Check out our guide on how to answer behavioral interview questions, and then use this list as a "study guide" of sorts to make sure you are as prepared as possible!

Organizational
Describe a time when you had to make a difficult choice between your personal and professional life.
Give me an example of a project that best describes your organizational skills.
How do you decide what gets top priority when scheduling your time?
What do you do when your schedule is suddenly interrupted? Give an example.

Performance Management
Give an example of a time when you helped a staff member accept change and make the necessary adjustments to move forward. What were the change/transition skills that you used.
Give an example of how you have been successful at empowering either a person or a group of people into accomplishing a task.
How do you handle a subordinate whose work is not up to expectations?
How do you coach a subordinate to develop a new skill?
How do you handle performance reviews? Tell me about a difficult one.
How often do you discuss a subordinate's performance with him/her? Give an example.
Tell us about a specific development plan that you created and carried out with one or more of your employees. What was the specific situation? What were the components of the development plan? What was the outcome?
Tell us about a time when you had to take disciplinary action with someone you supervised.
Tell us about a time when you had to tell a staff member that you were dissatisfied with his or her work.
Tell us about a time when you had to use your authority to get something done. Where there any negative consequences?
There are times when people need extra help. Give an example of when you were able to provide that support to a person with whom you worked.
What have you done to develop the skills of your staff?
When do you give positive feedback to people? Tell me about the last time you did. Give an example of how you handle the need for constructive criticism with a subordinate or peer.

Personal Effectiveness
Give an example of a situation where others were intense but you were able to maintain your composure.
It is important to maintain a positive attitude at work when you have other things on your mind. Give a specific example of when you were able to do that.
Keeping others informed of your progress/actions helps them fell comfortable. Tell your methods for keeping your supervisor advised of the status on projects.
Tell us about a recent job or experience that you would describe as a real learning experience? What did you learn from the job or experience?
Tell us about a time when you took responsibility for an error and were held personally accountable.
Tell us about a time when your supervisor criticized your work. How did you respond?
Tell us about some demanding situations in which you managed to remain calm and composed.
There are times when we are placed under extreme pressure on the job. Tell about a time when you were under such pressure and how you handled it.
What have you done to further your own professional development in the past 5 years.
When you have been made aware of, or have discovered for yourself, a problem in your work performance, what was your course of action? Can you give an example?

Persuasion
Describe a situation in which you were able to positively influence the actions of others in a desired direction.
Describe a situation where you were able to use persuasion to successfully convince someone to see things your way.
Describe a time when you were able to convince a skeptical or resistant customer to purchase a project or utilize your services.
Have you ever had to persuade a group to accept a proposal or idea? How did you go about doing it? What was the result?
Have you ever had to persuade a peer or manager to accept an idea that you knew they would not like? Describe the resistance you met and how you overcame it.
How do you get a peer or colleague to accept one of your ideas?
In selling an idea, it is sometimes useful to use metaphors, analogies, or stories to make your point. Give a recent example of when you were able to successfully do that.
Tell us about a time when you had to convince someone in authority about your ideas. How did it work out?
Tell us about a time when you used facts and reason to persuade someone to accept your recommendation.
Tell us about a time when you used your leadership ability to gain support for what initially had strong opposition.
Tell us about a time when you were able to successfully influence another person.

Planning and Organization
Describe how you develop a project team's goals and project plan?
How do you schedule your time? Set priorities? How do you handle doing twenty things at once?
What do you do when your time schedule or project plan is upset by unforeseen circumstances? Give an example.
What have you done in order to be effective with your organization and planning?

Presentation
How do you prepare for a presentation to a group of technical experts in your field?
How would you describe your presentation style?
Tell us about the most effective presentation you have made. What was the topic? What made it difficult? How did you handle it?
What kinds of oral presentations have you made? How did you prepare for them? What challenges did you have?

Problem Solving
Describe the most difficult working relationship you've had with an individual. What specific actions did you take to improve the relationship? What was the outcome?
Give me an example of a situation where you had difficulties with a team member. What, if anything, did you do to resolve the difficulties?

Problems Solving
Have you ever been caught unaware by a problem or obstacles that you had not foreseen? What happened?
Tell us about a time when you did something completely different from the plan and/or assignment. Why? What happened?
What are some of the problems you have faced; such as between business development and project leaders, between one department and another, between you and your peers? How did you recognize that they were there?
When was the last time something came up in a meeting that was not covered in the plan? What did you do? What were the results of your judgment?

Problem Resolution
Describe a situation where you had a conflict with another individual, and how you dealt with it. What was the outcome? How do you feel about it?
Describe a time in which you were faced with problems or stresses which tested your coping skills. What did you do?
Describe a time when you facilitated a creative solution to a problem between two employees.
Give a specific example of a time when you used good judgment and logic in solving a problem.
Give an example of a problem which you faced on any job that you have had and tell how you went about solving it.
Give an example of when you "went to the source" to address a conflict. Do you feel trust levels were improved as a result?
Problems occur in almost all work relationships. Describe a time when you had to cope with the resentment or hostility of a subordinate or co-worker.
Some problems require developing a unique approach. Tell about a time when you were able to develop a different problem-solving approach.
Sometimes the only way to resolve a defense or conflict is through negotiation and compromise. Tell about a time when you were able to resolve a difficult situation by finding some common ground.
Sometimes we need to remain calm on the outside when we are really upset on the inside. Give an example of a time that this happened to you.
Tell us about a recent success you had with an especially difficult employee/co-worker.
Tell us about a situation in which you had to separate the person from the issue when working to resolve issues.
Tell us about a time when you identified a potential problem and resolved the situation before it became serious.
There is more than one way to solve a problem. Give an example from your recent work experience that would illustrate this.

Project Management
Tell us about a time when you influenced the outcome of a project by taking a leadership role.
Using a specific example of a project, tell how you kept those involved informed of the progress.

Relate Well
Describe a situation where you had to use conflict management skills.
Describe a situation where you had to use confrontation skills.
Give me an example of a time when a company policy or action hurt people. What, if anything, did you do to mitigate the negative consequences to people?
How do you typically deal with conflict? Can you give me an example?
Tell us about a time when you were forced to make an unpopular decision.
What would your co-workers (or staff) stay is the most frustrating thing about your communications with them?

Removing Obstacles
Have you ever dealt with a situation where communications were poor? Where there was a lack of cooperation? Lack of trust? How did you handle these situations?
What do you do when a subordinate comes to you with a challenge?
What have you done to help your subordinates to be more productive?
What have you done to make sure that your subordinates can be productive? Give an example.

Resolving Conflict
Have you ever been in a situation where you had to settle an argument between two friends (or people you knew)? What did you do? What was the result?
Have you ever had to settle conflict between two people on the job? What was the situation and what did you do?
Tell us about a time when you had to help two peers settle a dispute. How did you go about identifying the issues? What did you do? What was the result?

Resource Management
Tell us about a time when you organized or planned an event that was very successful.

Sales
Describe how you prepare for a sales call for a new client.
How do you go about making cold calls?
How have your sales skills improved over the past three years.
Tell us about your most difficult sales experience.
Tell us about your sales volume over the past three years. What have you done to influence it?

Scheduling
Describe the most difficult scheduling problem you have faced.
How did you assign priorities to jobs?
How did you go about making job assignments?
When all have been over-loaded, how do your people meet job assignments?

Self Assessment
Can you recall a time when you were less than pleased with your performance?
Describe a situation in which you were able to use persuasion to successfully convince someone to see things your way.
Give me a specific occasion in which you conformed to a policy with which you did not agree.
Give me an example of an important goal that you h ad set in the past and tell me about your success in reaching it.
If there were one area you've always wanted to improve upon, what would that be?
In what ways are you trying to improve yourself?
Tell us about a time when you had to go above and beyond the call of duty in order to get a job done.
What do you consider to be your professional strengths? Give me a specific example using this attribute in the workplace.
What goal have you set for yourself that you have successfully achieved?
What was the most useful criticism you ever received?

Selecting and Developing People
How do you coach an employee in completing a new assignment?
What have you done to develop your subordinates? Give an example.
What have you done to improve the skills of your subordinates?
What was your biggest mistake in hiring someone? What happened? How did you deal with the situation?
What was your biggest success in hiring someone? What did you do?

Setting Goals
Did you have a strategic plan? How was it developed? How did you communicate it to the rest of your staff?
How do you communicate goals to subordinates? Give an example.
How do you involve people in developing your unit's goals? Give an example.
What company plans have you developed? Which ones have you reached? How did you reach them? Which have you missed? Why did you miss them?
What goals did you miss? Why did you miss them?
What goals have you met? What did you do to meet them?
What were your annual goals at your most current employer? How did you develop these goals?
What were your long-range plans at your most recent employer? What was our role in developing them?

Setting Performance Standards
How do you go about setting goals with subordinates? How do you involve them in this process?
How do you let subordinates know what you expect of them?
What performance standards do you have for your unit? How have you communicated them to your subordinates?

Setting Priorities
Have you ever been overloaded with work? How do you keep track of work so that it gets done on time?
How do you manage your time?
How do you schedule your time?
When given an important assignment, how do you approach it?

Sound Judgment
Describe a situation when you had to exercise a significant amount of self-control.
Give me an example of a time in which you had to be relatively quick in coming to a decision.
Give me an example of when you were able to meet the personal and professional demands in your life yet still maintained a healthy balance.
Give me an example of when you were responsible for an error or mistake. What was the outcome? What, if anything, would you do differently?
If you were interviewing for this position what would you be looking for in the applicants?
We work with a great deal of confidential information. Describe how you would have handled sensitive information in a past work experience. What strategies would you utilize to maintain confidentiality when pressured by others?
When have you had to produce results without sufficient guidelines? Give an example.

Strategic Planning
Describe what steps/methods you have used to define/identify a vision for your unit/position.
How do you see your job relating to the overall goals of the organization?
In your current or former position, what were your long and short-term goals?
Tell us about a time when you anticipated the future and made changes to current responsibilities/operations to meet future needs.

Stress Management
How did you react when faced with constant time pressure? Give an example.
People react differently when job demands are constantly changing; how do you react?
What kind of events cause you stress on the job?
What was the most stressful situation you have faced? How did you deal with it?

Teamwork
Describe a situation in which you had to arrive at a compromise or help others to compromise. What was your role? What steps did you take? What was the end result?
Describe a team experience you found disappointing. What would you have done to prevent this?
Describe a team experience you found rewarding.
Describe the types of teams you've been involved with. What were your roles?
Describe your leadership style and give an example of a situation when you successfully led a group.
Give an example of how you have been successful at empowering a group of people in accomplishing a task.
Give an example of how you worked effectively with people to accomplish an important result.
Have you ever been a project leader? Give examples of problems you experienced and how you reacted.
Have you ever been in a position where you had to lead a group of peers? How did you handle it?
Have you ever participated in a task group? What was your role? How did you contribute?
Please give your best example of working cooperatively as a team member to accomplish an important goal. What was the goal or objective? To what extent did you interact with others on this project?
Some people work best as part of a group - others prefer the role of individual contributor. How would you describe yourself? Give an example of a situation where you felt you were most effective.
Tell us about a time that you had to work on a team that did not get along. What happened? What role did you take? What was the result?
Tell us about a work experience where you had to work closely with others. How did it go? How did you overcome any difficulties?
Tell us about the most difficult challenge you faced in trying to work cooperatively with someone who did not share the same ideas? What was your role in achieving the work objective?
Tell us about the most difficult situation you have had when leading a team. What happened and what did you do? Was it successful? Emphasize the "single" most important thing you did?
Tell us about the most effective contribution you have made as part of a task group or special project team.
Think about the times you have been a team leader. What could you have done to be more effective?
What is the difficult part of being a member, not leader, of a team? How did you handle this?
What role have you typically played as a member of a team? How did you interact with other members of the team?
When is the last time you had a disagreement with a peer? How did you resolve the situation?
When working on a team project have you ever had an experience where there was strong disagreement among team members? What did you do?

Time Management Schedule
Describe a situation that required you to do a number of things at the same time. How did you handle it? What was the result?
How do you determine priorities in scheduling your time? Give an example.
How do you typically plan your day to manage your time effectively?
Of your current assignments, which do you consider to have required the greatest amount of effort with regard to planning/organization? How have you accomplished this assignment? How would you asses your effectiveness?

Toughness
On many occasions, managers have to make tough decisions. What was the most difficult one you have had to make?
Tell us about setbacks you have faced. How did you deal with them?
What has been your major work related disappointment? What happened and what did you do?
What is the most competitive situation you have experienced? How did you handle it? What was the result?
What was your major disappointment?

Variety
How many projects do you work on at once? Please describe.
When was the last time you made a key decision on the spur of the moment? What was the reason and result?
When was the last time you were in a crises? What was the situation? How did you react?
Which of your jobs had the most rapid change? How did you feel about it?

Values Diversity
Give a specific example of how you have helped create an environment where differences are valued, encouraged and supported.
Tell us about a time that you successfully adapted to a culturally different environment.
Tell us about a time when you had to adapt to a wide variety of people by accepting/understanding their perspective.
Tell us about a time when you made an intentional effort to get to know someone from another culture.
What have you done to further your knowledge/understanding about diversity? How have you demonstrated your learning?
What have you done to support diversity in your unit?
What measures have you taken to make someone feel comfortable in an environment that was obviously uncomfortable with his or her presence?

by Alex Rudloff

2 comments:

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