interview questions for managers
Inc. Magazine

Attending a management position interview? Then this is for you. Even if you’ve never held a managerial position, you should ensure the interviewers can see your managerial abilities and leadership stance. An interview for a managerial position can be intimidating, whether you are already a manager trying to advance in your position or applying for your first managerial post. The most typical interview questions an HR and managers and suitable answers are covered in this article.

What are the 10 Most Common Interview Questions and Answers for Managers?

Before we get to the customary questions and answers to ask during managers’ interviews, let’s talk about a few things you should be aware of before the interview.

#1. Could You Give a Brief Overview of Your Background and Who You are?

Interviewers can learn a lot about applicants by using anecdotes. If you create a story with these three components—a riveting beginning, an engrossing middle, and a satisfying conclusion—the interviewer will be convinced that you deserve the position.

Before discussing your degree, briefly discuss a relevant experience that sparked your interest in the job you are seeking. Describe in the narrative how your educational background, professional experience, and enthusiasm for the industry in which the company excels make you a superb candidate for the position. Mention any challenging or unique projects that you have worked on or directed. For Instance;

I come from a tiny town where opportunities are few, for example. There weren’t many reputable universities close by, so I started using online education to keep up with the finest. I started learning to code there, and after that, I sought certification in computer programming. After getting my first job as a front-end programmer, I continued to invest time in learning both front-end and back-end languages, tools, and frameworks.

#2. How Do You React to Pressure or Demanding Situations?

Can you maintain your stand when under pressure, or do you capitulate? They want to make sure you won’t forget it as deadlines and pressure mount. The ability to remain composed under pressure is highly prized.

Example: “I’ve had to develop the skills to handle challenging situations that will inevitably arise during my career. I believe that with each new experience, I get better at it. For instance, things were not going as planned when my team and I were working on launching a new product at my previous employer. My immediate response was to take a step back and come up with some suggestions for managing the current issue rather than accusing anyone in particular. In that case, maintaining composure was unquestionably preferable to my propensity for fear since it allowed me to handle the matter more logically.

#3. How Do You React to Conditions of Pressure or Demand?

Are you able to hold your ground, or do you give in? When deadlines and pressure mount, they want to ensure you won’t forget it. Under pressure, the capacity to maintain composure is highly regarded.

Example: “I’ve got to build the abilities essential to manage the difficult situations that will unavoidably come throughout my work. I think I become better at it with every new experience. For instance, while my team and I were working on the launch of a new product at my previous employment, things were not going as anticipated. Instead of accusing anyone in particular, my first reaction was to take a step back and think of some ideas for handling the current situation. The ability to address the situation more logically was given by maintaining calm, which was superior to my tendency for terror in such situations.

#4. Do You Prefer Working Independently or With a Team?

The investigation should support your statement about the working environment and business culture. However, you should know that most firms will utilize teams in some form.

Although some jobs require you to work alone, many others frequently demand you to collaborate with others. Focus on the characteristics of your personality that most closely match the position’s requirements while responding to this question. It can also be in your best interest to underline both the benefits and drawbacks of both potential scenarios in your response to this question.

For illustration: “I enjoy mixing the two. I enjoy teamwork because it allows me to access a range of viewpoints and feedback. However, I’m as comfortable taking on assignments that require me to work alone. Even though I can concentrate best when alone and in a calm environment, I appreciate working with my coworkers to develop the best ideas.

#5. Have You Submitted Applications for Any Other Jobs?

Interviewers are interested in learning if you are serious about the position or if it is the only one that you are considering. Simply put, they want to know if you are their #1 choice. To be honest, it is best. If you’re applying for other jobs, let them know. You do not have to specify where you are applying unless you have an alternate offer. They might ask what level of the hiring process you are in with other companies. You can also mention that you’re actively looking for offers if your interviewer asks.

Example: “I’ve applied to a few other firms, but at the moment, I’m most excited about this role because…

 #6. What are Your Professional Goals?

This is one question that recruiting managers ask potential employees far more frequently today than in the past. They try to ascertain whether a candidate’s goals align with the company.

Answers outlining how your short- or long-term professional goals align with the position’s requirements and the company’s advantages are good for recruiting managers to hear. When there is a strong fit, there is a higher chance that a recruit will work there long enough to recoup the investment. Engagement is also frequently higher, boosting the new employee’s productivity. Make sure to discuss a goal that seems appropriate. Alignment is possible in this way.

Example of a reaction: Becoming a leader is my primary professional goal. I’ve just recently begun my project management career, but I’ve already had the honor of inspiring and guiding several outstanding teams to victory. That fueled my love for leadership, which was one of the reasons I wanted to go for this opportunity. I’ll be able to use my technical skills more effectively and devote more time to project management, which will get me one step closer to my long-term goal of obtaining a leadership position.

#7. Do You Maintain Organization While Overseeing Multiple Projects at Once?

Employers are curious to know how you prioritize and organize your time to be productive and efficient. They want to know if you have a method for managing your workload that is separate from the company’s workflow and schedules. Be sure to emphasize your respect for and adherence to deadlines.

Example: “I’m used to juggling tasks because I routinely go between coding one software application and another at my current job. I allocate time for particular tasks and use the timeboxing technique to ensure they are all completed. It helps me prioritize what has to be done first and holds me responsible for the more mundane daily tasks I am in control of.

#8. How Did You Grow Intellectually Over the Past Year?

This query can come up as a result of the pandemic. Employers are curious about how various employees use their free time. You don’t need to be afraid to answer this question if you don’t spend time attending classes or practicing your skills. We learn from every experience we have.

If you put effort into honing your professional skills, you might say the following.

For instance, “The extra time on my plate allowed me to concentrate on where I want to take my career.” To enhance my skills and stay current with the thinking in my field, I took many online classes and read a lot of periodicals.

#9. Your Resume Gives the Impression That You Took a Year Off. Would You Mind Telling us Why?

Cultures differ in how much they regard gap years. In some occupations, a gap year may have a negative connotation (you’re out of date because the market changes so frequently).

Instead of using your gap year as a justification to delay the transition from childhood to adulthood, tell the interviewer how it helped you become the competent professional you are today. Depending on where you are and how frequently they occur, employers may be interested in hearing stories about what you did and how your experiences helped you prepare for this career.

For example: “In my final year of high school, I didn’t feel ready to choose my educational path, so I enrolled in a wilderness course for a few months to establish my life’s priorities.” Even if it might seem a little disorganized, the time I put into it allowed me to gain many new skills, such as those connected to leadership, communication, etc. I realized that (say, your degree) would be the ideal fit for me to pursue my interest during that time.

#10. How Did You Learn About This Position?

Employers are curious to know whether you are actively seeking employment with them, discovered about the position from a recruiter, or were referred to the position by an employee already in the company. They want to know how you discovered them.

If someone recommended you for the position, mention their name. Make no assumptions about the interviewer’s knowledge of the recommendation. You should probably continue by describing your relationship with the person who made the recommendation. For example, say it if you’ve worked with Mike before (the individual who recommended you) or if you met him over coffee at a networking event to give yourself more credibility. If Mike, who works at the company, suggested you apply, please explain why he thought you’d be an excellent fit.

I learned about the position since I’ve been following your company’s profile on LinkedIn for a long. I’m very excited about your work in the X, Y, and Z areas, so I was eager to apply. Because the required skills align with those I currently possess, it appears to be a terrific opportunity for me to further your goals and the ideal next step in my career.

What are the 5 Hardest Interview Questions for Managers?

It can be challenging to predict the types of questions that will be asked during managers job interview. Some interview question types never change, although they might vary quite a bit based on your profession and industry. Employers are constantly seeking workers who can collaborate effectively, accept responsibility for their actions, and show that they are the ideal person for the job.

#1. Please Describe Yourself

Almost all interviews will begin with a question of this nature. It might not always be framed this way, but this is your chance to introduce yourself and offer the interviewer a brief overview of your professional background. This question typically opens interviews and gives you a chance to make an excellent first impression. Interviewers frequently decide whether or not they will be a good fit for the position in the first five minutes, which might influence their decision-making throughout the interview.

#2. Tell me About a Time When You Failed or Made a Mistake and How You Handled it

After making a mistake, recover. When responding to this question, the most crucial thing to remember is to choose your errors wisely.

Everyone errs occasionally. It is expected that a new employee will make a mistake at some point, and that’s alright, especially when you are hiring them. All of us are humans. However, how you do, it is more crucial.

#3. Describe an Instance When You Had to Cope With a Challenging Coworker and What You Did

There will always be a challenging coworker in a company. The interviewer wants to know how you handle conflict, which is still another challenging question since you must be extremely careful how you respond.

#4. “In Five Years, Where Do You See Yourself?”

This question cannot be answered because anything can happen and change in five years. They genuinely mean: “Could I trust you to stay with this company for a long time if I hired you?” Therefore, avoid responses like “I intend to be retired by then” or “I aspire to be running my own business.”

By stating that you wish to gain a solid reputation as someone assisting the company’s success, you may provide them with a response that fits their needs.

#5.  What is Your Reason for Changing Jobs?

If you are in the resettlement process or this will be your first employment after the military, it might be pretty simple to respond to this question. If not, they still want to know why you want to move jobs, not just because you might not like your current employer. Focus on the proper justifications; suitable instances include:

  • To embark on a new endeavor
  • To further one’s career
  • Merely a better chance to put your abilities and knowledge to use

Managers Interview Questions: What are Your Strengths and Weaknesses

You can get a sense of the structured answer from these samples. They show that you have faith in this ability and will use it to succeed in this particular role.

#1. Cooperation

I am a great team player. Working well in teams has always been one of my best qualities. I learned about my capacity to motivate others under pressure while working as a marketing research analyst on a project encompassing numerous stakeholders, focus groups, and substantial field research. The client implemented our recommendations to develop an environmentally and economically sustainable product.

#2. Detail-Oriented

As a content creator, I enjoy coming up with fresh ideas for how to connect with our audience. But my attention to detail is what I’m most renowned for. I give word choice a lot of thought because it can elevate a composition from excellent to great (and I never miss a deadline). My blogs and articles frequently rank highly in Google searches and receive lots of traffic.

#3. A Positive Outlook

One of my talents is, unquestionably, my positive outlook. In the last ten years, I’ve worked as a tutor, a health aide, and a waitress—all positions that require a lot of stamina and energy. I can look at an issue from various angles and sympathize with my patients, students, and clients to comprehend their requirements at any time.

How do You Respond if You Don’t Know the Answer to the Managers Interview Questions

#1. Be Patient

Priorities first: Declare that you are considering the query and that it was asked. Simply saying, “Hmm… that’s a wonderful question. You can say,” Let me think about that while I work through my initial ideas on addressing the subject.

Keeping this in mind is crucial because it feels natural to fill up any pauses in conversation with words to prevent awkward silences. Make sure you have time to collect your thoughts before speaking so that you don’t accidentally reveal that you are baffled.

#2. Have a Backup Plan

Of course, occasionally, a question may arise that will defy all attempts at delaying, thinking aloud, or redirection. You cannot simply work through questions that need definitions or understanding of ideas that you are unfamiliar with. To answer these questions, utilize your research about the organization and sector the position is in.

#3. Be Confident

Own up and steer the conversation to a topic you are comfortable with if you are faced with a question you genuinely can’t answer. You might not be able to speak specifically about a specific skill, but if you can relate it to other skills, you’ll do much better than simply stating that you lack the desired skill.

Consider the scenario where you applied for a job that requested experience in social media marketing and were afterward questioned about it. Try refocusing the answer on something you do have experience with if you lack it.


When studying these interview questions and responses for managers, it’s essential to keep in mind that you should make sure your answers are tailored to the needs of the firm rather than your own.

Managers job interviews and responses to interview questions should be “tailored” to the organization you’re speaking with. You increase the likelihood that the hiring manager will be impressed by speaking directly to their needs.


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