Interview questions at Mindshare

We analyzed 200 interview reviews for Mindshare from various job sites, social network groups and forums.

Here are the most frequent job interview questions asked by HR managers during initial phone or onsite interviews. This list does not include technical or factual questions.

16 frequent non-technical questions at Mindshare:

What is the biggest lesson you've learned from a mistake you made?
Tell me about a time when you had to work with a difficult or disruptive person. It may be a client, manager, or coworker. How did you handle the situation? What was the outcome?
Why did you leave your last job?
Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
What is your greatest weakness?
Tell me about yourself
Tell me about a time you had a conflict at work. How did you handle it? What have you learned?
Describe a time when you led by example
Why were you successful in your last role? Give a supporting example
Why and how did you choose your career?
What negative thing would your last boss say about you?
What did you do in your last role when your workload was enormous?
What challenges are you looking for in this position?
Tell me about your greatest professional accomplishment
Tell me about a time you had to raise an uncomfortable issue with your manager
Tell me about a time when you had multiple competing deadlines and how you managed them

According to our research, hiring managers at Mindshare ask soft skills interview questions 55% more than at other companies:

Mindshare interview question statistics

1. What is the biggest lesson you've learned from a mistake you made?top question

How to answer

It’s important to know how to answer a job interview question about mistakes.

They ask questions like this to learn how you handle challenges.
They also want to determine your weaknesses, and decide if you have what it takes to do the job well.

It’s a chance for the interviewer to see that you can learn from your mistakes and use the experience to get better.

  1. About Yourself

    Do your best to tell a positive story about how the mistake was made, how you dealt with it and what learned from it.

    We all make mistakes from time-to-time. Answering some of the following questions will help you understand your own view of dealing with mistakes and their consequences.

    For instance:

    • How do you use a mistake to improve your abilities?
    • Are you self-aware enough to acknowledge failure and weakness?
    • Do you take smart risks?
    • How do you view success, failure, and risk in general?
    • Do you take responsibility for past mistakes instead of putting the blame on others?
    • If the situation repeats, what would you do differently? What would you do again?
  2. About The Company

    Before the interview, look over the job listing, research the company.

    Try to think of a mistake you have made in the past that is not too closely related to the requirements of the job you are interviewing for. What kind of challenges might you face if you get the job here?

  3. About The Fit

    It’s your opportunity to emphasize the skills or qualities you gained from your past negative experience that are important for the job you’re interviewing for now.

    Put a positive spin on your response by defining the “mistake” as a “learning experience” that led to your increased competency in the workplace.

    Talk about a specific example of a time you made a mistake. Briefly explain what the mistake was; quickly switch over to what you learned, or how you improved, after making that mistake.

    You might also explain the steps you took to make sure that mistake never happened again. Say that something you may have struggled with in the past has actually now become one of your strengths.

    Pick a story that ends with a compelling example of a lesson learned. Tell your story using the STAR method.

Pro Tip

Make absolutely sure that the interviewer understands that you learned from the experience.

Never blame others for what you did (however, if you were part of a team failure, you could relate this experience, just be sure to own up to your part in it).

Always be accountable for what you could have done differently in the failure. Demonstrate that you’ve had the maturity to benefit from previous “lessons learned” and you can move on with increased wisdom and competency.

Statistics

This question is asked 11.4x more frequently at Mindshare than at other companies.

2. Tell me about a time when you had to work with a difficult or disruptive person. It may be a client, manager, or coworker. How did you handle the situation? What was the outcome?

How to answer

People skills are highly valued in a company. It is important to show how you can manage difficult personalities, especially if you are applying for a job that involves teamwork, or a lot of interactions with clients.

  1. About Yourself

    Look back on your experience. Have you worked with a difficult or disruptive person? Remember a few such situations and how you diffused them and turned things around. What are your approaches to resolving conflicting situations at work?

  2. About The Company

    • What have you found about the company and its culture?
    • What have you learned about how the employees value each other?
    • How do they treat their customers?
    • Do they have any specific standards and policies?
  3. About The Fit

    Using what you found about the company, choose one of your examples that fits best with the company standards and share your story.

    If it's a customer, how did you turn things around and made a customer happy?
    If it's a coworker, how did you diffuse a tense or difficult situation?

Pro Tip

Use the triple A of diffusing a difficult situation:

  1. Acknowledge - what the other person is feeling,
  2. Apologize - for the way the other person is feeling,
  3. Admit - that there was an issue that you are working on to get it resolved.

If it is a customer, it would add that extra touch if you "Ask" for the customer's contact information so you can update them of any progress on their issue.

Statistics

This question is asked 4.8x more frequently at Mindshare than at other companies.

3. Why did you leave your last job?

How to answer

This question may be a little touchy for some people, but it's a question asked by interviewers, to find out why you left, in order to better understand how you may or may not make a good fit with their company.

Remember, never speak ill of your old company (this will not go over well).

  1. About Yourself

    Most likely, there are three possible reasons you left or are leaving your last job:

    • You are looking for a career change
    • You are unhappy with your current employment
    • You were let go.

    Whatever the reason, it's best to always speak in a positive light.

  2. About The Company

    Based on your research about the company and the position, what do you like most about the company?

  3. About The Fit

    If you are looking for career advancement or a career change, you can be very upfront and honest. Be as enthusiastic as you can about the position.

    If you were unhappy with your previous job, focus on the positives. Talk about the ways that you will best fit in with the company, in the role for which you're applying.

    If you were let go, focus on the positive. Share your accomplishments at your previous employment.

Pro Tip

Whatever the reason you are looking for a new opportunity, always turn things around to show how you are the perfect fit for the job for which you are interviewing!

Statistics

This question is asked 62% more frequently at Mindshare than at other companies.

4. Where do you see yourself in 5 years?

How to answer

This question belongs to a family of behavioral, or even more precisely, reflective questions.

The interviewer wants to see whether you are reflective about yourself, whether you are ambitious and strive to grow as a professional, whether you like to learn and develop your skills.

They are also looking for your ambitions to fit the career path opportunities related to the position you are applying for.

  1. About Yourself

    Presumably, you are interested to grow professionally.

    Think about the possibilities that may lie ahead for you: take a personality test (I recommend 16Personalities which is based on Myers-Briggs test), research the internet on what career paths are possible with your skills and current job.

    What challenges do you like overcoming?

    For example, if you are applying for a software tester position, you may find it fascinating to master automated testing in full and eventually become a software engineer, or you may be a natural trainer and love coaching other people which may lead you to become a QA team or department lead, or you may be more interested in understanding business aspects of requirements which may logically lead you into a Business Analyst position.

    However, if you are happy just where you are and want to further your current skills, that is also fine as long as there is a growth path for you that can be imagined and described.

  2. About The Company

    Research the company to learn what career opportunities may be available in the department you are applying to, and what the trends are in the company in general.

    • Is the business expanding, are they opening new locations, or starting new projects?
    • Or are they heavily automating and cutting staff?

    Let’s say you are applying for a UX designer position for a brand-new product.

    In the future, if the product becomes a success - which is what the company hopes for - the company will hire more designers and you may become a lead designer, or you may become a product manager.

    On a side note: If you train your mind to be open to opportunities you will be amazed at how much this world has to offer to you!

  3. About The Fit

    And, of course, try to see where the perfect fit lies between your own potential and aspirations, and the company’s trends and hopes.

    However, beware of the risk of showing too much excitement for future opportunities compared to your attitude towards the current position.

    If you aren’t really excited about the position you are applying for and you demonstrate this lack of enthusiasm, the interviewer may conclude that you are not a good fit for the current position.

    Try to find a source of excitement in the current position as well, otherwise, you may be doing yourself a disservice by applying to a position you will find boring in 2-3 months.

Pro Tip

This question gives you a good opportunity to showcase your Key Selling Points (e.g. “As I am very good at delegating tasks, I can easily see myself leading a team of software testers in the future…”), and end your statement by asking about current initiatives and goals at the company.

It is generally NOT a good idea to say something like:

“Oh, I cannot imagine what happens to me tomorrow, let alone in 5 years”.

This will show you as a person who is unimaginative and not forward-thinking enough to grow with and be a good fit for the company.

Statistics

This question is asked 36% less frequently at Mindshare than at other companies.

5. What is your greatest weakness?

How to answer

This question ranks as the most challenging for many people. Fortunately, Mr. Simon is here to help!

Interviewers ask this question to gauge your level of self-awareness, your honesty and openness, and your capability for self-improvement.

  1. About Yourself

    No one is perfect and your interviewer doesn't expect you to be perfect either.

    While it is good to be honest and open, it will not help you to put yourself down.

    What's important is to find a weakness that you have overcome or something that is not related to the position for which you are applying.

    For example, one of our clients admitted that he is not very good at public speaking and that he has recently become a member of Toastmasters International to improve. What a respectful answer and approach, in my view!

  2. About The Company

    Research the company (website, social media, etc) to learn about the company culture.

    What personal and professional qualities do they value?

  3. About The Fit

    It is important that the weakness you decide to talk about is not one that will prevent you from performing the job for which you're applying.

    For example, if you're applying for a front-end developer position, do not talk about how you are struggling to understand HTML code.

Pro Tip

Use this question to sell yourself!

It's important to show how well you've overcome a weakness by motivating yourself and learning a new skill to grow professionally.

Statistics

This question is asked 22% less frequently at Mindshare than at other companies.

Take a quiz

Take a quick quiz and check if you’re ready to answer this question at your next job interview:

Which of the following would be the best answer:

ASometimes I just work too hard

BI have trouble saying “no” when a colleague asks for help and I have my own work to finish

CI am a perfectionist

DI cannot think of a single thing

6. Tell me about yourself

How to answer

This question may sound vague, but it actually requires a matter of fact, concise and relevant answer. Here’s how you can approach it.

  1. About Yourself

    What is your current occupation? Define yourself professionally in one statement.

    Pick 3 key skills that make you great at your work (your Key Selling Points). How have you applied these skills?

    Try to give some numbers to support your statement.

  2. About The Company

    Research the company.

    Based on what you know about the company and the job description, why are you interested in the position you are applying for?

  3. About The Fit

    • Based on your Key Selling Points and your knowledge about the company, why do you think you are a good fit for this position?
    • Can you support your statement with relevant examples from your past experiences?

    Try to be concise and stay within 1-2 minutes.

Pro Tip

You can also end with a question like:

Do you know what the current needs in the company/department are, where my skills and experience can help?"

That can help you learn more about the company and the job, turn the "interrogation" into a conversation and will allow you to relax some tension.

Read our blog post to learn more about how to answer this question.

Statistics

This question is asked 61% less frequently at Mindshare than at other companies.

Take a quiz

Take a quick quiz and check if you’re ready to answer this question at your next job interview:

Pick the best answer:

AMy name is Andrew Franklin, I am 28 years old, and I am looking for a job that pays well.

BHello, my name is Natalie Price. I have two children and I love playing billiards and travelling. I am 33 years old.

CHi Mr. Simon, my name is Stanley Clark and I am a certified Project Management professional known for completing projects on time and on budget. I am passionate about building agile work culture and delivering results.

DHi Mr. Simon, my name is Dorothy Hanson. I have previously worked as an accountant in retail, but currently I am trying to transition into the field of healthcare.

7. Tell me about a time you had a conflict at work. How did you handle it? What have you learned?

How to answer

Wherever you go, you will always have to work with people. This means that there is a greater chance for conflict to happen. This question helps the interviewer determine how well you would fit within the organization.

  1. About Yourself

    Think of the times you had to deal with conflict.

    • What were the different ways you were able to address the situation?
    • If you were the cause of the conflict, how did the other person talk you down from the conflict?
    • What were the key lessons you learned through your experience?
  2. About The Company

    Research the company and its culture.

    • What do they value?
    • Is there anything that you can find about how they deal with conflict resolution?

    Reading comments to their social media posts often prove helpful to see how they react to customers' complaints.

  3. About The Fit

    • What have you found out about the company’s culture and job description?
    • Are they looking for someone who can take charge and resolve conflict?

    Tell a story of how you addressed conflict and how it turned a negative into a positive. Try to conclude with your lessons learned or methodology for approaching conflicts - this will show the interviewer that you would be able to apply your methodology to future situations.

    Use the STAR method to frame your story.

Pro Tip

A key to addressing conflict is listening, communication and emotional intelligence. Highlight these skills.

If you're able to, turn the question around and ask the interviewer if they have experienced the same thing. This will start a conversation, which is the goal of an interview.

Statistics

This question is asked 3.5x more frequently at Mindshare than at other companies.

8. Describe a time when you led by example

How to answer

You might think that leadership questions are only relevant for management positions, but that’s a common misconception.

Most companies are looking for people with leadership potential even when hiring for entry-level positions. WOWing your interviewer on this question could open the doors for future leadership positions.

Fortunately, you have Mr. Simon at your side to help you achieve greatness!

  1. About Yourself

    • Are you an entry-level person or a seasoned pro?
    • Are you a manager, a team leader a member of a staff or a team?

    In all these scenarios, you probably had a chance at some point to show someone else how to do the job in the best possible way. In other words, you led by example. This is what you need to keep in mind in responding to the question.

    If you managed or led a team, you have already led by example and the the STAR method should be used to provide an answer.

    If you are at an entry-level, you should be still able to answer the question from your own experiences in school or at a summer job.

    Or you might start by thinking of the different leaders you've worked with or whose lives you have followed and identify what their best traits are. Then, identify those skills that you have that are relatable to the leaders you admire.

  2. About The Company

    Review the job description carefully and identify the type of leadership skills required for the role; customize your answer according to their requirements.

    Often, the desired leadership capabilities are spelled right out in the job description. One position may require managing a large team and another may be looking for someone who can take the initiative on special projects.

    Do your research!

  3. About The Fit

    Prepare an example that demonstrates your leadership ability; focus on a somewhat recent example.

    Some of your leadership skills might include taking initiative, communicating a vision, translating vision into reality, inspiring others, making tough decisions, motivating, empowering or developing others.

    The best stories include enough detail to be believable and memorable.

    Show how you were a leader in the situation and how it represents your overall leadership experience and/or potential. At the same time, you must make an effort to keep the story concise. Using the the STAR method will help you stay focused.

    Round out your answer with how your leadership skills would fit with the company culture.

Pro Tip

Start the conversation with the ideal qualities of a leader you admire and then segue into a standout experience that will make the interviewer remember you.

Statistics

This question is asked 13.6x more frequently at Mindshare than at other companies.

9. Why were you successful in your last role? Give a supporting example

How to answer

Questions about your successes allow an employer to learn more about your work ethic and your previous accomplishments.

It helps the interviewer to determine whether you will be driven to achieve such results in the future.

This question also allows to understand how you define success, and what milestones in your career you consider important.

It’s the numbers and the facts that most accurately describe you as a good candidate.

Examples of your successes will be summarized in your resume and you should be ready to elaborate on them in the interview.

  1. About Yourself

    Think of the question as an invitation to discuss the professional characteristics that you're proud of or a particular achievement in your last job.

    • What steps did you take to become successful?
    • What personal and professional qualities did you use to reach your goals at work?
    • How did your actions help your team and the company to succeed?
    • What challenges did you overcome to become successful?
    • What are your lessons learned?
  2. About The Company

    Research the requirements of the company you applying to and review the job listing. Make a list of job qualifications and skills that match the preferred qualifications of the ideal candidate.

  3. About The Fit

    Explain your most important achievements at work, using the STAR method to provide specific examples of how your past work and achievements show how you will be an asset to the organization you're interviewing with.

    It’s your chance to tell about your Key Selling Points – skills that make you a successful employee.

    Emphasize the 3-5 strongest of them that helped you to achieve results at work to answer the question.

    It's important to provide the interviewer with evidence of how you achieved success in the workplace.

    For example, if you are in publishing, tell your story about how you ensured the timely release of 20 issues of the magazine, despite any problems you faced.

    The role of such an achievement for the company was particularly important and demonstrates how your work contributed to the business. Difficulties and ways to overcome them, new ideas, daily work, and its results will help the interviewer to assess your experience correctly.

Pro Tip

Do not be afraid of blowing your trumpet and making yourself look good.

If you are a good employee, then make sure you tell them so.

Try to show a high level of ambition.

Your goal is to demonstrate your determination and willingness to take on challenges and achieve results.

Statistics

This question is asked 9.8x more frequently at Mindshare than at other companies.

10. Why and how did you choose your career?

How to answer

By asking this question, the interviewer tries to understand what led you to choose your career path and hopefully to find out how enthusiastic you are about the work you do and how well you will fit into the job that you are applying for.

The answer will show whether your desire to work “here” and if it is a determined part of your overall career plan or it is just a stop along the way to other things.

  1. About Yourself

    • What characteristics and skills do you have?
    • What makes you good at what you do?
    • What attracted you to your career path?
    • What strengths do you possess that make you the best candidate for the job?
  2. About The Company

    Do your research and learn as much as possible about the organization and the career path you might forge there.

    Match up any of your skills and experiences that relate to the requirements of the job. How can you apply them to your new position, as well as the future?

  3. About The Fit

    Don’t just explain how you originally found this career.

    Show you’re still glad to be doing it, that will put the hiring manager’s mind at ease that you’re motivated to do the work, and that you’ll be a big success if they hire you.

    Your answers should provide the basis for a discussion about your passion for the work you do, your qualifications, and your skill set.

    Make a list of factors that led you to this choice.

    At the interview, tell only about those that characterize you and the situation in a positive light.

    It may have been a successful internship with a similar function, which confirmed your desire to work in this field.

    It could be a successful example of your parents, relatives or friends, which is indicative to you. You might have been motivated by your own academic success in this field which led you to enter it.

Pro Tip

Say that your chosen career best reflects your interests and you see it as continuing to be the most promising one for you.

Here’s a simple formula for answering this question:

First, address the origin of your motivation by tying it to your personal history. Then, explain what keeps you energized about the work on a daily basis that led you to where you are today. Finally connect your story and motivation to this job, the one you are interviewing for.

Statistics

This question is asked 7.8x more frequently at Mindshare than at other companies.

11. What negative thing would your last boss say about you?

How to answer

This question is another way of asking “What is your greatest weakness?".

Interviewers ask this question to gauge your level of self-awareness, your honesty and openness, and your capacity for self-improvement.

Understandably, people might be intimidated by this question; it's because the question refers to your shortcomings. Fortunately, Mr. Simon is here to help!

You can be fairly sure that the interviewer will ask this question sometime during the interview. Just as with your STAR stories, you should have a “weakness” story ready to relate, so be prepared.

  1. About Yourself

    While it is good to be honest and open, it will not help you to put yourself down. What's important is to focus on a weakness or shortcoming that you have overcome.

    Be certain not to mention something that is vital to (or related to) the position for which you are applying.

    Think of something that may have been noted by a past supervisor that was, perhaps, mentioned in your performance reviews as a developmental area.

  2. About The Company

    Research the company (website, social media, etc.) to learn about the company’s culture. What personal and professional qualities do they value?

    Carefully check the job description to avoid speaking about any past weaknesses that may touch upon key areas of responsibility for the position that you are applying for.

  3. About The Fit

    Despite what may seem to be a negative question, you can actually turn this into a positive one! You do this by stating a negative trait or a weakness, unrelated to the position you are applying for, and explain how you have either already overcome it or are working to improve it.

    Be careful with your choices, if you mention any weaknesses that are needed to be successful in the position you are interviewing for, you probably won’t get hired!

    For example, if you're applying for a front-end developer position, do not talk about how you are taking classes to improve your HTML coding skills. Even if you think you are succeeding in your studies, this will look to the hiring manager to be a shortcoming on your part.

Pro Tip

Use this question to sell yourself! Show how well you've overcome a weakness by motivating yourself and even learning a new skill to grow professionally.

Statistics

This question is asked 6.8x more frequently at Mindshare than at other companies.

12. What did you do in your last role when your workload was enormous?

How to answer

We all have times when the workload gets heavier than normal.

Asking this question, the interviewer is looking for employees who can react effectively to an increase in workload required in this position. They want to know that you will not become overwhelmed if workloads unexpectedly become enormous.

The answer to this question shows how well you work under pressure and how well you manage a stressful situation.

  1. About Yourself

    • How do you approach problems and stress?
    • Are you adaptable?
    • How do you prioritize your tasks?

    Maybe you organize them by which ones you can complete independently and which ones you need help with?

    • Do you take sufficient breaks, so you do not exhaust yourself?
    • Do you communicate your approaches with your managers or teammates?
  2. About The Company

    Research the company, its corporate website, its tone and mission, social media accounts.

    • What do they value in their employees?
    • What are their current goals?
    • What will your responsibilities be in this position?
    • Will your workload be higher than you used to have?
  3. About The Fit

    Tell how you managed your work responsibilities in your previous jobs using the STAR method.

    Provide an example of an event that happened previously in your career, including a description of what caused the issue, how you addressed it, and what the results were of your intervention.

    How will you react if an enormous workload happens in this new job?

    The interviewers must see the fit between you and their company, so your task is to highlight your best traits.

    In your response, include specific problem-solving and time management skills that helped you to handle the heavy workload and will help you to overcome these obstacles in the future.

    For example, if you applying to a software implementation team, describe how you were able to handle an unanticipated increase in your workload through strategic planning, teamwork, and by increasing the work pace.

    Explaining how you thought out a plan of action and worked together with others to ensure all contingencies were addressed is a good way to answer this question.

Pro Tip

In any case, try not to appear like you were in any way discouraged or stressed out by the challenge of an unanticipated increase in workload.

Rather than elaborating upon how difficult the situation was, simply provide a straightforward account of how you helped to efficiently and effectively resolve it. Tell about your lessons learned.

Statistics

This question is asked 40.3x more frequently at Mindshare than at other companies.

13. What challenges are you looking for in this position?

How to answer

This is a typical question that interviewers ask to determine what you are looking for in your next job, whether you are qualified for the job and if you would be a good fit for the position.

They want to hire people with goals and motivation for their career; they want to understand how you approach novel situations and difficult tasks that you might expect to face, and the situations you consider to be a challenge.

This question can be a way for you to show how you handle these circumstances. It also helps the interviewer to know if you are a person who likes routines or a person who prefers dynamic changes in plans.

  1. About Yourself

    • What qualities do you wish to develop in yourself both professionally and personally?
    • What kind of culture do you want to work in?
    • What motivates you?
    • What will help you to achieve your future goals?

    Choose those things that you’re already pretty good at, but still trying to improve even more.

  2. About The Company

    Research the company, its culture and the work environment. Check their website, read up on any media report you can find about them, check out their social media platform.

    Carefully read the job description to get an insight into what the company thinks the challenges are. Make sure to include them in your answers to demonstrate your skill set.

  3. About The Fit

    The best way to answer this question is to discuss how you would like to be able to effectively apply your skills and experience to the new job.

    Focus on those skills that you are most passionate about or have the most experience with. You can also mention that you are motivated by challenges, can effectively meet them, and have the flexibility and skills necessary to handle a stimulating job.

    Describe specific examples of challenges you have met and the goals you have achieved in the past. Choose those that reveal your strengths.

    Challenges clearly vary widely based on the position you are applying for.

    For example, in sales you may speak about higher sales quotas, a larger sales territory, or a more prominent range of products or services.

    In IT, they might be learning a new software program or incorporating the cloud in the company’s systems.

    In a management position, it could be leading a larger team than you currently do or stepping into your first leadership role.

Pro Tip

Don’t suggest challenges that can prevent you from doing a job properly or those which are impossible to resolve.

Also don’t choose those that are too easy or too quick to resolve, because in such a way you will not be able to show that you are eager to grow further and meet difficult tasks.

Be honest and self-aware and don’t be afraid to speak about some of your points that may need improvement. Not those, of course, that are related to your crucial work duties.

Statistics

This question is asked 12.5x more frequently at Mindshare than at other companies.

14. Tell me about your greatest professional accomplishment

How to answer

Of all your accomplishments (and I am sure you’ve had a great many of them!), you should choose the one most relevant to this job position.

  1. About Yourself

    Write down your Key Selling Points - your top 3-5 skills that make you a strong professional.

    Write down a list of your top 3-5 professional accomplishments that you are most proud of. No need for lengthy descriptions, just 1-2 words for each one to help you recall each situation.

    Make sure you have developed the story behind each accomplishment and have a strong command of the details of what happened so that you can tell the story clearly and distinctly.

    Along with each accomplishment, mark which of your Key Selling Points they showcase. How exactly?

  2. About The Company

    Based on your research of the company, what are their current needs?

    • What are the major projects going on?
    • What are the expectations for the position you are applying for?
  3. About The Fit

    Try to imagine yourself being an employee of the company you are applying to, say, at your 6th month into the job.

    • Which of your Key Selling Points and accomplishments would be most relevant to the company?
    • What “have you accomplished at your new job?”

    Choose the most relevant accomplishment from your list and then practice telling your story.

Pro Tip

Most enterprises are now going through major transformations, often called Digital Transformation.

Do your research on what it means and what is often involved, to get a better idea of the current goals and environments in companies. But one thing that definitely characterizes this transformation is striving for agility.

In particular, for startups (if you are applying to a startup or a small business), agility is their middle name, in order for them to survive among bigger sharks in the market.

So, demonstrating qualities like agility and adaptability should generally be helpful and quite a safe choice in most circumstances today.

Statistics

This question is asked 9% more frequently at Mindshare than at other companies.

Take a quiz

Take a quick quiz and check if you’re ready to answer this question at your next job interview:

Why do interviewers ask this question?

AThey want to know why you think the accomplishment you chose is your greatest, to give them an idea of what you think is important

BThey want to hear a specific example of your work to see if your problem solving skills fit in with the issues and problems their company might be experiencing

CThey want to know if you are a great multitasker who can get 10 different things done by the end of the day, no matter how long you have to stay at work to complete it all

15. Tell me about a time you had to raise an uncomfortable issue with your manager

How to answer

Even though you may have a great relationship with your manager, there may have been times where you did not see eye to eye.

By describing how you managed to deal with an uncomfortable issue in the past, you give the interviewer insight into how you’d handle one in the future.

They are curious about the respect you show to a higher authority while having the courage to stand up for what you believe in.

  1. About Yourself

    Think of a conflict or disagreement you had with your manager where you responded well, either by suggesting a compromise or taking a calm, relaxed stance when you could have answered in a heated tone.

    Getting along well with your manager shows your desire to work together and highlights your creative problem-solving abilities.

    • What was the resolution of an issue?
    • Did you and your manager come to an agreement?
  2. About The Company

    Research the company and its culture.

    • What do they value?
    • Is there anything that you can find about how they deal with conflict resolution?
    • What problems and obstacles might employees face in the position you are applying for?
  3. About The Fit

    Your story should ideally show how competent you are at your work, which will give the hiring manager confidence in hiring you. This answer can also display other great skills such as negotiating, selling an idea and inspiring others.

    Your answer can sound like this:

    I usually avoid conflict because I’ve been building trust with my colleagues from the start. I understand that the final decision is up to my boss, and I have to help him find the best option. I was lucky to have a very good relationship with my superiors. At my last job, I had a disagreement with the manager about the launch date of the product. But he listened to my opinion and we came up with a solution that we both liked.”

    You should respond with an example using the STAR method to make your story concise and logical.

Pro Tip

Say that it is better to raise uncomfortable questions and ask them directly. Emphasize that you always initiate communication by setting the tone of the conversation in a format of frankness on both sides.

A sincere and respectful conversation builds trust between people, even when the subject of your discussion may be difficult for each part.

Statistics

This question is asked 7.2x more frequently at Mindshare than at other companies.

16. Tell me about a time when you had multiple competing deadlines and how you managed them

How to answer

Why do interviewers ask this question?

Your answer will help them to gauge your ability to discuss your time management skills, your understanding of the importance of managing multiple projects, and overall decisiveness on the job.

It will also help them to understand your sense of urgency and to get an idea of how well you will perform in such circumstances.

  1. About Yourself

    It’s your chance to show that in tough times you turn to your inner strength and use your skills to find the right solutions.

    Remember situations of tight deadlines at your previous job and the many problems you had to solve on a daily basis.

    Answer the following questions for yourself.

    • How responsible are you?
    • Are you able to cope with different tasks and deadlines without getting yourself in a muddle?
    • How well do you organize your work when you have to juggle multiple projects/clients at the same time?
    • How do you make sure you’re not falling behind?
  2. About The Company

    Research the company and its culture. What kind of challenges are they facing?

    Review the job description to determine what you may be expected to be doing in this job.

    • Do you see any indication of multiple tasks that may have to be completed in tight time frames?
    • How would your performance be measured?
    • What will your responsibilities be?
    • Will you have the pressure of multiple deadlines?
  3. About The Fit

    Discuss relevant experiences when answering this question.

    Give examples of specific deadlines that came together at or near the same time and how you were able to meet them. This will demonstrate the value you provided in the past and help create an impression of success.

    Focus on answering in detail, with an emphasis on how the problems got solved, by using appropriate brevity combined with valid information.

    Show examples of decisiveness in planning, exhausting all avenues of recourse and utilizing proper choices of prioritization.

    Highlighting the ability to work with others or ask for help in order to get things done will show your resourcefulness in the face of adversity.

Pro Tip

Here is an example of an honest and professional answer:

In my previous job I had a deadline for 3 tasks simultaneously. I determined which one had the highest impact on my company and put the 3 tasks in order based on this priority. I estimated how long each task would take and planned the time in my diary. I also asked my manager if he would be able to delegate one of the tasks to my co-worker. We managed to do everything successfully and completed all three projects on time.

Statistics

This question is asked 13.9x more frequently at Mindshare than at other companies.

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This page has been updated on August 20, 2020.

You can practice answering this question, as well as over 160 other common job interview questions from Mindshare by engaging in a mock interview with Mr. Simon. As an artificial being, his undeniable benefits include:

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