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Interview Question Database

International

Interviews for an international position can be unique.  The employer has the responsibility to not only determine if you are a right fit for their role and company, but also determine if you can easily transition to a new cultural environment.  The questions that they ask will likely go beyond those asked in a traditional interview to ensure that you would be a good candidate.  Visit the below categories to see a sample of international interview questions.  Please add your tips and comments on your international experiences, in addition to questions that you have been asked during an international interview.

Research a country in advance to prepare for your interviews:

International Working Conditions

QUESTION INTENT

Employers will be evaluating you ability to adapt to different and difficult working environments as you will likely be exposed to hardships while working closely with your new colleagues.

How do you plan to adapt to the working environment and culture abroad?

When asking this question, the employer is in fact asking:
Do you have the maturity and understanding of how different life will be outside of Canada? Have you given going international sufficient consideration?

Answer Tips

Answer Tips

You may want to show your maturity and preparation by pulling your answers from previous experiences, be it adapting to another culture while traveling, adapting to life in a new city, or adapting to the pressures of university. Examples of challenges you faced and how you personally adapted to overcome them and succeed are excellent evidence of your maturaity. 

Have you had experience working with colleagues of a different ethnic background? What were the challenges? Benefits?

The employer is looking to see that you are comfortable working with people from different backgrounds.


Answer Tips

What working conditions do you anticipate will be different in another culture?

This question seeks to determine your level of preparedness for the interview and your ability to immerse yourself in a new culture.


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Tell us about your previous international volunteer or work experiences.

To determine if you have already experienced working internationally, and how you adjusted to a new work environment and culture.


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What qualifications/skills do you possess that will assist in your transition to working internationally?


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Cross Cultural Communication

QUESTION INTENT

Employers will be looking for candidates who value and understand inclusivity and diversity as cross-cultural communication is a highly valued competency global companies seek.  

Describe an environment where you were required to communicate with an individual or group of a differing culture(s).


Answer Tips

What communication skills are required to communicate effectively in a multi-cultural environment?


Answer Tips

International Living Conditions

QUESTION INTENT

Living conditions can vary from country to country. It will be important to a potential employer that you understand the living conditions under which you might be living and that you would be able to adapt to these new environments.

Have you been separated from your family or your loved ones for extended periods of time?

The employer is likely looking to determine your level of independence.

Answer Tips

Have you ever had to cope with loneliness?

The employer is curious to know how you will deal with the sense of loneliness that you are likely to experience while you are away, as well as the kinds of coping mechanisms you have used in the past.


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What kind of support will your family and friends provide while you are away?

The employer may be trying to ensure that you have discussed going abroad with family and friends and have their support so that you will be less likely to back out later on because of hesitations on your family or friends' behalf.


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What strategies will you utilize to cope with living in another country?

A potential employer would be interested to know how you would adapt to life in a new country and how you have prepared.

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Have you ever lived in situations where you have not had a lot of privacy? How important is privacy for you?


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How would you prepare yourself to live in a new country?


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While working internationally, how would you occupy your spare time?


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Why do you think you might like to live in the community in which our company is located?


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What qualifications/skills do you possess that will assist in your transition to working internationally?

The employer is likely looking to learn more about you and your fit with the position.


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What challenges do you think you could encounter when working in another country? How would you manage these challenges?


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What research have you done to prepare for working internationally?


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In the face of frustration, how will you fulfill the terms of your contract and demonstrate loyalty to the organization?


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Why do you want to work abroad?


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