Job interview in French: anticipate your questions

Introduce yourself well for a successful job interview in French

Are you applying for a job and the big day is approaching? No matter what your level is, in order to succeed in your French interview, you need to start by presenting yourself fully and concisely. So it's important to present yourself in the following clear sentences:

  • your name (nom);
  • your education (parcours académique);
  • your work history (parcours professionnel);
  • your hobbies (passions).

Don't hesitate to practise your French by saying phrases in different ways, so that you can adapt to your recruiter. Remember to introduce yourself in a fluent and catchy way, without forgetting the courtesy phrases. The very first exchange is the most important as it will define the rest of your interview!

English expression French expression
How are you today? Comment allez-vous aujourd’hui ?
Did you have a nice weekend? Avez-vous passé un bon weekend ?
My name is… Je m’appelle…
I am … years old J’ai … ans
I have spent the last years developing my … skills at … J’ai passé ces dernières années à développer mes compétences de … chez …

Share your professional experience during your interview in French

During your interview in French, if you want to obtain the job in the company for which you are applying, you will need to talk about your professional experience. Remember to start by highlighting the roles and skills you have developed that correspond to the needs of the company you are applying to.

English expression French expression
I am an experienced … and i have good … skills. Je suis expérimenté(e) en tant que… et j’ai de bonnes compétences de …
During my career, I learned a lot about … Au long de ma carrière, j’ai beaucoup appris concernant …
I have … years experience doing/in/with … J’ai des années d’expérience en tant que …
I know how to … Je sais comment …
I think my skills can be useful for the company Je pense que mes compétences peuvent être utiles à l’entreprise
When i was in charge of … i had to deal with … and i think this experience might be beneficial for your company Quand j’étais responsable de … j’ai dû m’occuper de … et je pense que cette expérience serait un plus pour votre entreprise
I have always been deft J’ai toujours été doué …

Let your personality stand out from the crowd to succeed in your french interview

During an interview, these questions often come up: what are your strengths (forces) and weaknesses (faiblesses)? The trick is to practise talking about your strengths (forces) and weaknesses (faiblesses) by revising the vocabulary you will use so that you can express yourself as fluently as possible.

English expression French expression
I can manage cross-functional groups Je peux manager des équipes
I’ve always been a natural leader J’ai toujours été un(e) leader naturel(le)
I am creative Je suis créatif
I am empathetic Je suis empathique
I know how to work under pressure Je sais travailler sous la pression
English expression French expression
I am naturally shy Je suis naturellement timide
I’m frustrated if goals aren’t achieved Je suis frustré(e) si les objectifs ne sont pas atteints
I need to be under pressure to be really efficient Je dois être sous la pression pour travailler de façon vraiment efficace
I can be too critical with myself Je sous trop exigeant(e) avec moi-même
I take on too much responsibility J’ai tendance à assumer trop de responsabilités

Examples of questions you might be asked at an interview in French

At your interview in French, just as when you apply for a job in anywhere else, you will start with broad, formal questions, which will be refined as the conversation progresses.

English expression French expression
Tell us a little about yourself Dis en nous plus sur toi
How would you describe yourself? Comment tu te décrirais ?
What are your strengths? Quelles sont tes qualités ?
What are your weaknesses? Quelles sont tes faiblesses ?
Why do you want to work for our company? Pourquoi veux-tu travailler pour notre entreprise ?
Are you a team player? Sais-tu travailler en équipe ?
Why are you leaving your current job? Pourquoi quittes-tu ton travail actuel ?

Final tip: speaking fluently is essential for a successful interview in French

To introduce yourself correctly in French, you need to be at ease when you speak. This involves working on your pronunciation and intonation so that they are clear and understandable. You can practise in front of a mirror, for example.

For a successful interview in French, you can also use the resources at Swiss French School, or take our French language courses. We place a great emphasis on oral expression and comprehension: with SFS, you'll have everything you need for a successful interview!

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