In this post, we have collated some of the best behavioral interview questions. To make the most of this list, use the STAR technique.
Ability to handle stressful situations
1. Tell me of a time when you were in a stressful situation at work and how you handled it.
2. Tell me how you handle working under pressure.
3. Tell me about a project where you have had to change direction and how you handled the situation.
4. Describe a time when you had to adjust your working style to get a project delivered.
5. Have you ever had to deal with company change ie redundancies, how did it impact you and your team?
6. Have you been blamed for something you didn’t do? How did you explain your part in the project?
7. How do you protect your direct reports from pressure in the business?
ANALYTICAL SKILLS / PROBLEM SOLVING
8. Tell me of a project where you used analytic skills and what was the outcome.
9. Describe a time when you have had to deal with a lot of data.
10. Tell me what steps you would follow initiate a business project.
ATTENTION TO DETAIL
11. Tell me a time when you have found a major issue and how you dealt with it.
12. Describe a time when the financial part of a project didn’t stack up and what steps did you take to resolve it.
13. Describe a time when you made a mistake at work and how did you rectify it.
14. Describe a time when project quality vs time pressures competed and which one did you choose.
CLIENT FOCUS / CUSTOMER ORIENTATION
15. Have you ever dealt with an irate client or customer? What happened and what was the outcome?
16. Tell me of a time when you joined a company and had to deal with senior managers who demand everything their way
17. Have you ever had a project where the client / customer has changed their mind half way through the project?
18. Tell me of a time when you have had to priorities internal or external client’s projects.
19. Describe a time where you have gone out of your way to help a customer. What did you do and what was the result?
20. How do you deal with managers that demand their way on every project?
21. Describe a time when you have had to say “no” to a client / customer, what was the outcome?
22. How do you build communication plans into your projects?
23. Have you ever had to present and sell your ideas to senior management for approval?
24. Tell me of a time when you have had to present an idea to an audience that weren’t interested
25. Do you consider yourself a great verbal and written communicator, explain why?
26. Tell me a time when you had to communicate a project to colleagues and they didn’t listen
25. Tell me a time when you thought “outside the box” to provide a solution
26. What was the last innovative idea you had and did you follow though?
27. Tell me a time when some client / customer came up with a solution, but you thought of a better way of delivering it.
28. Tell me how you inspire creativity both in yourself and your team
29. Have you ever made a business decision and regrated it?
30. Do you work collaboratively to make decisions, or create them yourself?
31. Tell me a time when you had to make a split second decision and follow it though
32. What was the hardest business decision you have made in recent times?
33. Have you ever made a decision, not knowing the full facts?
34. Describe your decisions making process
35. Describe a decision you made that was unpopular and how you handled implementing it.
36. Describe a goal that you have achieved that has made you proud. Why was this important to you? What steps did you take to achieve your goal?
37. Tell me of a professional goal you have set in your career, did you achieve it? If not, why didn’t you achieve it.
38. Have you ever set strategic goals, please provide some examples
39. Tell me of a time when someone has set an unrealistic goal for you to deliver
40. Have you ever had to prioritise goals because of budget constraints?
41. Describe a project you have managed where you needed to ensure others met their milestones or targets.
42. Tell me about a project you initiated. What did you do? Why? What was the outcome?
43. Describe the last time you used your initiative to deliver a project
44. Tell me the process you use to initiate a project and how you gain “buy-in”
45. In your professional career what is the best idea you have come up with and did you deliver it?
46. Give me an example of where you used logic to deliver a solution
47. Tell me about a business situation when you felt honesty was inappropriate.
48. Tell me a time where you thought your boss was making a bad decision, what did you do?
49. Describe a time when a work colleague acted unethically, how did you handle it?
50. Have you ever had to deliver a project that challenged your integrity?
51. Everyone makes mistakes, what is your biggest professional mistake, and how did you handle it?
52. Give an example of when you had to work with someone who was difficult to get along with. How/why was this person difficult?
53. Give me an example where you have felt uncomfortable talking to someone and why
54. Tell me when you have had to present to senior leaders, what was the ouctcome?
55. Describe your leadership style
56. What was the most challenging team that you have led in your career?
57. In your professional career, what is your greatest leadership achievement?
58. Describe a time when you faced conflict with a direct report
59. Tell me a time when you have dismissed or made someone redundant, what did you feel?
60. Describe a time when you have had to allocate pay rises and they have been unpopular with your team.
61. How do you motivate your team?
62. Tell me how you have handled conflict between your team members or someone outside you team at conflict with your team.
63. Tell me about a time when you had to solve a problem with very little guidance or direction
64. What do you think it takes to be a truly effective leader?
65. Do you think leaders are born or made? What’s made you an effective leader?
66. Give an example of where you have had someone challenge your authority or ability to lead
67. Describe an obstacle you have had in becoming a leader
68. Who do you admire as a leader and what lessons have you learned and applied from this example?
PLANNING AND ORGANISATION / TIME MANAGEMENT
69. Tell me about a time when you went overtime on a deadline on a project
70. Describe a time when you have had to step in and deliver someone else’s project
71. Describe how you would plan a project
72. Given two tasks for different managers, how do you prioritise one above the other?
73. Describe what tools and processes you use to manage your time
74. How do you handle meeting tight deadlines?
SALES / NEGOTIATION
75. Tell me a time when you have been a meeting with a client and the senior sales person is promising something that you know can’t be delivered.
76. What is your greatest sales-related achievement to date?
77. Tell me what you best negotiation deal with a vendor was and what was the outcome?
78. Tell me about your previous success in building a customer base from a standing start.
79. What is your greatest sales-related achievement to date?
80. Describe a time where you have had to sell something, knowing that it is not the right solution for the customer.
81. Have you ever negotiated a pay increase outside the normal annual rise?
82. Tell me a time in your professional career when a salesman has tried to sell you something and you know it is a bad deal.
83. Tell me a time when you had to settle a dispute between two team members.
84. Describe a time when you have made a decision that has been unpopular with your team
85. Tell me a time when one of your project team has not delivered or not achieving the set goals, what was the process you followed?
86. Do you like to lead a project or be part of a team that delivers it?
87. You notice one of your team members is not their usual self, how do you handle it?
88. Describe a time when you struggled to build a relationship with someone important.
89. Tell me about a time you needed to get information from someone who wasn’t very responsive. What did you do?
90. Describe a time when you joined a team that was very dysfunctional and not operating as a unit.
91. Have you handled a difficult situation with a co-worker?
92. What do you do if you disagree with a co-worker?
93. How do you motive a team to deliver a project?