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Questions To Expect
- Tell me about a time at work when you made a special effort to understand the feelings of another person.
- Tell me about a highly stressful work situation when you had to keep a positive attitude.
- Getting the job done sometimes requires unusual persistence or dedication, especially when faced with obstacles or distractions. Tell me about a time when you had to be very persistent in order to reach your goals.
- Describe the hardest job you have ever done that you enjoyed and tell me what you enjoyed about it.
- Tell me about a recent work experience that required a lot of extra effort or time on your part.
- Give me an example of a time when you used a systematic process to define your work objectives. What types of system did you use? What payoff did you get from the process?
- Tell me about the most important time in your work history when you prioritized your goals successfully.
- Describe how you achieved a goal you set for yourself in the past, then tell me how you plan to achieve a current goal.
- Sometimes in business we have to take calculated chances in order to achieve goals. Tell me about a recent business situation when you needed to take a chance.
- Getting a group of people to head in the same direction is sometimes difficult. Please tell me about a time when you were very challenged in getting a group decision or commitment.
- What was the toughest problem you ever had to solve? How did you solve it?
- Tell me about a recent time at work when you had to study and absorb a good bit of technical information. What did you study? What were your sources of information? When did you study? Were you tested or evaluated on your level of understanding? How well did you do? What is the most significant thing that you learned from this study effort?
- Please describe a couple of long-term strategies that you devised and implemented.
- Some business ideas come from an individual’s ability to challenge the thinking of others. Tell me about a time when you were successful in challenging the ideas of a high powered customer, a committee or perhaps a board of directors.
- Even though a situation may be complex, sometimes the best solution involves the use of common sense. Tell me about a business problem that you solved with common sense.
- Tell me about a time when you showed your skill at recognizing the hidden interests or hidden agendas of others.
- What was the most difficult decision you ever had to make? How did you arrive at your decision and how long did it take?
- Tell me about a work situation when you had to stand-up for a decision you made even though it was unpopular.
- Tell me about a recent situation when you had to take action without all the facts.
- Describe a setback you experienced and how you responded.
- Tell me about a time at work when another person really tried your patience. What happened, who was involved and how did you get over it?
- From time-to-time, we all face work situations that put us under a lot of stress. Tell me about a recent work example when you were faced with heavy pressure.
- Almost everybody is unfairly criticized on the job, either by a boss or by a co-worker. Please tell me about a time when you were in that situation.
- Describe your most successful endeavor and tell me how you achieved it.
- Tell me about some work achievements of which you are particularly proud.
- What was the most difficult task you were given and what did you do to be successful?
- Give me an example of a time when you had to train yourself to control your actions or conduct.
Passion for Achievement
- Tell me about a situation when others commented about your boundless enthusiasm.
- Tell me about a recent time at work when you had to keep a lot of balls in the air.
- Tell me about a time at work when you made a special effort to treat another person in a way that showed your respect for the other.
- Tell me about a time when you had to be particularly assertive when interacting with others.
- Tell me about a time when your ability to reward and encourage others created positive motivation.
- Instead of using authority to influence another individual, sometimes it’s better to lead by example. Describe a work situation when you served as a role model to others.
Organization & Planning Skills
- Give me a summary of the systematic planning techniques you have used in your career. Describe how you applied one of these techniques in a specific situation.
- Planning is often more than thinking, it is also doing. Tell me about what you have done with such tools as flow charts, checklists, and filing systems or anything else to help you plan.
- Give me an example of a time in which you were effective in doing away with “constant emergencies” and “surprises” in your work climate. How did your planning help you deal with the unexpected?
- Give me an example from your working history that demonstrates your ability to organize and maintain a system of records to facilitate your work.
- Time management has become a necessary factor in personal productivity. Give me an example of any time management skill you have learned and applied at work. What resulted from use of the skill?
Policy & Procedures
- Many positions have well-established, standard methods to help you do the job. Give me an example of a time when you found a systematic method for solving problems to be a good routine to follow. Were unusual risk levels involved?
- Select a job you had had and describe the paperwork you were required to complete. What specific things did you do to ensure your accuracy?
- Tell me about your experiences in logging (documenting) your work activities in a written form. Be specific.
Commitment to Task
- Getting the job done may necessitate unusual persistence or dedication to results, especially when faced with obstacles or distractions. Tell me about a time in which you were able to be very persistent in order to reach goals. Be specific.
Decision Making & Problem Solving
- Many situations at work will require fast thinking and speed in making decisions. Give me an example of a situation in which you were especially skillful in making a decision quickly.
- When we get emotionally involved in a problem situation, it is often very difficult to be objective. Tell me about a time when you were proud of your ability to be objective even though you were emotional about a problem situation.
- Good problem solving often includes a careful review of the facts and weighing of options before making a decision. Give me an example of how you reached a practical business decision by an organized review of the facts and weighing of options.
- Describe a time when you communicated something unpleasant or difficult to say to your manager or work team. How did you assert yourself?
- Describe a time when you had to sell an idea to your boss, authority or technical expert.
Tolerance of Ambiguity
- When have you been most proud of your ability to wait for important information before taking action in solving a problem? How did the waiting affect you?
- Describe a time when you were proud of your ability to postpone your comments until you had all the facts necessary for a good response to a situation.
- Sooner or later we all have to deal with arrogant, dogmatic people. Tell me about a time when you were able to be flexible with this type of person.
- Describe a time when you were able to adapt to a person from a background or culture that was different from yours?
- It is sometimes very difficult to accommodate the wishes of another person without going so far that we lose our own personhood. Tell me about a time when you tried hard to “be nice” but had to back off to avoid loss of self-esteem.
- Please tell me about some powerful people that you’ve dealt with in your work during the last several years.
- From time-to-time, we all encounter difficult people at work. Tell me about a recent situation when you encountered someone with an especially large ego.
- Give me an example of a time when another person really tried your patience. Specifically, talk about a time when you were able to speak respectfully even when you were angry or frustrated.
- Tell me about a time when you had to cope with strict deadlines or time demands. Give me an example.
- Tell me about a high stress situation when it was desirable for you to keep a positive attitude. What happened?
- Tell me about a time when your language and speaking skills really worked for you on the job. Feel free to use either a supervisory or non-supervisory example.
- This job will require you to spend a large amount of time talking to others. When have you had to work in this kind of situation and how did it affect you?
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- In some jobs it is necessary to document work thoroughly, in writing. For example, documentation might be necessary to prove you did your job correctly or to train another person to do it. Give me an example of your experiences in this area.