If you’re the type to excitedly count down the days to an upcoming job interview, you’re in the minority. In fact, 92 percent of adults are anxious about them, with 15 percent saying not knowing how to answer an interviewer’s question is a top concern.

But if you’re serious about re-entering the workforce, being able to handle tough questions is an important skill. The first step? Brushing up on some of the tricky gap-related questions you’re likely to encounter.

How will you balance work and family obligations?

“My whole family is supportive of my decision to get back to my career and everyone is prepared to do what is necessary to make it work.”

OR

“I took time off to care for a relative who is now in an assisted living facility and well cared for.”

Do you feel that your professional skills are up-to-date?

“Over the past couple years I’ve done freelance work, taken online courses, and attended workshops. I’ve maintained my skills and expertise by reading, attending networking events, donating time to charitable organizations that needed volunteers with my qualifications.”

Why did you leave your last job?

“I resigned from my last job to be a stay-at-home mother. I’m now ready to re-enter the workforce and contribute to your company in the following ways.”

You seem overqualified for the job. Why should we hire you?

“This is the level and position that I want and specifically sought out your company. I am confident that I can exceed in the role and become more valuable to you sooner.”

How do you feel reporting to someone with less experience?

“A good manager has the knowledge and ability to bring out the best in their people, regardless of age or years of experience.”

Why are you changing careers?

“While I have been home, I have been active in the PTA over the past 5 years. Over the last two years I took on the officer role of Treasurer, managing a $20K budget and collaborating with school leaders and parents. I’ve learned a lot working in education and excited to transition to an accounting role in an academic institution.”

OR

“I’ve been involved with xyz charitable organization for 4 years and successfully led their big fundraiser the past 2 years. I am looking to apply my project management and people management skills as an event manager working for an organization that is committed to helping people in the community.”

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