Formal Interview Questions
Identify the qualities that are most important to you for the position you are looking to fill and choose the relevant questions that will help you gauge whether those characteristics are present. Pull from our list of provided questions below to determine key attributes and qualifications related to:
- Experience Organization Achievement
- Communication Conflict resolution Cultural sensitivity
- Customer relations Leadership Ethics Problem solving Failure
- You may wish to print this guide and check off the questions you select for each interview!
What do you love about [INDUSTRY OR TRADE]?
What was the reason you got into construction?
How do you ensure you meet your production goals? (working members)
What is most important for you to ensure you have a successful workday?
What tools/equipment do you typically bring? What are you used to the company providing?
What are you best at?
If you had the choice to be evaluated based on one skill (you building or performing something) what would it be?
Put these trade skills in order of “most skilled” to “least skilled” [insert list of skills in random order]
What size jobs are you used to working on?
How big are the crews you are used to working with? What were the dynamics like?
Were there any people on your team you didn’t get along with and how did you handle it?
Have you ever had any managers that you didn’t get along with? How did you handle it? How skilled were your formed team members?
What type of work would you like to do more of?
What project are you most proud of? Do you have any photos?
What do you find most exciting or fulfilling about your work? What’s a project you did but you couldn’t wait for it to be done?
What kind of work do you do, but you really don’t enjoy it?
If offered the position here, where would you like to see yourself in five years?
How long would you expect [SITUATION] to take if you were working with [PRESENT THE DETAILS]? (Ex. How long would a 6’ tall x 100’ long block wall take to lay? You are working with a skilled tender, and it’s a straight wall, all the materials are there and it has good access to everything)
What about your last job did you like least and most?
In what ways have you grown your skill set or experience in your last role?
How does your prior experience prepare you for this job?
What do you think you’ll like most about this job? And what do you think you’ll dislike based on your experience?
Why do you want to leave your current job? (if applicable)
What areas of your skills need improvement?
What are your overall career goals?
Tell me more about the employment gap on your resume (if applicable) Do you prefer to work as part of a team or rather work alone?
What do you think will be the most challenging and least challenging parts of this job? Who was your best boss, and who was the worst? Why?
Can you walk me through your resume?
Please tell me about your technical skills?
How do you prioritize your work?
How do you ensure you meet important deadlines?
Define your ability to organize projects from start to finish?
How have you handled a situation when your planning was not sufficient and you encountered unforeseen issues?
Can you discuss a time when you missed an important deadline?
Describe a situation in which you went above and beyond to complete a project.
Tell me about a time when you were overwhelmed and how you dealt with it.
Have you ever taken on more than you could handle, and if so, what did you do to resolve this?
Can you describe a time when you had to complete multiple projects at once?
Can you give an example of how your planning resulted in successful outcomes?
What are some ways you spend your time when work is slower than usual?
How do you deal with last minute changes that have to be incorporated into your work or projects?
How do you handle a situation where the work of a colleague threatens the completion of a project?
Tell me about a time when you discovered a more efficient way to do a work task?
Tell me about a time when you set a goal and achieved it.
What do you believe has been your greatest achievement during your career?
Can you talk about a challenge you recently overcame and the steps you took to do this? What was your most significant accomplishment in your last position?
When was the last time you received recognition or an award for work you did?
Can you discuss a time when you solved a problem creatively?
What is the biggest achievement in your life outside of work?
Tell me about a time when you went above and beyond to achieve an objective.
What methods do you use to build rapport with others? Can you give me an example?
Tell me about a time when you were able to break down a complex issue and explain it to a customer.
Walk me through an example of how you persuaded someone to agree to your suggestions in a business situation.
How would you go about explaining the solution to a complex problem to a client who was already frustrated with the situation?
What steps did you take to resolve a situation where there was a communication breakdown between you and a work colleague?
What do you think is more important – being a good listener or being a good communicator, and why?
Have you ever worked for someone who was a poor communicator? How did you overcome this?
What steps would you take if you realized you had misunderstood an important communication from your supervisor?
How did you react the last time you made a valid argument and you knew your colleagues didn’t agree with you?
Are you able to paint a picture of an idea or concept, and can you convince other people to go along with a proposal for a project or a new initiative?
Do you communicate better verbally or in writing?
Tell me about a time you had a conflict with someone at work.
Can you describe how you managed a situation when you disagreed with your manager?
Tell me about a time when you were working on a team project and one of the team was being difficult and impeding the progress of the entire team.
What is your approach to working with a group of diverse co-workers who have different backgrounds and opinions?
Give an example of when you had to respond to an unhappy customer and the steps you took to satisfy them.
Have you ever disagreed with a rule or procedure at work, and if so, what did you do about it?
Tell me about a time when you disagreed with an approach to a problem your boss wanted to pursue. How did you resolve the disagreement?
Give me an example of how you handle conflict in general.
What advice would you give a team member who complained about another co-worker’s behavior?
When working on a team project, how do you professionally raise objections to team members’ recommendations?
Can you talk about when you worked on a team with individuals from different cultural backgrounds?
Describe a time when you found it challenging to work with someone who was culturally different from you.
How do you adapt your communication style to account for the different cultures and customs of your co-workers? Can you give me an example?
Have you ever encountered a situation when you had to consider the sensitivities of people different from you? Tell me about it and what steps you took.
Discuss some policies you recommended to encourage a commitment to excellence through diversity at your former employers.
Discuss your approach to recruiting, hiring, training, and managing a diverse workforce. Tell me about a time when you took some steps to promote diversity and inclusion at work.
Tell me about a time when you were able to turn an unhappy customer into one who was satisfied and continued to do business with the company.
Describe a time when a customer changed the project’s objective after you had already begun to work on it. Were you able to meet their needs?
Tell me how you go about building relationships with new customers, and give me an example of a time when this was successful.
Describe how you go about prioritizing each customer’s needs when you’re working with a large number of customers.
Have you ever made a decision that resulted in the company losing a customer? Describe what happened and what you learned.
Talk about a time you didn’t clearly understand a customer’s request and the steps you took to clarify things.
Have you ever risked your job to defend a customer? If so, what happened?
Give me an example of when you had to deal with an angry customer. What did you do, and what was the result?
Can you describe a situation when a frustrated customer complained about a widely known problem with the company’s product? How did you resolve this?
Assuming you have had to take over responsibility for a customer, describe how you established a relationship with them.
Give me an example of a situation when you went beyond expectations to ensure a customer received the best possible service from your organization.
Please describe the most difficult customer you have had to deal with and how you handled it.
What has been the most common feedback on your customer service skills from your manager, and how did you react to this?
Can you relate a situation when you knew a customer would not get what they needed on time? How did you handle this?
Talk to me about a time when you had to say no to a customer because what they were asking for was against company policy.
Tell me about a time when your manager or supervisor asked you to do something that conflicted with your personal ethics?
Have you ever experienced a situation where your employer asked you to misrepresent information?
Have you ever witnessed a co-worker doing something unethical? How did you react?
Tell me about a time when you violated a company policy, and it was discovered. What happened?
Can you describe some of the methods you used in your last job to maintain compliance with relevant laws and ethical standards?
Tell me about a time when you had to make a decision that you felt would result in negative public reaction.
When was the last time you encountered an issue you thought might have been unlawful or not in accordance with professional principles?
Can you describe a situation when you had to do something in a more complicated way to adhere to proper professional standards?
Tell me about a situation when you believed something was not in compliance with professional ethics and the steps you took to deal with it.
Have you ever experienced a situation in which a valued customer behaved in an unethical manner?
Tell me about a time when you and/or a project you were working on failed.
Can you describe how you reacted to a situation in which you failed?
What is the greatest lesson you learned from one of your failures?
Have you ever witnessed one of your colleagues failing, and if so, how did you react?
Can you give me an example of how you were able to bounce back after a failure?
Describe a situation when you had to tell your manager about a failure.
How comfortable are you informing a client that you weren’t able to satisfy their requirements, and can you give me an example?
Have you ever taken responsibility for a failed business initiative even though it wasn’t your fault?
Describe a situation in which you were able to turn a failure into a positive outcome.
What has been the biggest business failure you have witnessed in your career, and what did you learn from it?
Have you ever had to choose between failing and doing something unethical to prevent it? Tell me about a time you took a risk, knowing that failure would have dire consequences.
Tell me about a time you were assigned to lead an important project and the steps you took to make it productive.
Tell me about a time you led an organizational transformation and how you got your team to adapt to the new environment.
Give me an example of a time when you used a unique strategy to motivate others to achieve a difficult objective.
Tell me how you ensure everyone completes their work on time when your team has to work on a tight deadline and give me an example of when you did this successfully.
Walk me through a situation where you helped a new employee integrate themselves into the team.
Tell me about a time you were successful at delegating tasks.
Can you give me an example to illustrate how you go about mediating a conflict between members of your team?
Describe a time when you were successful at achieving a goal by leading by example.
When was the last time you mentored an employee, and what strategy did you employ to achieve success?
Give me an example of how you were able to encourage your team members’ development, making them better employees.
What did you do the last time a team member approached you with a unique idea?
Talk about a time when you came up with a new idea or approach to solve a recurring problem.
Describe a time when you had to resolve an issue even though you didn’t have all of the information you needed.
Can you talk about a situation in which you recognized a problem as a potential opportunity?
Tell me about a time when you had to modify a project at the last moment due to unforeseen issues. How did you handle this?
Have you ever identified a customer’s need and used a creative idea to satisfy it?
Talk about a time you discovered an error overlooked by a co-worker and how you took the initiative to resolve the issue.
Describe a time when you anticipated a potential issue and proactively developed measures to prevent it.
Give me an example of how you analyze information to make a business recommendation.
Please walk me through the steps you take to research a problem and create a plan to solve it, using an example from your previous work.