How to Practice the STAR Interview Method

The STAR interview method is a helpful trick to remember if you’re prepping for a job interview. It can help you tackle those dreaded “tell me about a time when…” questions that require a lot of detail. It’s also one of those interview tips and tricks that could increase your chances of getting hired.

If you’re having trouble landing an interview with a company, check out ZipRecruiter. They have millions of active listings that you can browse and apply to for free.

What is the STAR Interview Method?

star interview method

The STAR interview method is a technique you can use to answer behavioral interview questions. It stands for Situation, Task, Action, and Result. By going through each of the four steps, you can give a comprehensive and detailed answer.

Situation: Explain the scenario in detail.

Task: Describe what you needed to do in the scenario

Action: Discuss steps you took to address the issue

Result: Share how the scenario benefited from your actions

When Can I Use the STAR Interview Method?

It’s common for interviewers to ask you questions about how you handled certain situations at work. You can use this method to provide in-depth examples based on your real-life experience.

Here are a few interview questions where you can use the STAR method:

  • Have you ever dealt with a difficult client?
  • Tell me about a time you went above and beyond at work.
  • When was the last time you made a mistake?

How to Practice the STAR Interview Method

When searching for jobs, it’s difficult to know what questions will be asked in your interview. However, the following interview tips and trips can help you better prepare.

Review the job description

star interview method

If you’re using ZipRecruiter, you’ll see a detailed description for each job listing. Take note of the skills and job requirements outlined in the description. These are key skills you should focus on referencing during your interview.

Think of examples

star interview method

Now that you know which skills to touch on, think of different situations where you displayed those skills.

Practice speaking

star interview method

Confidence is key for acing a job interview. Once you have your list of scenarios, practice with a friend or in front of a mirror to perfect your answer.

STAR Interview Method Examples

  1. Have you ever dealt with a difficult client?

Situation: When I worked at Google, I was on the customer service team for our Gmail product. That means I was responsible for answering customer requests that came through email, chat, or phone. One day, an upset client called up screaming why her browser wasn’t loading.

Task: I knew that I had to stay calm and walk her through different troubleshooting steps to see what was wrong with her email.

Action: So, I calmly told her I was here to help. Then, we went through different troubleshooting techniques.

Result: Finally, we figured out that her internet wasn’t connected! However, she thanked me for my time and that I was patient enough to help figure out what was wrong.

  1. Tell me about a time you went above and beyond at work. 

Situation: My team was presenting to a client, and we had a tight deadline to meet. Unfortunately, two of my coworkers got sick and weren’t able to be at work to help with the presentation.

Task: I had to finish the presentation and attend the client meeting by myself.

Action: I delegated smaller non-urgent tasks to other coworkers so I could focus on the presentation.

Result: Even without my teammates by my side, I could complete the project on time. Best of all, the meeting went so well that the client hired us on the spot!

More Interview Help

Mastering the STAR interview method is key if you want to impress your future employer. You might also want to think about questions that you can ask the interviewer to keep the conversation flowing.

Perfecting a job interview is hard work, and it may take a few times before you feel confident with your interview skills. If you don’t get the job, then pat yourself on the back for trying. And if you haven’t already, create your free ZipRecruiter account to see if there are other open positions that are better suited for your skills!

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