If you are in the running for a project manager job then you are no doubt keen to find out what sort of questions you might come across in the interview. Clearly there are far too many different variations on the possible questions for us to cover them all here.
However, as we know the type of qualities the interviewers will be looking for it is possible to come up with some sample questions which should help you get prepared.
Tell Me About a Time When You Used Your Leadership Skills to Resolve a Problem
One of the areas you can be sure that they will be interested in is around your leadership skills. This is an area in which a lot of new project managers lack experience so it is a good chance for you to stand out from the crowd as well. Maybe you have led a team in the past or simply risen to a specific challenge in an old job. In either case, it is well worth focusing on your team-leading experience when you are planning for the interview. Not everyone realizes just how much of this is involved in the project manager role but it is absolutely vital that you can handle it. If you have never been involved in a leadership type of role then you might like to think about doing some training on this aspect of the role before you even go to the interview. It would certainly sound a lot better if you explained that you had done some training rather than simply saying that you have no experience in the area to date.
Give Me an Example of When You Had to Negotiate Hard to Get a Positive Outcome
This is another question which can be very hard to answer, depending upon the work you have done in the past. Negotiating with staff of all levels is a big part of the project manager role but it is something which people in other roles aren’t always exposed to. This is another area where you can give yourself a strong start in the recruitment process by giving a good example of your negotiating. This can really cover anything from small issues to big project decisions so don’t be afraid to choose an example regardless of how big or small it is.
How Do You Handle Stress in Your Work?
Stress is a part of life for most project managers, at least at some point along the way in the piece of work. You won’t be able to avoid it entirely so you should be able to show the interviewers how you currently handle it. This is something they will want to know but it is also something which it is worth your time thinking about as well. After all, the person who is most going to suffer is you get overwhelmed by stress on the job is you.
Tell Me about a Time You Had to Change Your Plans Due to Unforeseen Circumstances
Flexibility is another attribute which you will want to show to the people interviewing you. Even if you have never worked on a project before there are sure to have been times when you had to adapt your plans due to outside influences. What about when lots of your team were off work sick or when the computer systems went down at just the wrong time? Flexibility is an attribute which most of us show at work all the time without even thinking about it. The key is therefore to come up with some good examples for the interview.
How Would You Manage to Get a Diverse and Geographically Dispersed Team to Pull Together?
In the modern project world it is common to find teams spread all over the globe. If you have never come across this kind of working environment before then it could be something which frightens you a little at the start. However, the good old values which we have always regarded highly are still the most important ones even in this situation. Communication is going to be the key to running a strong project and this applies to both your own team and to the stakeholders whom you need to deal with. If you can stick to the basics and make sure that everyone feels involved and part of the team then you will be well on the way to success with this one.
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