Top 20 Open-Ended Interview Questions And How To Answer Them In 2023

There are several ways through which interviewers ask questions in a job interview. The questions could be direct or indirect; they could also be open-ended.

Answering open-ended questions can be tricky especially if you do not know what is required of you. Interviewers often ask open-ended questions to dive deep into the candidate’s psyche and have a better understanding of their personality and skills. 

That being said, the ability to calmly and thoughtfully answer open-ended questions speaks about the candidate’s ability to think critically, also it puts their problem-solving skills on display. 

Being an excellent communicator is a major boost when answering open-ended questions. The answerers to these questions are often detailed. The ability to chronologically arrange your thoughts and convey them in a manner that is easy to understand, and paints the right picture for the listeners is something the interviewer will most likely keep an eye out for.

If you do not know what open-ended questions are, or you don’t know what open-ended questions to exact in your upcoming interview, you have come to the right place. 

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Let this article serve as a guide and cheat sheet. I have compiled the top 20 open-ended interview questions, and went as far as providing tips on answering them like a professional!

What are Open-Ended Questions?

Simply put, open-ended questions are questions designed to make the person answering them give well-detailed explanations. These are questions that cannot be answered with a yes or no. on the surface, it may seem like the purpose of these types of questions is to make one talk more. 

While that may be true, they serve another purpose, and we believe that is the main purpose of it; open-ended questions derive qualitative answers from the person answering them. 

By asking these types of questions, the interviewer is giving the candidate enough room to give a well-detailed account of what is being asked with no form of influence or limitation from the interviewer.

Another noteworthy thing to remember here is that there are no right or wrong answers. For this reason alone, some candidates might find it hard to answer.

However, that there is no correct answer can be an advantage, offering flexibility in the way they approach the question. 

An ideal answer will show that the candidate is ideal for the open position and showcase their previous experience in similar roles.

Now that you what open-ended questions are about, let’s get down to the compiled list of top 20 open-ended interview questions and how to answer them.

What is the Purpose of Open-Ended Questions Interview Questions?

Open-ended questions allow the interviewers the opportunity to collect qualitative answers from the potential employees that are full of information. 

You are allowed to answer and share whatever you want with no restriction or hindrance, letting the recruiter gather as much information as possible to decide. 

Open-ended interview questions also gauge a person’s communication skills and oratory, conciseness, and attention to detail.

Top 20 Open-Ended Questions Interview Questions and How To Answer Them

1. How would you describe yourself?

This is one of the most asked open-ended interview questions in interviews. It isn’t so hard to figure out why that is. Interviewers always want to find out what type of person the candidate they are interviewing is. 

The trick here is not to rush it, rather, approach the question as though you are conversing with an old friend. The more you can express yourself, the better.

2. What gets you out of bed every morning?

This question finds out your source of motivation. Be careful not to answer as though you are asked a close-ended question like “are you motivated?” the answer will either be a yes or a no.

You are expected to give some fleshy account of the thing or things that motivate you to get out of bed every morning to grind.

3. Tell me something about you that is not on your resume

This is another variant of the first question. Rather than panicking, trying desperately to recall what is on your own resume, you should simply tell the interviewer about leisure activities, your passions outside of work, some juicy piece of information about yourself.

4. Why do you think you are a perfect fit for this job?

This question measures the candidate’s confidence in their gained skills and experience. you should not be afraid to sell yourself. Talk about those traits and skills of yours makes you a perfect fit for the job.

5. How did you find out we were hiring?

This question might seem simple, it might seem like a close-ended question, but really, it isn’t. for you to be searching for a job, you must be unemployed, looking for better work conditions, or thinking about quitting your current job for many reasons. 

Do you see where we are going with this? It isn’t just enough to tell the interviewer about an ad you saw on Twitter.

6. Why are you leaving your current job?

Have you established the link between questions 5 and 6? Sure you have. This is the entire essence of open-ended interview questions; to draw you as much information as possible.

If you want to leave your job, there’s a right procedure. Check out: How to quit a job the right way in 2023 

7. What can you tell me about our company?

One thing you should never do is go to a job interview without thorough research and solid background knowledge. The interviewer will not be shy to find out just how much research you have done.

8. Tell me about an achievement you are proud of

This open-ended interview question should be one of the easier ones. We all love to talk about something outstanding we have achieved, regardless of its size and implications. You should feel right at home here.

Display your passion when talking about your achievements and be sure to let the interviewer know that you are eager for more achievements with their company.

9. What motivates you?

A candidate’s motivation scores big points in any job interview. There is always something that motivates us to aim for greater heights, to change environments, and so on. Find out what motivates you, why do you love the things you love?

10. Where do you see yourself in the future?

A candidate with a long-term and short-term plan is always an appealing candidate. Its human nature to trust those with carefully laid out plans.

11. Why are you interested in this position?

What prompted you to seek the position you are currently vying for? Perhaps you feel you will do an outstanding job, or you have some big plans.

Do not be afraid to let the interviewer know. Confidence is attractive.

12. Why did you leave your previous job?

Some people may think that this question is aimed at highlighting some weakness or some negative aspect in their career. That isn’t so. People quit their jobs for many reasons; relocation, better work conditions, health-related issues, and so on. It is quite normal for any employer to be curious about why potential employees left their past jobs.

13. What are your biggest strengths and weaknesses?

This open-ended question is another one of the most likely questions to be asked in practically every type of job interview. It Is aimed at assessing the candidate’s self-worth and awareness.

14. What can you offer us that other candidates can’t?

Remember earlier we said something about selling yourself. Well, this is it? What makes you stand out from others? What do you have that they don’t?

Even if you feel as though there isn’t anything special about you, do not panic, simply talk about all your great qualities.

15. Why should we hire you?

This question is asked to gauge your level of confidence. List all the great things you will bring to the table if you are hired. Fresh ideas, positive energy, a full-proof plan to improve productivity, you name it!

16. In what kind of environment do you thrive?

Will you thrive in a highly competitive environment? Or a slow-paced one? Where do you feel most comfortable, and why?

17. What is your dream job?

Nearly everyone out there has a dream job, and they range from weird ones to not-so-weird ones. The essence of this as one of the open-ended interview questions is to know the aspirations and dreams of the candidate.

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18. Do you have other aspirations?

Talk about your dreams and all the things you wish to achieve. Even your interviewer has dreams and aspirations. That should put you at ease.

19. What do you hope to achieve with us?

You want to join our rank, that’s great! Why do you want to join us? What are your plans? What goals do you have? How do you want to go about achieving them?

 20. What are your long-term and short-term goals?

Again, a person with a carefully laid out plan comes off as more trustworthy and reliable than a person with no plans. You want to be seen as someone that is reliable and trustworthy. Start thinking about those plans before you the big interview day.


This brings us to the end of our top 20 open-ended questions and how to answer them. We are sure by now you feel as though questions aren’t so scary. The trick behind successfully answering them is to be you and relax.

Some people suggest you picture your audience in their underwear in order to get over stage fright, here it will be wise to simply imagine the interviewer as an old friend; that will help you relax the nerves considerably. Be sure not to get too friendly. 

Lastly, practice a lot, preferably in front of a mirror, perfect your mannerism as much as you can, or practice with a buddy, and oil your system before the big day. You got this!



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