How to pass a Japanese Interview in 2021
Your chances are already looking pretty good to pass the Japanese Interview.
What should I do before the Japanese interview?
1) Make sure you have an appropriate outfit.
“Avoid black jackets and black ties”
2) Prepare your Japanese responses
3) Brush up on your Japanese etiquette.
4) Know where the interview is located.
How to show the correct etiquette when entering the room?
Sample of six type of questions you will likely to be asked.
1)自己紹介をお願いします/ Please give us a self-introduction.
２）自己PRをお願いします/ Please give us a self-evaluation.
３）あなたの強みを教えてください/ Please tell us about your strong points.
４）当社の業界の希望する理由を教えてください/ Why do you want to work in our company’s field?
5) なぜ弊社を志望されたのですか？orなぜ当社に応募されたのですか？/ Please tell me why you applied to this company.
6) なぜ転職をしようと思われたのですか？」or「転職理由を教えてください。/Please tell me why you decided to change your job.
Taboo questions you may be asked in Japanese interviews
Below are a few of the more unexpected questions you may be asked in a Japanese job interview. The key point is not to look visibly shocked when asked, even if it’s something that may be frowned upon, socially unacceptable, or even illegal to ask in your home country.
You might feel like “How is someone asking me this with a straight face?” But they do!
Prepare yourself for the worst interview questions, so you can plan your reactions.
Age – “How old are you?”
Age is seen as a kind of respect and a way of establishing hierarchy in a Japanese company. If you’re young, a job interviewer may ask you something like “Do you feel old/mature enough to take on this responsibility?”. If you’re older, you may be asked if you feel comfortable working with young people. Don’t be insulted by being asked your age during a job interview in Japan – Japan is well-known for treating its elders with respect.
Sex – “Do you think it’s ok for a woman to do this job?”
Compared to some countries, Japan can be quite backwards when it comes to women’s rights. If you’re going into a sector or role that’s traditionally dominated by the opposite sex, you may be asked “Do you think it’s ok for a woman to do this kind of job?” Don’t be visibly offended in the interview to the point it shuts down, wait until after it ends. This may indicate that the company is more conservative, and you can choose to turn the job offer down.
Address – “Whereabouts in Tokyo do you live?”
Particularly, you may be asked what part of the city you live in and what station you’re near. Some interviewers want to judge the socio-economic class of the person by the location they live. Certain areas of Tokyo and Japan are associated with different areas of socio-economic background – for example, whether you’re from a more affluent or working-class area.
Marital Status – “Are you married or in a relationship?”
The interviewer might want to know if you’re single or married, and where and how you can be assigned. They may need to know whether you can be sent to work in another part of the country or another office branch in Japan. Are you able to take a promotion that involves travel, or are you in a relationship that may affect the personnel decisions of the company? Consider how much flexibility you want to have travel-wise, and ask questions too.
Children/Dependents – “Do you have any children, are you planning to?”
This is usually to be accommodating – many Japanese companies have families with small children. It’s not right to ask, but some companies may ask about your child-bearing plans. If you’re a woman, you may want to shy away from this question. It’s entirely up to you how much you share. Being asked this won’t have anything to do with the job, but it may show that it’s a more conservative company – you may even decide to turn down the offer.
Unsure or worried about how to respond to bad interview questions, or want to know more about what to avoid in job interviews? Our team can help prepare and support you.