Top 7 Tricky Job Interview Questions And The Best Way To Answer Them

If you are job hunting, one of the most important things to do is preparing for interviews by coming up with suitable replies to commonly asked interview questions. But truth be told, no matter how prepared you are for a job interview, the recruiter might ask a tricky question that might throw you off-balance. Long pauses or giving a less-than-stellar response might not necessarily ruin your chances of getting the job. But given the competition, every answer you give needs to ‘wow’ the employer.

Ngcareers have put together a few effective responses to tricky interview questions.

1. “You’ve Had Several Jobs in Recent Years, Why Should I Hire You?”

If you have a history of multiple jobs changes in the past couple of years, an employer might think you’re fickle and won’t stay with the company long-term. The trick to answering this question is if possible, avoid the issue of job hopping. Instead, focus on the actual question – why should I hire you?

Feel free to tell the employer that you’ve gained a lot of valuable experience from your previous jobs. As a result, you feel that you’re a better employee and you’re looking to build a long-term relationship with a company that can utilize your skills and offer room for advancement.

2. “You’ve Never Received a Promotion, Why Is This?”

If you are one of those people who have worked with an organization for a while and have never received a promotion, the interviewer may think you lack the necessary skills to move ahead in your career. If your previous employer was a small company, you can tell the interviewer that the company had a small staff and many long-term employees, so there wasn’t a lot of opportunity to advance and move into new positions.

See also: When Are You Due for Promotion/a Raise at Your Current Job?

3. “What Position What You Like to Hold in the Next Five Years?”

Now this particular question carries a lot of weight. If you hesitate, give a blank stare or say “I don’t know,” the interview will automatically think that you haven’t thought about this question. As a result, he might conclude that you have no career direction, which means you might move onto a new job in six months or one year.

Most often than not, interviewers are looking for long-term employees. To answer this question, you could say, “I’ve done my research on your company, and I’m hoping to build a long-term career here. There seems to be opportunity for growth and I’m looking to expand my career.”

4. “Why is There a Gap in Your Employment History?”

If you’re reentering the workforce after taking several months or years off, the employer will want to know why. If you were a stay-at-home parent, tell the interviewer you felt it was important to spend the first few years at home with your child. Or maybe you took time off because you wanted to explore other interests, travel or start a business. Whatever the reason, be honest. At the same time, build the interviewer’s confidence and explain that you’ve kept up-to-date with changes in your industry.


5. “How Many Hours are You Available a Week?”

A lot of job seekers out of desperation tend to shoot themselves in the foot while answering this question. Never say you “I can work as many hours as the employer needs me”. You have to be honest with yourself and the interviewer. Some jobs demand a lot of time and attention. If you’re looking for a healthy work-life balance or a traditional 8 to 5 schedule, make this clear during the interview. Or else, you might run into problems down the road.

Even if you’re looking for a traditional work schedule, you can tell the interviewer that you might be available for the occasional overtime if the company is backlogged and needs to meet a deadline. This demonstrates you’re a team player and willing to go the extra mile, while letting the interviewer know your limits.

6. “Why Was Your Previous Appointment Terminated?”

If you were unfairly fired from your last job, you might be ready to rip your former employer to shreds. Just know that this doesn’t look good on your part. Be honest, don’t make excuses and own up to your mistakes. Give a reason without bashing your previous employer.


7. “What Would You Change About Your Current (or Old) Job?”

Again, you need to be careful not to fall into this trap of bashing your former (current) employer. Even if your current job is terrible and you hate the people you work with, keep it positive and professional. You want to play this answer safe. Instead of saying that your employer is rude or overly demanding, think of other factors you dislike. Maybe you have to commute a very long distance to get to work amidst traffic jams and bad road network, or maybe you currently work for a small company and there’s no room for advancement.

See also: How To Answer Interview Questions: What is your greatest weakness?

Job interviewers will ask a variety of easy and tough questions. Most people can ace an easy question—it’s their responses to tricky questions that decide whether they move onto the next stage of the interview process. A job interview can be nerve-racking and overwhelming. If you learn how to respond, you have a good chance of getting your foot in the door.

What was the trickiest job interview question you have ever been asked? Let us know below…

About Stellamaris Obomanu

Loves to read, loves to write, loves to laugh, loves life and yeah, she's as real as they come.


  1. Yunusa Olayinka says:

    Please can you give us a tip of first timer or fresh graduate interview. Thanks

    • Stellamaris Obomanu says:

      Hello Yunusa Olayinka,

      most of the interview tips given on this platform cuts across all sphares. feel free to go through all our articles on aswering interview questions and you’ll be glad you did.

  2. Ibab Majali says:

    Great… But I kind of agree with Mr. OLAYINKA, PLS help tell us on how to tackle first timer or fresh graduate interview. Thank You!

    • Stellamaris Obomanu says:

      Hi Ibab Majali,

      Ok, Ngcareers will do some research and will post an article in that regards very soon.

  3. Godwin Okenwa says:

    Please, how do I reply a job opening or send my cv to the company is hiring and fits my career? thats my major problem I need an explaination.

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