How to Nail Your Answer to “Describe a Typical Workday”

When you’re in a job interview, you might expect a common interview question like “Describe a typical workday,” and you might think it seems relatively straightforward to answer. And it is straightforward. But just because a question is clear and simple doesn’t mean you shouldn’t look at it as another opportunity to show exactly why you’re the right hire.

Why Interviewers Ask This Question
When an interviewer asks you to walk them through a typical workday, your answer can tell them a few different things. First and foremost, an interviewer is looking to see what responsibilities you currently have (or had at your most recent job) and how you approach that work, says Muse career coach Lynn Berger.

Interviewers want “to compare the person’s answer with the job description requirements,” says Muse career coach Steven Davis, owner of Renaissance Solutions Inc. How often do you already do the tasks you’d have to complete in this job? How do you use the skills you’ll need? Interviewers may also ask this question to see what type of work environment you’re used to and compare it to the one that exists at their company, Davis says. For example, if you’re interviewing for a job at a startup or another fast-moving company, says Muse career coach Barb Girson, “They may want to see how you respond to changing environments and your ability to be agile during those changes.”