Interview Successfully with the SOAR Framework

Ace your Interview

I’ve already covered the importance of having a resume that communicates your top professional accomplishments. When you do, you’re positioned to interview successfully. You’ve created a roadmap of questions for the interviewer to ask:


“Oh wow, I see you lead a team of 5 at your last job to design and launch FancyWidget, and it was the most profitable new product of the year! Tell me more about that.”


The recruiter or hiring manager is going to tee you up perfectly and it’s up to you to knock it out of the part. Telling an engaging story takes practice, but you can fast-track it through an effective framework.


The #1 technique to master is the SOAR framework:


-Objective and Obstacles




This acronym is a framework for answering behavioral questions through engaging storytelling, a key to interview successfully.



This is where you set the scene. You’re telling a story and it pays to know your audience. What are the relevant details that make the story pop and what does your audience care about? Consider similar situations your employer finds themselves in today. They’re hiring for this role because they need someone to be the solution to a challenge, so they’ll imagine you as the solution if you solved a similar problem in the past.


“Our 2018 was plagued with unsuccessful product launches. We were way off on the demand and our go-to-market strategy was too rigid, which made changes too costly, so our launches fell short of our goals.”


Objective and Obstacles

What was your objective and what was in the way? Again, you want this to align with what your potential employer is hiring you to do. Make sure your role in this is clear.


“Doing more of the same was a recipe for failure, but it’s not easy to make changes in a large organization. As a Product Director accountable for successful launches, I needed to convince my VP of what I knew we needed- more agile software and a different set of market indicators to guide the product.”



What action did you take? You had to bust your butt to get this result so make sure they understand what it took. Elaborate on the combination of hard work and skill it took to make this happen.


“So I conducted market research and contracted with a data scientist to identify the most accurate market indicators of the last 5 years, then I demoed 5 different tools to see which software gave us the flexibility we needed. I pitched my VP and she gave me the go-ahead to retrain my team, then we got to work.”



Refer back to the result on your resume and expand on it. This is where you can talk about the impact of that result on the company, team members, etc. 


“The team was excited about the new challenge and I was right about the new market indicators. Our product ended up 8x more profitable than any other product that year. While I led the effort I can’t take all the credit- my VP went out on a limb for me and my team executed flawlessly. I’m really proud of what we accomplished.”


Use our Audit Tool to Interview Successfully

Use this framework and you’ll be well ahead of your peers.


Want more guidance? Try our free Interview Audit Tool!


Record your response and one of our master interview coaches will send you custom feedback. It’s one step in the right direction to interview successfully.

Scott Swedberg

Scott Swedberg

Scott is Founder & CEO. A former LinkedIn employee, recruiter, and hiring manager, he's known for going out of his way to offer strategic support to anyone he meets.

Sign up for our Newsletter