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(2022) “What Do You Like To Do For Fun” Best Ways To Ace This Interview Question

“What do you like to do for fun?” is one of the traditional questions you probably have heard more than once in an interview.

At MentorCruise, a thriving online community for mentors and mentees, we understand how preparing the right answers to common interview questions can increase your chances of getting hired, and we guide you every step of the way.

During an interview, hiring managers aren’t just interested in your career accomplishments and skills. Instead, they’re trying to map a holistic image of you as an individual and understand how you can fit into the company culture. Therefore, this question is not to be taken lightly.

If you’re the type of person with rich experiences outside of work, bringing those to the table when answering the “What do you do for fun” question is easy. However, answering can be tricky if your hobbies are less interesting or more private.

In this article, we’ll explain:

  • Why do interviewers ask, “What do you like to do for fun?”

  • How to impactfully answer questions about your hobbies and interests

  • Sample interview answers that can help you win the job

Let’s begin!

Why do interviewers ask, “What do you like to do for fun?”

Interviewers don’t just randomly want to know what people do for fun. You see, you might be the most qualified candidate in the room, but at the end of the day, they’ll have to work alongside you. So, being likable is crucial, especially in those early stages.

Some common variations of this question can be:

  • What are your hobbies?

  • What do you do outside of work?

  • What do you do in your spare time?

From Amazon interviews to local florist interviews, here are some of the most common things hiring managers are trying to figure out by asking you this question:

  • Are you a good fit for the company? A good manager understands how vital team bonding inside and outside of work is. Hiring someone who doesn’t seem interesting enough to blend in with the current employees could create an unhealthy environment. Your hobbies and interests are good indicators of you as a person.

  • Are you balancing your personal and professional life? Reassuring that you’re able to establish a work-life balance is key. Having no life outside of work could indicate that you’re overwhelmed with work stress while having too many hobbies means that your productivity has competition. The middle point is what interests recruiters.

  • Are you an exciting individual? Our hobbies outside of work reveal a great deal of who we are. If you return home from work, switch on the TV and watch Netflix shows until the following day when you have to go back to work, it indicates that you will not bring excitement or fresh ideas to the table. On the contrary, having interests and hobbies shows a character with ambition and passion for life.

  • Do you have things in common? Don’t forget that hiring managers are people as well. Personal preference plays a significant role as they’ll not easily vouch for someone they don’t personally like. Having common touchpoints with the recruiter can help you win them over and land your dream job.

  • Do you have good filters? Sometimes, an interviewer will ask the “What do you do for fun?” question simply to test your ability to censor yourself when it’s necessary. For example, some more private hobbies or habits are not to be discussed in an official interview. Instead, filtering your answers is what the hiring manager might be looking for.

  • Small talk. Last but not least, sometimes the recruiter might simply be looking to create some small talk to lighten things up and let you answer less demanding questions. So, for example, instead of answering “What are your career aspirations?”, you get to talk about your hobbies.

So, what are some stellar examples of hobbies to mention? Let’s move on to some “What do you do for fun” examples!

How to impactfully answer questions about your hobbies and interests

When you’re getting ready for your interview, you don’t need to prepare a complete answer to the “What do you do for fun” question. In fact, if you do, it might have the opposite results. Keep in mind that you’re searching for common ground with your interviewer so that they understand what you value as an individual. Don’t overdo it with fancy interests and formalities. Be authentic and relatable.

Here are some top tips on how to ace the “What do you do for fun” interview question:

  • Choose your hobbies wisely. Make a list of your hobbies; list anything you do in your spare time and find enjoyable. They could range from cooking to gardening to bungee-jumping. Now, take a look. Which of the hobbies you listed make you seem like the best candidate? Which of those match the job description’s skills and key responsibilities? Those are the ones you should go for.

  • Describe how your hobbies make you unique. Presenting funny answers to hobbies and interests can make you memorable. For example, describing a magic, live-action, or roleplaying hobby could set you apart in the hiring manager’s eyes. However, every hobby has something to offer as long as you wrap it up in the right story.

  • Tie your hobbies with job values. List all the skills and abilities your hobbies allow you to build. Then connect those skills to the job description’s requirements to stand out. For example, if you enjoy chess, you might point out how it has helped you gain strategic and disciplined thinking.

  • Invest in good storytelling. Boil everything together into a good story or anecdote. Recruiters love it when you naturally present your skills through a great example or story. Then, sum it up by explaining how it all contributes to being an excellent candidate for the position.

Another stellar practice you can use is the STAR/CAR interview method for storytelling. The STAR method stands for (S)ituation, (T)ask, (A)ction, (R)esult, and it boils down to answering interview questions by demonstrating past work experiences and results. It’s also named CAR method, with the acronym standing for (C)ontext, (A)ction, (R)esult. Let’s take a closer look:

  • Situation. Set up the scene. Describe who was involved and what the problem was. Make the story relevant to the context of your interview.

  • Task. Describe your responsibilities or what initiatives you took to resolve the company’s problem.

  • Action. This is the crucial part of your story. Highlight what strategy you followed and why, your way of thinking, and your overall approach.

  • Result. Clearly state how your actions led to a positive outcome that left things better than you found them. Sum it up with what lessons you learned and what experiences you got since then, and you’re good to go.

A career mentor is the fastest way to learn how to incorporate efficient storytelling into your interview. MentorCruise’s experienced career leaders will provide you with all the resources to nail your next interview.

Sample interview answers that can help you win the job

Okay! Let’s move on to some juicy “What do you like to do for fun” examples that can help you craft your own answer:

Example 1: Customer Relationships Position

I love playing with my children in my spare time. I value human relations so much that I’m constantly aware of keeping a good work-life balance. Playing with my children allows me to relax around loved ones, just having fun, laughing, and being in the moment. For instance, as my kids love science, our weekend activities often consist of doing fun scientific activities for kids, such as building a volcano using paper mâché, baking soda and vinegar. For me, spending time with children is the ultimate form of practicing communication and empathy.

Example 2: Copywriter

For fun, I like to read books! Books allow me to immerse myself into new worlds and discover different characters and stories. In addition, they help me unwind from day-to-day responsibilities and broaden my creative thinking. What’s more, I’m currently learning French, so I’ve been reading most of my books in French to practice the language. So why not combine learning with fun?

Example 3: PR Manager

I adore cooking in my free time! I love mixing things up and trying new tastes that might be controversial. In fact, cooking has served me well in my past position. The company was facing reputation issues due to a social media trend tarnishing its otherwise excellent products and services. As the former PR manager of the company, there was nothing left to do but put some ingredients in the casserole!

With my initiative, we organized a social media campaign that invited users to use the specific hashtag for the company publicly online. For every hashtag used, we donated food to the homeless. As a result, the company’s name was connected to charitable actions, and the brand reputation was back to positive. In fact, we saw our sales skyrocket that semester. So, I’d say that with the right recipe, everything is possible!

Drawing inspiration from these “What do you do for fun” job interview answers, you’ll be able to create something that truly sets you apart. Just remember; make it seem effortless and spontaneous.

Get ready for your next interview with MentorCruise!

Interviews are an excellent way of showcasing the value you could bring to a company. However, the competition is higher than ever, so you’ll be needing to demonstrate an overall stellar presence that will make hiring managers want to call you back.

The only way to do that is by spending time preparing. And the best way to prepare is by asking your questions to a career mentor. Book an interview coaching session with MentorCruise today and land your dream job in a matter of minutes!

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