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Meet the Author

AUTHOR

Kevin Downey

Meet Kevin

Kevin Downey has over a decade and a half of experience in business management, branding and marketing. He's volunteered his career coaching services at job fairs, given lectures on interview techniques and crafting winning resumes and cover letters. His career spans across grocery, healthcare, and the high-end art world. Now he manages his own business offering his services as a freelance writer and editor.

You can read more about Kevin Downey on Linkedin.

See Kevin's Best Community Answers

question
What has made you ready for this responsibility?

Anonymous Answer

My entire career has been working to solve customers' concerns, and in each new role, I have taken on more responsibility to challenge myself and grow as a leader. In these positions, I have worked on quality and process improvement. I oversaw technical support to over 7500 dealers and instilled a team attitude of doing what needs to be done to get the customer taken care of.

Kevin's Answer

Taking on more responsibility, challenging yourself, and taking on leadership tasks are a great start, and definately the signs of being a clutch-player. However, that alone doesn't convey you have the communication skills, the time management or project management skills to navigate the nuanced terrain of being in a management position. Take your answer a step further by providing specifics to your claims of challenging yourself and growing as a leader. What did your experience with quality and process improvement lend to your leadership skills?

“In my lengthy career, working directly with our customer to resolve their concerns and issues, I’ve continually enhanced and adapted systems to always deliver an above and beyond experience. Whether I was leading a team or not, I’ve always led by example, setting the pace and the high standard of over-delivering. I’ve expanded the boundaries of my comfort zone again and again by taking on any and all responsibilities that challenge myself and aid in my growth as a leader. In the positions I’ve held, I’ve improved our output in both quality and quality. I oversaw technical support to over 7500 dealers and instilled a team attitude of exceeding expectations and delivering an unparalleled WOW customer experience. These, among many other reasons, have rendered me to confidence that I am wholly prepared to take the lead.”

question
If you were hired today, what would you accomplish first?

Anonymous Answer

While preparing for this interview, I observed that some of the policies posted on the company's website had been overdue for revision, some as far back as December 2018. I would discuss with my Audit Manager on the need to reach out to the leadership of the Departments involved informing them of our observation and the need to review and approve the policies, to incorporate any changes that might have occurred after the last review date.

Kevin's Answer

Sounds like you have a strong attention to detail, one that is worth advertising. However, you should familiarize yourself with 30-60-90 rule. As it stands, whenever you start in a new position with a new company, you haven’t yet learned the whys of why they do things, nor the priorities your leaders are aware of that you are not yet familiar with. So it is more important to be observant and ask questions. Being presumptive, that just because you observed their website was dated or flawed doesn’t necessarily mean they will prioritize this, nor that they will delegate the responsibility to you just because you noticed it. It very well may be that they are already aware of this, and delegated the task to someone else. However, by adjusting your communication, you can still drive a similar message home.

I’d work on learning the ropes, gaining as much of a big-picture-scope as I can, while building relationships. It’s my philosophy that it’s basically my job to make my bosses’ jobs easier. I have a keen eye for the details, and would point out my observations while asking questions. For example, while preparing for this interview, I observed that some policies posted on the company’s website were outdated and required revision. So, I’d ask my Audit Manager if they were aware of this and see what they had to say. I would gauge if this was a priority, or if there was a reason they sidelined this task. I’d put my all to earn my keep and build the trust of my coworkers to ensure I complimented my new team.

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