Job Interview Question Database: Questions with Excellent Sample Responses, 121-128

The Job Interview Question & Response Database includes 150 of the most typical interview questions that you may face in your job interviews.

Questions are in no particular order, so take your time and go through the entire list!

Displaying Job Interview Questions 121-128

121. What do you do when you are faced with an obstacle to an important project? Give an example.

Sample excellent response:

When faced with an obstacle to an important project, I always find a way to complete the project in the best manner possible. As an intern at the insurance company I worked for last summer, I was responsible for designing the marketing materials that are handed out at the conventions and to insurance agents to keep the company on top of their minds.

Since I was unfamiliar with the materials and the designing software, it took me a little while to get a grasp on it. By the end of the workday on the deadline, I did not have all of the materials completed. So I spoke to my supervisor and tried to work something out. She told me that I was not allowed to do more than a certain number of hours in a week and that the materials needed to be done to turn in to production early the next morning. So I suggested that I stay after work that day to complete the project without hourly compensation. After a little persuasion, she allowed it, and I had the materials completed for the next morning successfully.

Also, remember the S-A-R (situation-action-result) technique and see a sample S-A-R story.

122. Tell about the most difficult or frustrating individual that you’ve ever had to work with, and how you managed to work with that person.

Sample excellent response:

I had a boss who would micro-manage every single project, often causing missed deadlines and frustration throughout the department. We all worried about our department’s reputation within the organization, but since he was our boss, we felt helpless to try and change anything.

It was indeed frustrating knowing you could complete a project on time, only to have your boss need to stop you and question what you were doing and suggest changes. But I got the idea that maybe if I talked with the boss and showed him that we could get more done as a department if we all worked together to have better communications and to trust each other to ask for help and direction when we needed it. Since we worked together, rather than against each other, the boss gained confidence in us to do our jobs, and we were able to do our jobs and also regain the reputation of the department.

Also, remember the S-A-R (situation-action-result) technique and see a sample S-A-R story.

123. Tell about a time when your trustworthiness was challenged. How did you react/respond?

Sample excellent response:

For my public-relations course, we had to do a group project to make a public-relations campaign for an organization. At the same time, I had three other group projects and six classes that were becoming extremely challenging to juggle.

Some of the group members knew this, so they expressed their concern and some doubt after I offered to take a significant portion of the project upon myself. I persuaded them to trust me and told them about the many things I am able to successfully juggle. I asked them to let me prove it to them, so in the end I completed my part early and we earned a high grade on the project.

Also, remember the S-A-R (situation-action-result) technique and see a sample S-A-R story.

124. Describe a situation when you were able to have a positive influence on the actions of others.

Sample excellent response:

Last semester my organization raised more than $1,500 for a local organization, The Children’s Home Society. It was a last-minute fundraiser. We did this over the course of a week, and it was right before the holiday season. There were 16 children who we were looking to help, and the goal of our campus was to raise $200 per child.

Ultimately the campus just took the total amount raised and divided it by the number of children; it came out to about $179/child. This money was to help give these underprivileged kids who came from broken homes a good holiday season. What the math comes out to is that we made this happen for approximately 9 children. I was the one who took on this challenge and made and distributed fliers to the business school faculty. I orchestrated the event, and I like to think that everyone in our organization feels as good about it as I do. I get goosebumps talking about it because it is one of the things of which I am most proud — I really feel like I had a positive impact on a few lives, and that is what I live for — I hope I made others in my organization feel the same. I am fairly certain I did.

Also, remember the S-A-R (situation-action-result) technique and see a sample S-A-R story.

125. Tell about a recent job or campus experience that you would describe as a real learning experience? What did you learn from the job or experience?

My recent internship would be the greatest learning experience I have had lately. The format of the internship is to work in each of the varying departments for a few days to get the lay of the land, We were supposed to spend the rest of our 10 weeks working on our projects and running the store (acting as manager).

I learned a lot about the processes of this specific organization and how they all work together, but I also learned a lot about applying management techniques. We had multiple training sessions that honed my leadership skills, but the application was where I really learned. I learned a lot about how to effectively interact with people. I made sure that before I would coach a team member on how to do something correctly, according to brand, that I knew exactly why that was the way we chose to do it, because I wanted them to understand. I learned that understanding is the key to implementing — I guess that’s why I’ve always liked math; if I understand why I need to do a formula a certain way, then I will remember it and even appreciate it.

Also, remember the S-A-R (situation-action-result) technique and see a sample S-A-R story.

126. Describe a team experience you found disappointing. What could you have done to prevent it?

Sample excellent response:

I recently worked on a project where we had to make a film, a documentary of sorts, on any topic we wanted — it was really just about the medium of film. My team picked the project of exploring diet-fad trends through the decades; we thought it would be amusing to see the crazy things people have done for a better body image over the years. Although the project turned out very well, and I am pleased with the end result, I was disappointed in the communication or lack thereof. Because of everything else I had going on this semester, I had opted not to be the group leader and thus the main communicator — which was good for me.

I like taking on the leadership role, but once in a while, I sit back and make sure somebody else does it so I still know how to be a supportive follower. Regardless, some of the group members did not turn in their research at the deadline, and our leader did not follow up with them on it. After it was a week overdue I had to jump in and map out a timeline for our team so we could get the project done. I had wanted to make sure we did not put it off because I knew film editing would be much more time consuming than we would anticipate.

We got everything done with time to spare but most of our work ended up being during the busiest week of the semester for me and for some of the other members, so I wish the communications had been more thorough earlier on in the project. The lesson I learned was to ensure that I am a consistently active participant even when I am not the leader; that way I am still maximizing my relationships with the group and working to improve my skills as well as those of the people working with me.

Also, remember the S-A-R (situation-action-result) technique and see a sample S-A-R story.

127. Recall a situation in which communications were poor. How did you handle it?

Sample excellent response:

I worked on a team with several members, and while we worked in the same building, we often used email to communicate with each other. One of the members was not as comfortable with email as the rest of the team, and would always slow the team process down by repeatedly asking people to repeat or rephrase their emails — always reading way too much into whatever was written in the emails.

At one point, after an agonizing day of emails back and forth trying to explain a critical part of the work, I decided I simply needed to go to her office and talk with her about the problem. We met, and I listened to her issues, and together we worked out a solution in which the team still did most of its communications via email, but whenever this team member did not understand something, instead of sending a confusing collection of emails, she would either pick up the phone or walk to the other person’s office and solve the miscommunication quickly and efficiently.

Also, remember the S-A-R (situation-action-result) technique and see a sample S-A-R story.

128. Describe a time when you had to make a difficult choice between your personal and professional (or academic) life.

Sample excellent response:

At the very beginning of my senior year of college, my best friend from home passed away. Classes hadn’t even been in session for a week when I heard of the car wreck on Saturday night; at first, the news wasn’t very bad, but as days went on her condition got worse, and by Tuesday, the doctors declared that she would be brain dead forever. I was the mediator between her family and our friends, so when they made the difficult decision to let her go, I was the first to know and had to keep everyone else informed. I was in total shock in the beginning, so I immediately told my professors the situation and that I might be going home for the rest of the week.

After getting upset and dealing with the pain that Tuesday afternoon, I realized that I couldn’t skip a whole week of classes to go home because I would be way too far behind, and I didn’t want to start my senior year like that. Even though I really wanted to be home with my family and friends during that whole week, the funeral wasn’t until that Saturday, I didn’t have Friday classes, and it was Labor Day weekend, so there was no class on Monday. I ended up finishing the week at school and still got to have a long weekend at home to mourn over my great loss.

Also, remember the S-A-R (situation-action-result) technique and see a sample S-A-R story.

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