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Standard Interview Questions


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I've received feedback that I need to talk more about who I am as a person rather than what I've done. How would you guys approach this?

Since you asked twice, I'll take a stab. 

They want to know you and why you did the things you've done. Example: "I finished college in 3.5 years" = Something you've done. "I finished college in 3.5 years because I wanted to save money, I enjoyed the challenge, and I was hoping to get deployed/hired sooner" = Says something about YOU and your work ethic and values. 

Question that comes to mind is when they say "Tell me about yourself." They don't want ONLY want to hear about where you grew up, where you went to school, what jobs you've had, etc. Your resume tells them that, and they've already read that. They want to know what makes you you. What do you like to do, what are your strengths, what are your weaknesses, what bugs you, what motivates you, and so on. Sure what you do reflects on who you are, but it's not the whole story. 

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Since you asked twice, I'll take a stab. 

They want to know you and why you did the things you've done. Example: "I finished college in 3.5 years" = Something you've done. "I finished college in 3.5 years because I wanted to save money, I enjoyed the challenge, and I was hoping to get deployed/hired sooner" = Says something about YOU and your work ethic and values. 

Question that comes to mind is when they say "Tell me about yourself." They don't want ONLY want to hear about where you grew up, where you went to school, what jobs you've had, etc. Your resume tells them that, and they've already read that. They want to know what makes you you. What do you like to do, what are your strengths, what are your weaknesses, what bugs you, what motivates you, and so on. Sure what you do reflects on who you are, but it's not the whole story. 

This. Don't give info alone, give context. At least for me, I gave a history of my wanting to fly and everything I've done to get to the interview. Were most of those steps the same as everyone else? Sure. Did my circumstances (LASIK, time to completion, working full time while going after it, etc.) give me some unique story? Yep. Pick the point of the story - showed dedication, persevered through XYZ, etc. and then fill in the blanks.

I wrote my cover letter this way and more or less walked through it in the "tell us about yourself" part of the interview. Also show that you've thought it through and have plans (e.g. what will you do for civilian work if you're ANG/AFR) so they get that you're full-concept ready to rock.

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  • 3 months later...
  • 1 month later...

First, thank you to all the folks that shared their experiences in this thread. It was a tremendous help in preparation for the board and I couldn't be more thankful. I boarded on Saturday (UTA weekend) and got the call yesterday that I was selected for an RPA position with the guard unit.

If you take the time to read through this thread and prepare a solid answer, you will really have a good foundation for the questions that will be asked of you. Also, it has been said multiple time but I will repeat it as well. Be yourself, you will be boarding with guys/gals that have been around the block a time or two, they will see right through you if you throw any BS out on the table. Be confident that you earned the opportunity to board, be honest, be yourself and answer the questions asked of you backed with examples.

To me they want to know a couple of things

1) Can you make it through pilot training, do you understand the commitment?

2) Do we want to fly with you for the next 20 some years...

 

 

Here are some key questions were a great help in my preparation;

Hit specific things you want to hammer home when they ask "tell us about yourself". Let them know what you've accomplished and succeeded at in your career and/or education up to this point, challenges you faced as well.

Why do you want to be an Officer? A pilot? Which is more important and why?

Do you understand the difference between URT/UPT and the commitment level needed for both?

Would you prefer URT or UPT and why?

Why should we select you? What do you bring to the table? (basically strengths question reworded)

3 adjectives to describe yourself.

What qualities make a good leader?

What is your style of leadership?

What is your greatest weakness?

----------------------

Questions that were not asked but would be good to have answers for and good for overall prep...

Know the airframe and weapons system!

Know a brief history of the unit and any awards they received in conflicts

5yr / 10yr

Greatest accomplishment or challenge you overcame

Greatest failure

How do you handle conflict with another airman?

Have you ever disagreed with  your supervisor? How did you handle it?

How do you handle criticism?

What makes a good team?

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My interview questions back in 2000....

#1.  What is the oldest brewery in the United States: A = Yuengling (I thought/and answered it was the Pabst Blue Ribbon brewery established in 1844, the board actually appreciated that answer and was impressed I even pulled that that out of my A$$).

#2:  I see you like guns on your resume....what's your favorite and why: A= Anything in .45. S&W .40 wasn't super huge back then. 

There were a few more questions...related to some dumb moves the Navy made with it's aircraft inventory (few of the board members were former Navy NFO's like me), I answered honestly that the Navy was mistaken and budget driven vice capability driven...that was a SHACK. 

I ended up getting the job, but looking at the 0-6 across the board table (lined with all the other 0-5/0-4's in the sqd) asking these questions , I was shaking my head.

Those were "fishing" questions....see if you would be a good fit in the bar and how you reacted to unusual question(s).  They had already made up their mind. 

Great bunch of folks, unfortunately it was short lived (and back to Navy/SOF flying I went). 

Cheers

ATIS

 

 

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  • 2 months later...

I'd also like to express my thanks to the people who have shared their interview experiences. It was relaxing going into this process with even just an idea of what to expect.

There were a few guidelines I tried to stick to during the social events and interviews.

1) Don't over-do it. You may want to give the impression that you fit in, but being chummy doesn't come across well. Know when to quiet down and listen.

2) Reference an experience on your resume in passing. Don't brag on it, but use it as a sort of verification. It may peak their interest.

3) Find out what they do on the side. Odds are you'll share some common experiences that you can laugh and talk about. For example, one of the guys on my board had flown skydivers before, as had I, and we found it very easy to talk about.

4) You are being watched, before and after your interview. Act like it.

5) You will probably have some enlisted folks babysitting you before you head in. Talk with them, be nice, and find out things from their perspective. How you interact with them can be a consideration. As I said, you're being watched...

 

This was my experience. As far as the questions are concerned, mine were very similar to the ones posted above, so if you practice with those you will be all set. Good luck!

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  • 3 months later...
On 3/10/2009 at 11:01 AM, Perch said:

Air Guard F-16 alert unit

 

 

  • "Tell us about yourself?"
  • "How do you feel about maybe having to kill people?"
  • "How do you feel about the possibility of having to shoot down a civilian airliner?"
  • "Which is more important, being an officer or a pilot?"
  • "Make me believe your not going to quit or washout"
  • "Why you over the other candidates?"
  • "If your dog was drowning and a complete stranger was drowning, who would you save if you could only save one?"
  • "My biggest failure"
  • "Why the F-16?"
  • "What do you know about our mission both stateside and overseas?"
  • "How are you a leader?"

 

 

There were a couple more of the "standard" questions and maybe some others that I'm forgetting.

Best way to answer the "How do you feel about the possibility of having to shoot down a civilian airliner?" question?

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  • 1 month later...

Hi Guys! So I'm in the process of applying to units as well. I was annoyed with the fact that I had to go to guardreservejobs plus many of the specific units websites. So I created a script that goes to all the websites and brings them all into one. This will save a lot of time to keep all of us from going to each individual units webpage. Yes a lot of jobs do get posted to guardreservejobs but not all. I missed out on a few because I thought that was the one stop shop. Check out my website when you get a chance!

www.afpilotjobs.com

it's still very much in work and I'm still working on some things but for now it's fairly up to date with some current job listings. If you have any questions or find any issues feel free to email me at afpilotjobs@gmail.com. Good luck to all out there applying!

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  • 3 weeks later...
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On 12/21/2016 at 8:44 PM, Learjetter said:

Best way to answer the "How do you feel about the possibility of having to shoot down a civilian airliner?" question?

This is a tough one.  However you can mention that no one wants to shoot down an airliner.  You hope it never had to come down to it.  But if the situation required it, and the leadership above you gave you the order, then it is a part of the job and you wouldn't have a choice but to do it without hesitation.

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  • 4 months later...

F-16 unit:

1. Tell us about yourself

2. What do you know about the area?

3. Job after training

4. Tell us about the aircraft and our mission

5. How do you feel about killing people?

6. How will you complete UPT with a family?

7. Work history

8. Why should we pick you?

Edited by Hopefulflyer389
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  • 2 months later...

I have a few interviews coming up and was wondering if anyone could provide some advice on a closing statement (is it recommended? Just summarize what I've already said?) and if there's any questions I should make sure to ask? Is it ok to ask if I fit into what they're looking for? Thanks in advance!

Edited by AlphaPapa
Typo
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  • 3 months later...

I have consolidated a handful of the questions on this thread in case anyone wants to print them out for an interview prep.

 

What leadership skills do you bring to the table?

What is your career plan after you complete UPT?

Why do you want to fly XXXXXX?

How do you feel about killing someone?

Explain induced drag.

What’s your idea of a perfect day?

Do you wear pink shirts?

Do you have a fart can on your car?

Have you ever met an f-15 pilot, if so did he hit on you?

Favorite movie?

Biggest accomplishment?

Biggest failure?

What did you learn from it?

Explain your speeding tickets

Why did you get a C in calculus?

How do you deal with stress?

What do you think UPT is going to be like? Have you done any research?

Why do you think you should get this slot over the other candidates?

What is the toughest thing you have ever done?

What is your civilian job?

With your civilian job, how often will you be able to fly with us?

What accomplishment are you most proud of in your life and why?

How do you think your civilian aviation experience will fit into UPT?

What makes you think you'll be successful at UPT?

How would my best friends describe me?

What do I think is my biggest fault?

Define the term Leadership

What does it mean to me to be an officer?

Tell me about a time that you had a disagreement with a peer and how you dealt with it

Why do you want to be an Officer? A pilot? Which is more important and why?

How do you feel about the possibility of having to shoot down a civilian airliner?

If your dog was drowning and a complete stranger was drowning, who would you save if you could only save one?

Who has been the most influential person in your life and why?

Are there any questions for us?

Why you?

Tell me what leadership and integrity mean to you, and how they go together

What will you do if you don't get selected?

Why didn’t join the Air Force earlier?

What are 3 characteristics of a good officer?

Have you ever had to make a difficult decision?

What else are you interested in besides flying?

Loyalty vs Integrity?

Why fighters?

Are you applying to other units?

How would you interact with other UPT classmates?

Why you over the other people asked to interview?

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  • 2 months later...

Not sure it was the right thing or not, but I had several questions prepared to ask them about the unit and the mission. They seemed to like that I had some thought out questions to ask. In my opinion it shows that you are genuinely interested in them and what they do/ more in-depth knowledge of what you may be doing in the future. 

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  • 3 months later...

Stumbled across this forum when researching UPT boards. This post is great and I’ll be spending a lot of time in here reading and maybe asking questions. 

 

I’ve got about 11 years enlisted, USAF, USAFR, and ANG, all as a crew chief on F-16s, and C-130s for a short time. I have no private flying hours and I’m 34.  I’ll finish my undergrad in August, finally after spending the last two and half years full-time student and full-time employed. I’ve taken the AFOQT (don’t know scores yet)  and I’ll be taking the TBAS in Early June to submit my whole package to the 176th/168th combined board for the AKANG.  I know for my situation I might as well be trying to hit bullseye in a blacked out room without knowing which direction the target is, but I’m going to take a shot anyways. If I get a board interview in September,  I’ll add my experience here as well. 

 

I do have a question though. Are the UPT boards usually a weekend ordeal? Meet and greet on one day, and then interviews the next? From what I’ve been reading on here is a lot of people elude to that. 

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  • 2 weeks later...

Interviewed at a C-130 unit:

Tell us about our unit.

Tell us about yourself.

Tell us about a time you...disagreed with a coworker/lost your cool.

Talk about your leadership experience and how you dealt with leading people with more/less experience than you.

I also had some more tailored questions based on my work history and resume, as I’m sure everyone does.. so you are a lawyer, why do you want to become a pilot/serve.

One very tough scenario question, so the regs say no drinking within 12 hours of a flight, you are co-pilot, the captain is drunk at the 12 hour mark the night before a flight and showing no signs of slowing...what do you do? 

What are your plans post-seasoning?

What are your plans to prepare for UPT?

I’m not sure if I’ll be selected, but getting the interview and visiting the unit/seeing the planes was an incredible experience. 

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