As you progress within your career, the types of interviews you attend will naturally evolve too. Hopefully, they’ll become far less daunting and with a wealth of experience under your belt, talking about your skills and fit for the job shouldn’t be too much of a challenge.
But, that’s not to say that you no longer need to practice and prepare for an interview. Understanding what questions are typically asked in an executive interview can help you to formulate succinct responses and ultimately, give you a better chance of securing the role.
Below, we’ll help you out by outlining five interview questions you can expect for an executive position and explain how to answer these.
1. How would your direct reports describe your management style?
While some employers may ask you how you’d describe your management style, this question goes one step further in a bid to examine your self-awareness. It should give them an idea of how you interact with your employees and whether your way of leading would suit their business.
Think about the positive interactions you’ve had with your direct reports and how you can highlight these in your answer. A good approach is to define what you believe a good management style is and then give examples of how you achieve this.
In addition, if you have any positive feedback from your colleagues to refer to, then definitely do so. Just try not to sound too arrogant, as this can be extremely off-putting.
2. How do you go about resolving conflicts in your team?
Again, this question is designed to understand your management style and what you could bring with you to the position. You need to demonstrate that you can not only see when conflict is about to happen, but also how to resolve it.
Again, try to give examples of a time where you’ve successfully done so. Explain what happened, the approach you took and the results.
For instance, it may be that two members of staff had differing opinions on how a task should be done and weren’t able to come to a conclusion. You may have sat them down and encouraged them to talk to one another and as a result, the task was completed successfully.
Being able to show that you can manage conflict and work with your employees to overcome issues is a key trait in an executive-level position.
3. What strategies do you use to keep your teams motivated?
Another question that focuses on your interaction with your direct reports. Managers play an important part in employee happiness, so organisations want to take on leaders that can drive their teams forward and keep them motivated.
You should highlight that you understand the importance of keeping your teams motivated, alongside the fact that different things will motivate each employee.
There’s no right or wrong answer here, as everyone takes their own approach, but again, try to give examples. Similar to the previous question, it’s worth highlighting where there was an issue and the steps you took to resolve it. Link it back to your management style and you’re sure to make a great impression.
4. Tell me about a time where you’ve had to make a difficult decision?
A huge part of being a leader is the ability to problem solve and make difficult decisions. Therefore, this is a common behavioural interview question for executive positions.
Consider challenges you’ve faced in your career so far. It might be a time where you had to let go of a certain member of staff that wasn’t performing well, end a contract with a certain provider or make changes to your internal structure.
Remember, the interviewer wants to know how and why you made the decision, as well as the outcome. So choose an example that had positive results in the end.
5. What would you say has been your biggest achievement in your career so far?
This is your chance to demonstrate what sets you apart from the other candidates interviewing for the position. Therefore, it’s important to understand how to answer this question. Think of it as a platform to tell them your story, but ensure that you highlight skills that are relevant to the role.
For example, you may choose to give a results-based response, which provides facts and figures to demonstrate your value, a skills-based response, which highlights how your skills have helped you in your previous roles, or a values-based response, which shows the value you could bring to the position you’re interviewing for.
Ready to prepare for your next executive-level interview?
These are just some of the questions you may expect to be asked in an executive-level interview, so it’s definitely worth preparing your responses in advance.
Interviews can be daunting no matter what level you’re at, but being able to talk comfortably about your fit for the role can be a huge advantage.
With these tips, we hope you’ll be able to secure your next executive job in no time.
The above article was provided by CV Library