communication Interview Questions: 10 Common Questions with Sample Answers

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During job interviews, employers want to know if you can get along with others.

So, they devised a list of communication interview questions to gauge your ability to communicate verbally and non-verbally.

These questions really hone in on what it takes to be a Communications Manager or a similar position in this industry.

Because practice is an invaluable part of the interviewing process, we’ve rounded up 10 common questions with sample answers and explanations.

Let’s get started.

10 Common Communication Interview Questions

Communication skills are an integral part of any field, even more so with the advent of high-tech wizardry that’s taken over the majority of workplaces around the globe.

Here’s a quick list of 10 common communication interview questions you could be facing.

Take a look.

  1. Talk about your Greatest Accomplishment.
  2. What Efforts Do You Plan on Putting in to Ensure You Excel in the Role?
  3. How Would You Describe Yourself?
  4. What Skills Do You Have that Have Prepared You to Work in Communication?
  5. How Can You Work Effectively within a Budget?
  6. Describe a Time When You Shared an Idea that Your Colleagues Didn’t Support.
  7. What’s Your Preferred Method of Communication?
  8. Talk about a Time of Conflict and How You Resolved It.
  9. How Do You Stay Organized?
  10. Why Should We Choose You for this Position?

Here are a couple of extra follow-up interview questions you could check out:

For example, some employers will ask culture interview questions to measure your ability to adapt to new ways of thinking and implementing ideas.

You can also expect a couple of collaboration interview questions to assess your soft skills like problem-solving and task management.

What Should I Say in a Communication Interview?

Knowing what to expect can go a long way in helping you craft thoughtful, meaningful, and sincere answers.

It also helps to talk about your expertise in the field and your years of experience. You can mention that you’re motivated, organized, and energetic.

Finally, don’t forget to bring up what your goal is for this position.

Say something about how you plan on becoming an expert in this particular field, while racking up various skill sets along the way.

This way, you can be confident in your responses, especially when you start feeling the pressure of having all eyes on you.

What Skills Are Communication Interviewers Looking For in a Candidate?

Interviewers are looking for a candidate’s ability to communicate well in various settings.

This is especially important for positions that function as part of a team.

Knowing how to use different communication styles ensures that the work is productive and maintains a healthy flow between all members of the organization.

  • Verbal communication skills: using spoken language to get your message across
  • Nonverbal communication skills: using body language, vocalics, and facial expressions to communicate
  • Listening skills: avoid distractions and pay attention to the interviewer’s pitch, tone, and body language
  • Confidence: people respond to people who exude self-confidence by making eye contact, preparing ahead of time, and forming coherent, intelligent responses
  • Friendliness: helps foster understanding, maintain a positive attitude, and build trust in the workplace

What Traits Are Communication Interviewers Looking to Avoid in a Candidate?

Interviewers also have a handful of features they want to avoid in a potential employer, including:

  • Lack of preparation: without the right type of interview prep, you won’t have a full understanding of the industry or the role you’re applying for
  • Poor body language: slouching and not maintaining eye contact are a couple of examples of poor nonverbal communication that can make you come across as untrustworthy or insincere.
  • Speaking negatively about previous employers: it speaks volumes about who you are as an individual when you speak badly about your previous job.

Sample Communication Interview Questions and Answers

Preparation is key for all types of interview questions, especially those that revolve around such an all-encompassing field as communication.

Use these 10 questions interviewers ask and their sample answers to help tailor your individualized responses.

This way, you’ll exude confidence and professionalism that will be hard to turn down.

1. Talk about your Greatest Accomplishment.

This question gives you the opportunity to talk about what your achievements mean to you.

Why Is This Question Asked?

Everyone has their own version of what success looks like.

That’s why interviewers are interested in how you define success and achievements in your professional and personal life.

What to Focus On When Answering This Question

Your answer to this question should focus on a major professional accomplishment.

You can also bring in an example from your personal life, but it’s better if you keep it related to the communications field.

What to Avoid When Answering This Question

People don’t like listening to embellished stories.

Just be as brief and to the point as you can, while still pointing out all the significant details.

Example Answer

“My greatest accomplishment is raising beautiful kids. I also volunteer at a non-profit to raise funds for underprivileged families and I recently organized a charity event where we were lucky to receive a substantial number of donations.”

2. What Efforts Do You Plan on Putting in to Ensure You Excel in the Role?

Having an appreciation for continued learning and expanding your skillset is something employers look for during interviews.

Why Is This Question Asked?

Your interviewer is interested in finding out if you’re motivated enough to keep your knowledge up-to-date.

What to Focus On When Answering This Question

Having that commitment to keep earning and advancing requires you to take an active role.

Focus on providing examples of how you plan on pursuing this ongoing process.

What to Avoid When Answering This Question

Avoid coming across as over-confident or trying to oversell your abilities.

You’ll end up giving them the impression that you’re cocky and arrogant.

Example Answer

“I plan to continue learning and improving my knowledge base throughout my career by reading articles that focus on the industry. I also plan on attending communications seminars and workshops.”

3. How Would You Describe Yourself?

This question gives candidates the chance to talk about themselves, illustrate their best skills, and show off their ability to communicate.

Why Is This Question Asked?

Interviewers use this question to get an idea of your level of confidence and how much you value your contributions to the company.

What to Focus On When Answering This Question

Talk about the things you like about yourself.

At the same time, it’s a good idea to mention one or two things you’d like to change about yourself so you come across as sincere and confident.

What to Avoid When Answering This Question

Avoid getting into too many details.

Try to keep your answer truthful, yet brief and light-hearted.

Example Answer

“I’d describe myself as a team player committed to adding value to my place of work. I rely on my communication and listening skills to relay my ideas as well as make sure that my colleagues are heard.”

4. Name Some Skills that Have Prepared You for Work in Communications?

Communication is a massive part of almost all industries.

It pays to have some handy tools in your arsenal to make sure you’re capable of doing the job.

Why Is This Question Asked?

Interviewers are keen to know whether you understand which skills are needed for this role and how you plan on utilizing them to their full potential.

What to Focus On When Answering This Question

Focus on including a wide range of your skills, including both hard and soft skills.

You need both working side-by-side to make it in any industry, particularly one as wide-reaching as communications.

What to Avoid When Answering This Question

Avoid straying off-topic.

Make sure you familiarize yourself with your skill set beforehand so your answer doesn’t sound ambiguous.

Example Answer

“My work experience has taught me how to be a good listener, which helps me understand the situation and give a suitable response.

I’m also highly organized, efficient, and punctual.”

5. Can You Work Effectively within a Budget?

While this question isn’t directly related to communications, it’s still critical that you understand the importance of budgeting in any field.

Why Is This Question Asked?

Employers are looking for someone who can deliver high-quality content even when dealing with financial constraints.

What to Focus On When Answering This Question

When answering this question, focus on your understanding of the importance of budget.

You can also mention one or two examples of when you were able to produce impressive results despite having a limited budget.

What to Avoid When Answering This Question

If you don’t have experience managing costs, don’t feel like you need to make up a story.

Simply talk about a few budgeting skills you’ve learned and that you’re eager to put them to good use.

Example Answer

“In my previous job, the company had allocated limited funds for training new recruits. I was put in charge of a team responsible for coming up with creative ways to train and mentor new employees with almost no budget.”

6. Describe a Time When You Shared an Idea that Your Colleagues Didn’t Support.

This is similar to the ‘How well do you work with others?’ question.

Both help shed light on your ability to show leadership and stand up for what you believe in.

Why Is This Question Asked?

Interviewers want candidates who can communicate effectively and get along with others even when they have opposing points of view.

What to Focus On When Answering This Question

Even if the story doesn’t have the happy ending you would have liked, it’s important for your answer to be as positive as possible.

What to Avoid When Answering This Question

Don’t talk badly about your colleagues.

Even if they’re at fault, bad-mouthing them will make you look unprofessional and petty.

Example Answer

“A colleague and I disagreed about which task we should tackle first. While he made valid points, I felt that my suggestion would help produce better results for the entire project. So, I explained my reasoning and he ultimately agreed with me.”

7. What’s Your Preferred Method of Communication?

Because communication spans such a wide network of industries and fields, it’s important to have a good understanding of all the different methods and be able to apply them equally well.

Why Is This Question Asked?

This question helps interviewers gauge your ability to relay messages both verbally and non-verbally.

What to Focus On When Answering This Question

One of the best ways to answer this question is to base your responses on the core requirements of the job.

What to Avoid When Answering This Question

This is one of those times when you should avoid giving a specific answer.

It’s okay to give a general answer, just be ready to back it up with some examples from your previous experiences.

Example Answer

“I find that talking to people over the phone or in person conveys my message and the one that I want to use more effectively than texting or sending a follow-up email after the interview.

It also helps me get a faster response, which is more productive.”

8. Talk about a Time of Conflict and How You Resolved It.

We’ve all been in situations where conflicts arise.

Sometimes we can sense their arrival, whereas other times, they seem to come out of nowhere.

Why Is This Question Asked?

Interviewers use this question to verify whether you can keep your head cool under pressure.

What to Focus On When Answering This Question

With this question, your most effective strategy is the STAR method.

This way, you can put more emphasis on the resolution rather than the conflict.

What to Avoid When Answering This Question

Avoid giving a long, winding answer that doesn’t match the question.

Just keep it short and sweet.

Example Answer

“The key to effectively managing conflict is to listen to all involved and show empathy. Understanding the other person’s point of view can help diffuse the situation. That’s when it becomes easier to find common ground.”

9. How Do You Stay Organized?

Communications roles can be demanding because they’re relied on to oversee multiple projects at once.

Why Is This Question Asked?

Having good organizational skills tells your interviewer that you’re capable of juggling several tasks at once.

What to Focus On When Answering This Question

Provide examples of your organizational skills.

Make sure to highlight times when things were busy and hectic, but you managed to present quality work because you remained focused and efficient.

What to Avoid When Answering This Question

Never say you’re unorganized.

Even if you’re not the most organized person, say that you’re always coming up with ways to be more organized and methodical.

Example Answer

“I love laying out my tasks for the day, week, and month so I know exactly what needs to be done and in what order. I also prefer dividing up my work into categories, which allows me to use my time wisely.”

10. Why Should We Choose You for this Role?

While there’s no right or wrong answer to this question, it can be pretty tricky to answer.

Why Is This Question Asked?

Open-ended questions like this one provide the interviewer with insight into how well you can sell yourself.

They’re also looking for any special skills you may have that could prove to be a valuable asset to the company.

What to Focus On When Answering This Question

This is the perfect opportunity to highlight your skills, experience, and past successes to set you apart from the pack.

Also, make sure you tie them in with company goals and core role requirements.

What to Avoid When Answering This Question

Avoid being too boastful or pompous. Also, try not to stray too far from the question.

Example Answer

“Based on my prior work experience, I’m confident I can hit the ground running and provide the necessary results.

Using my knowledge and skill set, I know I can increase the company’s productivity while creating “a sense of camaraderie and team spirit between colleagues.”

Other Common Interview Questions You Could Be Asked

As you may have noticed from the 10 questions above, employers’ have one aim: to explore your communication skills.

At the same time, they also want to note your ability to communicate during the interview both verbally and nonverbally.

To help them get a better reading of your skills, they may pull out some of these other interview questions out of their arsenal.

Where Do You See Yourself in Five Years?

This is one of those age-old questions that interviewers will never get tired of asking.

Why Is This Question Asked?

The obvious reason is to see if you’re planning to stick around.

No one wants to hire someone and waste time and money training them only to have them bail after a few months.

What to Focus On When Answering This Question

Be as truthful as possible without getting too specific.

If you don’t have an answer, simply focus on the skills you want to work on and improve.

What to Avoid When Answering This Question

Never lie in an interview or attempt to give a phony, made-up answer.

No matter how hard you try to come across as genuine, your interviewer will feel that you’re not being truthful.

Example Answer

“I see myself as continuing to develop my skills and knowledge to take on more responsibility. During that time, I’ll have become an important part of the company who has helped contribute to its success and development.

What Do You Like to Do for Fun?

A fun, laid-back question, it helps the interviewer get to know you better on a more personal level.

Why Is This Question Asked?

This is one of those unique questions that give employers some insight into your general attitude and lifestyle.

Plus, it could help measure how dedicated you are as an individual depending on the type of interests and hobbies you have outside of work.

What to Focus On When Answering This Question

Talk about one or two interests that are the closest to your heart.

You can also mention some hobbies that have helped improve your focus and attention span, which are vital for any job.

What to Avoid When Answering This Question

Don’t compare your hobby to your full-time job. One helps you relax, master certain skills, and kill time.

The other, however, is your livelihood.

It’s where the majority of your duties and responsibilities lie, and where employers are dependent on you to boost company growth.

Example Answer

“Chess, sudoku, and crossword puzzles are my passion. I also like to spend time outdoors, hiking, cycling, or just enjoying a picnic with friends.”

Tell Me About a Time You Failed

You may be tempted to hide the bad experiences, but it’s helped shape the person you’ve become today.

Why Is This Question Asked?

Employers like asking this question because it makes everyone slightly uncomfortable, and they want to see how you’ll react when you’re not at ease.

They’re also interested in finding out how you’ll behave if you’re placed in a similar situation while working for them.

What to Focus On When Answering This Question

Be clear and concise about what happened.

You don’t have to go into any of the details, but make sure you mention how you’ve used that experience to get better at your job and avoid similar blunders.

What to Avoid When Answering This Question

Never make excuses or blame others for something you did wrong.

Even if you’re only partly to blame, take full responsibility and move on.

Example Answer

“There was this one time when I had a few weeks to develop various components of a project, but I didn’t plan for it that well.

Unfortunately, I couldn’t meet the deadline, which forced team members to miss their deadline as well because they needed my contribution and I couldn’t deliver.”

What Is Your Work Style?

This is one of those questions that seems easy to answer at first.

But, it can reveal so much more about your character than just your work style.

Why Is This Question Asked?

Interviewers always try to slip in this question to determine whether you make a good fit with the work environment and company culture.

They also want to know more about your soft skills, such as problem-solving, time management, empathy, and leadership.

What to Focus On When Answering This Question

Research the company before heading to your interview.

The better you understand how it operates, the more you’ll know how to present a suitable answer.

What to Avoid When Answering This Question

Avoid giving a long, expanded answer.

That could give your interviewer the wrong impression that you’re not as trustworthy as you appear.

Keep it brief and to the point.

Example Answer

My work style is pretty flexible. I try to focus on one project at a time and give it my full attention to ensure the best results before moving on to the next.

Explain Why Your Background and Experience Are Good for this Job

This is a pretty straightforward question, but it adds valuable insight as to your level of skill sets and how they can benefit the company.

Why Is This Question Asked?

Basically, interviewers use this question to gauge whether you’re a good candidate for the job opening or not.

What to Focus On When Answering This Question

This is where you should definitely showcase all your successes and accomplishments.

Focus on the most impressive or the most recent, especially those that highlight your communication skills.

What to Avoid When Answering This Question

Again, it’s better to keep your answer brief and to the point.

Give only relevant examples so you don’t come across as trying to oversell your capabilities and skill sets.

Example Answer

“I’ve acquired a handful of relevant experiences and skills that I’ll bring with me to this company to ensure its thriving success.

That’s why I’m confident that I’m the best candidate for this role.”

Additional Tips for Communication Interviews

Check out these additional tips for success for great interviews to help ensure smooth sailing during the hiring process.

How Do You Prepare for a Communication Interview?

Start by researching the industry.

Then, read about the company and the responsibilities that come with the job you’re applying for.

Next, prepare several copies of your resume and other important documents and make sure you pack your bag ahead of time.

What Should You Wear to a Communication Interview?

The general rule is to dress in business casual.

For men, this is basically business clothing without a mandatory jacket or tie.

Alternatively, female business casual attire consists of a conservative blouse or a smart button-up shirt.

Both choices pair nicely with either classic trousers or a slim skirt.

How Should You Introduce Yourself in a Communication Interview?

It’s also nice when you start the interview with a genial greeting, like “I’m pleased to be here.” or “Thank you for taking the time to meet with me.”

Then, jump in by stating your name and the job you’re applying for.

If you know someone at the company, this would be a perfect opportunity to mention their name.

You can also talk about what they have to say about the company and the people in it.

If not, just start talking about why you’re interested in this particular field.

Then, talk about how your skills kits can benefit the company.

What Questions Should You Ask at the End of a Communication Interview?

It’s natural for the majority of the questions being asked will be aimed at you, the prospective employee. However, you should also feel free to ask the interviewer a few questions of your own, such as:

  • What’s your favorite/least favorite part about your job?
  • How would you describe the company culture?
  • Can you describe some typical day-to-day responsibilities of this position?

Frequently Asked Questions

Having some insight into some of the standard interviewing techniques in general can also be a big help.

Use these questions to help you gain some clarity.

What Are the 5 Basic Interview Skills?

It’s hard to make a good impression if you’re not prepared before your interview. That’s where these basic interview etiquette rules come in:

  • Know your resume
  • Get there 10–15 minutes ahead of time
  • Ask questions during the job interview
  • Tell a compelling story
  • Monitor your nonverbal cues

What Is the Most Common Communication Interview Question?

The most common type of communication interview question revolves around talking about your strong suits.

Employers will ask you to describe yourself or talk about your greatest accomplishment.

Some even try to throw interviews off by asking them to name a couple of their weaknesses.

Wrapping Up

Prepping for communication interview questions can be overwhelming.

It’s such an expansive field that there’s so much to cover.

Yet, the good news is that the questions all follow a similar format no matter where you’re applying.

This makes it easier to prepare ahead of time by going through each possible question.

Then, craft out your own unique answers to showcase your strengths and help you come across as poised and at ease.

Having that air of self-assuredness will make it easier for the interviewer to see what you can bring to the table to make their company better and more successful.

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