Systems Administrator Interview Preparation Guide
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78 Systems Administrator Questions and Answers:

1 :: Tell me about a time when you were forced to make an unpopular decision?

Not every decision is popular. In fact, almost every decision is bound to make someone unhappy at some point. The key is to demonstrate how it impacted others positively and why you chose it.
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2 :: What are your strengths As Systems Administrator?

This is one of the most common questions you will be asked. Give an answer relevant to the skills and qualities relevant to the position you are applying to. The interviewer is trying to find if your strengths match the job. For example, if you are applying for a job As Systems Administrator where accuracy is an important issue, one of your strengths could be that you have an eye for detail. It may useful to find different words to describe similar attributes and qualities in order to avoid repetition.
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3 :: Do you consider yourself successful?

You should always answer yes to this question. Briefly explain why without going on and on. If you communicate that you're more successful than you really are you may come off as arrogant or unrealistic. A goof explanation is that you have set professional goals and that you have met some of these goals and are on track to meet more in the near future.
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4 :: Your client is upset with you for a mistake you made, how do you react?

Acknowledge their pain - empathize with them. Then apologize and offer a solution to fix the mistake.
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5 :: How do you stay organized?

By maintaining proper routine every day. Putting my strongest points with my weakness. High priority always comes first As Systems Administrator.
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6 :: Tell me about a time when you had to make a decision without all the information you needed. How did you handle it As Systems Administrator? Why? Were you happy with the outcome?

In many scenarios, you will not have all the information needed. The key is to make the best possible decision based on what you deem to be a sufficient amount of information.
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7 :: Why do you want to work for this company?

Again be honest. The interviewer will be able to sense very quickly if you're be disingenuous. Your answer should be base on your person reasons, career aspirations as well as research you've performed on the company. The most important thing you should do is make sure to relate your answer to your long-term career goals.
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8 :: What would your previous employer say is your greatest strength?

Be prepared for this question. If you have to sit and think about it it's going to appear as if you're not sure or that you've never identified your own value in the work place - not good. You don't have to have a complex response. Keep it simple and honest. For example, several possibilities could be Leadership, Problem solving ability, Initiative, Energy, Work ethic, Innovative, etc., etc.
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9 :: How do you think you might fit this position As Systems Administrator?

An important part of research before the interview is what the company does and how the job role relates to that. This includes the company philosophy and working methods. Questions such as this seek to find out how a candidate will fit into the organisation As Systems Administrator. Answer positively; including practical examples of how you anticipate you would perform in the new role.
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10 :: Tell me about a time when you had to think strategically?

There was a time when I was told I had to get rid of 20% of my people. I had to determine which persons I needed the most by determining who could do what. I had to put aside personal feelings so that I could keep a working crew to handle he same workload with less people.
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11 :: If you had enough money to retire would you?

Just be honest. If you would retire then say so. But since you can't retire, and the interviewer already knows this, simply answer that since you can't this is type of work you prefer doing. However, if you wouldn't retire if you had the money then explain why. Work is an important element of happiness for most people and many won't retire even when they can.
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12 :: Have you ever you have been in a position As Systems Administrator where you've had to fire someone? How did you feel about that experience?

Be very thoughtful about your answer. This is a very serious matter for most companies and requires a very serious answer. You need to express that you will do it when it is the right thing to do but you don't want to give the impression that you're callus to the process. Don't forget that firing is not the same as laying someone off - it typically is for the direct benefit of the company.
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13 :: Top 12 Stress Based Interview Questions As Systems Administrator:

Some jobs require employees to work under stress, and some interviewers just like to see how applicants handle stressful questions.

There are many questions designed for putting the interviewee into an awkward situation, or throwing them off, to see how they do under stress. Here are some samples.

1. How do you feel this interview is going As Systems Administrator?

2. How would you handle undeserved criticism from a superior?

3. How many other jobs are you applying for?

4. What would you do if you saw a colleague stealing supplies or equipment?

5. What did you do when you had a boss you didn’t get along with?

6. What would you do if a colleague took credit for your idea, and got a promotion?

7. Was the stress of your previous job too much for you?

8. What would you do if a colleague admitted to lying on their resume to get the job?

9. What would you do if a customer verbally insulted you in front of co-workers?

10. What would you change about the design of a baseball hat?

11. Why were you fired from your previous job As Systems Administrator?

12. How successful do you think you've been so far?
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14 :: What has disappointed you about a previous job?

Again, this question could get you in trouble so tread carefully. Some good answers might be that your previous job didn't provide any room for growth, that you were laid off due to a mandatory reduction in staff, that they closed their office in your state and required you to relocate, etc. Make sure not to mention anything negative about the people you worked with, the company in general or the job itself.
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15 :: What do you know about our company?

You always want to make sure that you're pretty familiar with the company that you're interviewing with. Nothing looks worse than a candidate who knows nothing about the company they say they're interested in working for. Find out everything you can about the company, its culture and its goals. You will also want to know how the company is positioned in its market as well as who its major competitors are.
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16 :: Did you consider yourself a team player?

Of course you're a team player - who isn't. But a simple yes probably isn't the response the interviewer is looking for. Be ready to provide specific example of how you've worked as part of a cohesive team to get things accomplished and how you've focus on team performance rather than individual performance. Make sure not to brag as this will make it appear as that you're more concerned about your own performance and accomplishments than those of the team.
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17 :: If you felt like you were hitting the proverbial "wall" and getting burned out, what would you do to re-energize yourself?

Take a break to rest. Work in smaller increments of time to increase focus with breaks in between. Delegate tasks to those that are willing to help.
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18 :: What type of people do you not work well with?

Be very careful answering this question as most organization employ professionals with an array of personalities and characteristics. You don't want to give the impression that you're going to have problems working with anyone currently employed at the organization. If you through out anything trivial you're going to look like a whiner. Only disloyalty to the organization or lawbreaking should be on your list of personal characteristics of people you can't work with.
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19 :: What makes you right for this position?

This question can be tricky because you need to show your worth As Systems Administrator without sounding cocky or arrogant. Research the business ahead of time and become familiar with its mission and values. Take the time to figure out how your personal qualities fit the needs of the business and use that fit to provide your answer.
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20 :: Tell me a difficult situation you have overcome in the workplace?

Conflict resolution, problem solving, communication and coping under pressure are transferable skills desired by many employers As Systems Administrator.
Answering this question right can help you demonstrate all of these traits.
☛ Use real-life examples from your previous roles that you are comfortable explaining
☛ Choose an example that demonstrates the role you played in resolving the situation clearly
☛ Remain professional at all times – you need to demonstrate that you can keep a cool head and know how to communicate with people
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21 :: Describe a time when you anticipated potential problems and developed preventive measures?

The key here is to show that you were proactive. How did you find out about the potential problems? How did you address it quickly?
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22 :: What is your greatest strength As Systems Administrator?

This is your time to shine. Just remember the interviewer is looking for work related strengths As Systems Administrator. Mention a number of them such as being a good motivator, problem solver, performing well under pressure, being loyal, having a positive attitude, eager to learn, taking initiative, and attention to detail. Whichever you go for, be prepared to give examples that illustrate this particular skill.
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23 :: Tell me why do you want this job As Systems Administrator?

Bad Answer: No solid answer, answers that don't align with what the job actually offers, or uninspired answers that show your position is just another of the many jobs they're applying for.

Good answer: The candidate has clear reasons for wanting the job that show enthusiasm for the work and the position, and knowledge about the company and job.
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24 :: Are you willing to work overtime or odd hours?

Be completely honest. You don't want to lie to get the job if you're not going to work the hours required.
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25 :: What is your philosophy towards work?

This is typically a straightforward question that merits a straightforward answer. Do you have strong worth ethic? Will you do whatever it takes to make sure the job gets done? Just say so in your response. Keep it short, direct and positive.
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26 :: Do you know anyone that works with our company?

Sometimes companies have policies relating to the hiring of individuals related to current company employees. If you are related to anyone working for the company make sure you're aware of company policies before you enter the interview. If you have a friend or acquaintance working for the company make sure have good relationship with this individual before mentioning them.
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27 :: How would you describe your approach to Systems Administrator?

In more general terms, a question such as this gives a candidate the opportunity to talk about their professional philosophy and skills. While the question is general in nature, the best answers are usually quite specific, picking one or two points and exemplifying them with instances from personal history.
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28 :: How do you stay up to date with industry?

Discuss how you stay up to date by reading industry specific sites, magazines, and Google / yahoo news. Also make sure you stay up to date by reading the current news on the company's website.
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29 :: Would you describe yourself as more analytical or interpersonal?

If you answer either, just make sure you explain why. For example, "I would consider myself to be more analytical because I'm good at examining a data set and then understanding how to interpret it in a business environment." or "I'm more of interpersonal person because I enjoy working and collaborating with my teammates and clients"
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30 :: How articulate are you in expressing your ideas?

One of the best ways to answer this question is clearly articulate three points that demonstrate how articulate you are (and in a sense show that in a live setting) - for example: "I would say I'm articulate because one, I typically gather my thoughts before speaking, two, I organize my thoughts well, and three I'm concise when making a point.
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