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Top 5 Behavioral Interview Questions Commonly Asked at the Google Interview

Posted on 
November 9, 2021
Utkarsh Sahu
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About The Author!
Utkarsh Sahu
Utkarsh Sahu
Director of Category Management at Interview Kickstart || IIM Bangalore || NITW

Google interview questions for software engineers are broadly categorized as coding questions, design questions, and behavioral questions. Google interview questions on coding focus on core coding concepts such as data structures and algorithms. Google interview questions on design focus on product and systems design principles and applications. These are both hard technical skills. Google behavioral interview questions, on the other hand, focus on soft skills to assess interpersonal traits and cultural and organizational fit.

Behavioral interview questions, a common part of technical interviews at FAANG+ companies, are particularly emphasized as part of Google’s hiring process. It’s not uncommon for candidates with great technical skills to be rejected based on their behavioral interview.

All software engineering candidates at Google go through a behavioral interview. However, Google behavioral questions are assigned more weightage for senior-level software engineer interviews than interviews for junior and mid-level roles, whereas Google interview questions focus more on coding.

If you are preparing for a tech interview, check out our technical interview checklist, interview questions page, and salary negotiation e-book to get interview-ready!

Having trained over 14,000 software engineers, we know what it takes to crack the toughest tech interviews. Our alums consistently land offers from FAANG+ companies. The highest ever offer received by an IK alum is a whopping $1.267 Million!

At IK, you get the unique opportunity to learn from expert instructors who are hiring managers and tech leads at Google, Facebook, Apple, and other top Silicon Valley tech companies.

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Here’s what we’ll cover in this article:

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Top 5 Google Behavioral Interview Questions 

Here are the top 5 Google interview questions that assess behavioral skills at Google interviews. We also suggest ways to answer these questions.

Q1. Why do you want to work at Google?

This question aims to determine your motivations to work at Google vis-a-vis its competitors and whether you’re interested in the role from a long-term perspective or only for financial reasons. 

To answer this question, showcase your knowledge about the company, its products, the market it operates in, and its work culture. Draw a link between your skills and experience and the kind of work Google does. Indicate two or three distinct career goals you hope to achieve by working with Google. 

Q2. Explain how you would improve your favorite Google product.

This question aims to find out your knowledge about Google’s products, product design skills, and analytical and communication skills.

To answer this question, talk about a few Google products that interest you, zeroing on the one you will elaborate on. Highlight design, features, benefits, and technologies used in your chosen product. Also, talk about its competitive advantages. 

Move on to describing improvements to the product that can help fulfill a business or market objective and the benefits from the improvement. Present your answer in a logical and organized manner. 

Q3. Who are Google’s top competitors? How does Google stand in comparison to them?

This question aims to gauge your understanding of Google’s operating market and competition. 

To answer this question, mention Google’s top competitors and key areas that they offer competition in. Talk about why Google has a competitive advantage over these players. Also, talk about areas in which Google may face competition and potential business opportunities based on current market trends or evolving technologies. 

Try to portray the value you can add to the company. Highlight in-demand skills you may possess that Google’s competitors are also hiring for and how you can contribute to Google’s success. 

Q4. What do you know about the history of Google? 

This question aims to understand your knowledge of the company, how passionate you are about its products, and whether you understand its business values and direction.

Talk about key milestones of Google’s existence, including key persons responsible for 

its success, past, and present. Talk about Google’s vision and mission, the impact Google’s products have made, and the key technologies that it uses. Highlight the evolution of Google’s work culture and core beliefs that define the company. 

Talk about how Google inspires you and why you believe your career aspirations and personality is a fit for the company. 

Q5. How would you convince a client to transition to our cloud solutions?

This question aims to gauge your tech skills, problem-solving, communication, and negotiation skills.

Draw on a similar experience if possible. Alternatively, describe the problem to be resolved. Showcase an understanding of client requirements, i.e., why the client would need this solution. Talk about the product features and benefits that will meet the client’s needs. Also, talk about the competitive advantages of the product. 

Explain the means and mode of communication and the resources you will use to engage with the client and convey your message, including follow-up questions. 

Sample Google Interview Questions

Below is a list of commonly asked Google interview questions, including Google Behavioral questions. 

1. Do you think Google should charge Gmail users? 

2. Should Google charge for its productivity apps?

3. What world problem would you solve if given a billion dollars?

4. What is your view on the future of digital marketing?

5. Describe Adwords to someone with no knowledge of online advertising.

6. What about the Google search page stands out to you?

7. Explain YouTube’s business model. How would you improve it?

8. How would you increase Gmail’s user base?

Take a look at the Facebook Behavioral Interview Questions too.  

9. Tell us about an accomplishment you’re particularly proud of and why.

10. What are three things you consider essential to maintaining a work-life balance?

11. Describe a time you took on a project/risk and failed.

Recommended reading: Software Engineer Job Levels at Google

12. What impact will you have on your team after you join Google?

13. Have you ever faced a conflict while working in a team? How did you deal with it?

14. Why do you want to leave your current organization?

Prepare for your Google Interview with a 4-Week Study Plan here!

15. Tell me about yourself

This is one of the most commonly asked behavioral interview questions, yet many people don’t answer it well. The key to answering this question is to talk about your background, covering experience relevant to the job. 

Your pace and tone should be balanced and your answer concise. Want to know what that sounds like? Check out our video on FAANG Engineering Manager Mock Interview with two experienced hiring managers.

For more insights into the Google interview process, technical questions, and more, read Google Interview Guide and Google Interview Questions.

How to Answer Google Behavioral Interview Questions

Google behavioral interview questions assess your interpersonal skills, personality traits, and cultural and organizational fit. These characteristics are uncovered through your responses to situational questions. 

An effective way to answer Google interview questions to showcase soft skills is to use the STAR method. STAR stands for Situation, Tasks, Actions, Results. 

  • Situation: Provide context by describing the situation or problem
  • Tasks: Outline tasks to respond to or solve it
  • Actions: Explain actions executed to this effect
  • Results: Highlight (quantified and positive) results or outcomes.

Try to draw on past experiences, where possible, to show real-life experience and proven skills with similar situations or circumstances.

FAQs on Behavioral Interview Questions Commonly Asked at the Google Interview

Q1. What are some Google interview questions for behavioral interviews?

Google behavioral interview questions for software engineers usually center on past projects, understanding of Googleyness and work culture, your motivation to work at Google, and key interpersonal skills like communication, problem-solving, creativity, leadership, etc. 

Q2. What coding concepts do you need to know to answer Google interview questions?

Coding is a crucial part of Google technical interviews. To answer Google interview questions on coding concepts, you should be prepared on key data structure and algorithm topics — arrays, strings, linked lists, recursion, hash tables, sort, trees, graphs, greedy algorithms, and dynamic programming. 

Q3. How do I prepare to answer Google behavioral interview questions?

The STAR (Situation, Task, Action, Result) approach effectively answers Google behavioral questions. Provide context by describing the situation or problem, outline tasks to respond to or solve it, explain actions executed to this effect, and highlight (quantified and positive) results or outcomes of this process.

Q4. Are Google interview questions hard?

The proper interview prep can help you crack even the most challenging technical interviews. To answer Google interview questions on coding, you should focus on data structures, algorithms, and system design. To answer Google behavioral questions, you should focus on interpersonal skills such as communication, problem-solving, project management, etc.

Q5. Does Google ask behavioral questions?

Yes, Google interview questions feature coding and design questions and Google behavioral interview questions that focus on company-specific interpersonal skills and whether you’re a good fit for the organization.

Ready to Nail Your Next Tech Interview?

Whether you’re a Coding Engineer gunning for Software Developer or Software Engineer roles, a Tech Lead, or you’re targeting management positions at top companies, IK offers courses specifically designed for your needs to help you with your technical interview preparation.

To learn more, sign up for our FREE webinar. 

As pioneers in the field of technical interview preparation, we have trained thousands of software engineers to crack the most challenging coding interviews and land jobs at their dream companies, such as Google, Facebook, Apple, Netflix, Amazon, and more!

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Last updated on: 
September 22, 2023

Utkarsh Sahu

Director, Category Management @ Interview Kickstart || IIM Bangalore || NITW.

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