What To Do When Faced With Trick Interview Questions
Trick interview questions are designed to do one of three thing - make you think, gauge your knowledge, or pick your brain to test you on a personality trait. Some employers ask trick questions to see if you're adaptable, but the inquiries don't even have a right or wrong answer. Here's what you can do if you feel like you've been passed one of these loaded questions.
Pretend you don't understand the question
One of the most effective ways to respond to a trick question is to act like you have an ear infection or a malfunctioning hearing aid. "Huh?" Alternatively, you can respond in another language and pretend you forgot to request interpreter services.
Maybe that's going a little too far, but you can ask the interviewer to repeat the question and give you more clarity. The extra time will allow you to think of an answer while you observe the interviewer's facial expressions to see if you can figure out the question's intent.
Ask if you can get back to that one
The skip response is not as effective as the first method, but it's better than declining the question altogether. Most interviewers are okay with coming back to a challenging question and will ask it again at the end of the session. You can only use your "skip" card once, however. Asking for a second skip can be detrimental to your job search.
Improvise or "wing it."
The third option is to try to make up a good answer in the few seconds you have. It might not be the best answer, but it will be an answer, which is always better than a blank response. Think of a trick question as if it's a multiple-choice test question. You have a higher chance of getting it right if you pick something than you do if you forfeit the question.
Everyone has to answer trick questions at one time or another. Don't stress about it. Choose the option most suitable for you and do your best with it.