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ADTRAN Interview
Questions

29 Questions and Answers by Rachelle Enns
Updated September 7th, 2018 | Rachelle is a job search expert, career coach, and headhunter
who helps everyone from students to fortune executives find success in their career.
Job Interviews     Companies     Business     Communication Services    

Question 1 of 29

When planning, how often do you create alternative scenarios to help you adjust to changing situations?

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Answer Examples

1.

When planning, how often do you create alternative scenarios to help you adjust to changing situations?

Being able to problem solve and think outside the box when it comes to changing situations is a very valuable skill set. Talk to the interviewer about your ability to create a variety of potential scenarios.

Rachelle's Answer #1

"I feel that it is very important to create alternative scenarios in all situations. One cannot guess what will happen in the end, so it is smart to be prepared for all possible outcomes. I try always to create 'what-ifs' because I know that plans change and fail. Plan B - or C or D - is always ready to go."

Michelle's Answer #2

"I love having contingency plans. It's important for my team to understand that ideally we are going to do X, but if that fails, we need to be ready to make sure Y happens. It takes out the uncertainty at the moment and better prepares everyone to adapt if a problem should arise."

2.

At ADTRAN Inc., we value calculated risk. When have you taken an unusual risk in the workplace? What was the outcome?

The interviewer wants to know that you are capable of taking calculated risks in the workplace and that you understand the difference between a calculated risk and a risky choice.

Think of a work-related risk, like trying out a new idea to solve a problem. You may even take on a new responsibility that you're not trained in, which is a little bit of a risk. Give an example that shows you are thoughtful and strategic when taking risks.

Rachelle's Answer #1

"Last month I took an unusual risk by accepting an outside sales call when I am an inside sales employee. An existing client asked me to meet him because he had some additional business he was thinking of awarding our company, but he wanted to make sure we had a strong rapport before he handed the business over. I met him in person, and we got along so well that he gave me an additional $1M in annual business. I knew it was a risk because my traditional area of expertise is inside sales accounts, but I knew the reward was greater than the potential risk, so I took it. It was well worth it!"

Michelle's Answer #2

"I certainly took a risk by leaving my strategic account management position to take an entry sales position in another organization. My family thought I was nuts. But, while it was risky, I wanted to get into sales and I wanted to experience a startup environment. It worked out great, as I got basic sales experience, and then have been steadily promoted since. My career has moved in an upward trajectory so much faster since I took that leap of faith."

3.

How often do you discuss work with your colleagues, in order to think up new systems and styles of working?

Do you use your creative mind with your colleagues to discuss ideas and systems in the workplace? Talk to the interviewer about how you have used creative thinking in the workplace and how this will benefit ADTRAN Inc., if hired.

Rachelle's Answer #1

"I have a policy with my team that if they have an innovative and helpful idea they can bring it to me at any time. If their idea or system is something that I think could work, we then create a plan, and sometimes even a prototype, together to present to our head office. This policy has generated some powerful ideas in our office over the past three years including a work-share program and some health and safety initiatives."

Michelle's Answer #2

"I think it is important to discuss work with colleagues in a collaborative nature to encourage all types of ideas to come forth. Often, when people put their heads together, they will create something better than something one individual could have done alone. I'm a big fan of the improv comedy philosophy of 'Yes, and,' in which team members always say, 'yes' to one another's ideas and then try to build on them to make them more viable."

4.

We value effective communication at ADTRAN Inc. Would you say you are a better oral or written communicator?

In which manner do you prefer to communicate - oral or verbal? Discuss your preference with the interviewer and support your answer.

Rachelle's Answer #1

"I believe both oral and written communication are important for business success, and each has its strengths. I feel confident in both - in-person communication can be valuable for reading facial expressions, body language, etc., while written communication is ideal for establishing a record of important information. Over the course of my career, I've tried very hard to hone skills in both areas so that I'm a well-rounded, strong communicator."

Michelle's Answer #2

"I do not lean one way or another when it comes to oral or written communication. Both are equally important to me. If I have to choose just one, I will choose written communication as one can always refer back to written communication for reference."

5.

At ADTRAN Inc., we give everyone the opportunity to be a mentor. Have you had the opportunity to teach an important skill to a co-worker?

Interviewers want to hear that you have experience teaching or mentoring other employees one-on-one. You may have taught a new hire all of your department's standard processes. Perhaps you taught a long-standing employee how to use Excel. You may have mentored an employee who was struggling to hit monthly goals. All of these scenarios are great examples to draw on.

Rachelle's Answer #1

"I have always enjoyed the opportunity to teach or mentor my colleagues. For example, last month our company introduced a new module in our SAP system, and I could see that one of our team members was having some trouble with the new module. I was familiar with it already, so I offered to help him. We spent his lunch hour for the next three days working on it. He eventually perfected his interaction with the module, and he's now teaching others."

Michelle's Answer #2

"Absolutely. In each of my two previous roles, I have been tasked with leading a small team. I have worked on everything from appointment-setting and overcoming objections to price negotiations with those respective teams. What's more, I always look for an opportunity to connect with new team members. I try to always invite them out for coffee so they not only have a friendly face in the office, but also know that I can be a resource for them. I was promoted from their role, so I am always happy to share how I did it on such a fast timeline and what I've found effective that can help them be a change-maker in the company, too."

6.

Give me an example of a time when you had to troubleshoot to solve a problem.

Troubleshooting is like reverse engineering - it takes skill, effort, and patience. You have to understand the problem to know how to work backward from it to find a solution.

Knowing how to solve problems with technical equipment is always a solid skill, and a great way to demonstrate your example. Show that you are insightful in your approach.

Rachelle's Answer #1

"Last week, while working in our new SAP system, I received a repeated error. I entered in a few different codes, but that didn't solve the issue. I then did a hard reset on my system. Then, I referred to the user guide for additional suggestions. It took a little time and patience, but I was able to resolve the issue without calling the support line and waiting on hold. It felt like a major accomplishment!"

Michelle's Answer #2

"We do not have an IT department in my current office, so whenever a technical issue arises, I am the person my team calls for help. Troubleshooting is fun for me - it's like a new challenge every time. Google and IT-related forums are often my best friend, and with some time and research, I've been able to solve the issues my team brings to me."

7.

Do you prefer doing work on a routine day-to-day basis or do you prefer mixing up your routine occasionally?

Are you the individual who prefers to know what the routine will be, or do you thrive on the challenge and excitement of unpredictability? The interviewer would like to know if your work style will be a fit with ADTRAN Inc.

Rachelle's Answer #1

"Actually, I thrive in both environments. I feel I perform well when I have routine, day-to-day tasks that can be fine-tuned and perfected over time, but I really shine when I get to solve problems while dealing with unexpected developments with a project or initiative. A healthy mix of both is the best environment for me."

Michelle's Answer #2

"I like to have a bit of both, honestly. I have a general schedule that I follow in the morning including a team huddle, setting objectives for the day, following up with clients, and then setting new meetings with prospects. That said, the in-between of that framework is always pretty unpredictable. In sales, you never know what might happen, especially when selling a product, as I do. More often than not, there is some challenge or drama throughout the day (or 20), so that variety keeps me on my toes, engaged and excited."

8.

At your current or former place of employment, how important was communication and dealing with others?

Are you accustomed to working in an environment where clear communication with others is critical? Talk to the interviewer about your most recent work and how communication played a part.

Rachelle's Answer #1

"In my previous role, healthy communication was required to protect the safety of our employees. We transported dangerous goods, and our management required that we all take specific workshops on team communication and appropriate documentation. The company was committed to upholding the body of research that shows that teams who communicate better also perform better. Because of this, I feel confident in my prior training and am sure that my communication skills are solid."

Michelle's Answer #2

"I currently do not enjoy a healthy level of team communication in my workplace - communication skills are neither required nor modeled by our management team. This is part of the reason I am seeking new employment. I highly value clear communication and believe I do my best work within teams who are highly communicative and collaborative. How do you encourage strong communication among employees here at ADTRAN?"

9.

At ADTRAN Inc., we greatly value collaboration, which hinges on exceptional communication. Tell me about a time when your communication skills greatly benefited your team.

Strong communication skills are required to be an effective leader. How have your communication skills helped your team in the past, and how will they help the team at ADTRAN Inc.?

Rachelle's Answer #1

"There's a lot of great research available showing that teams that communicate well are able to complete projects in a quicker and more efficient way than those who don't communicate well. They also are more accurate in their work. This is the kind of teamwork I try to encourage among my colleagues - I believe in regular touch-base appointments - both for the whole team and for individual members - plus regular written communication that can be archived and accessed at a later date for clarity."

Michelle's Answer #2

"Communication is so important within an organization, especially when it comes to implementing major initiatives. We recently rolled out a large organizational change at my company, and I took a transparent approach to communication throughout the process. I asked my team for feedback and buy-in early in the process. We discussed some challenges that could be expected and how to mitigate them, so the team felt well-prepared. When the time came to roll out the change, there were very few surprises and the transition was surprisingly smooth."

10.

What do you know about the company culture at ADTRAN Inc.?

Company culture and fit is a significant factor when considering a career move. Assure the interviewer that you have put thought, research, and consideration of how the company culture at ADTRAN Inc. will work for you.

Rachelle's Answer #1

"I have researched ADTRAN Inc., and I can tell that and with my own personal and professional ambition, I'd like to be part of this type of culture. I'm drawn to your mission: to be a trusted provider of global communications solutions, to develop innovative technologies and to foster an entrepreneurial environment. I believe this is the kind of environment in which I can thrive."

Michelle's Answer #2

"I believe that ADTRAN Inc. wants to provide the very best for its customers. That's the kind of ambition I admire and would like to be part of. I appreciate ADTRAN Inc.'s emphasis on vision and innovation, plus its commitment to providing telecom solutions that make people's lives better. In particular, I look forward to being the kind of team member described in ADTRAN's mission statement: one who exhibits an unwavering commitment to personal integrity and who supports customers beyond their expectations."

11.

We often present to a variety of groups at ADTRAN Inc. What is your comfort level here? Tell me about your experience giving presentations in front of large groups.

Public speaking can be intimidating, so assure the interviewer that you are capable of communicating well in front of large groups. Have you taken any courses or training in public speaking? Perhaps you have so much experience that it comes second nature. Assure the interviewer that you are capable of giving presentations should it be required in your role with ADTRAN Inc.

Rachelle's Answer #1

"In my last two roles I have been responsible for regularly presenting to my team of 43 staff as well as to our entire warehouse team of more than 200. I have also been part of my local Toastmasters group, which helped a great deal. Overall, I feel that I am a confident public speaker."

Michelle's Answer #2

"I do not have a lot of experience in presenting to large groups, but I do present regularly to groups averaging around 4 to 6 people. I am a confident speaker in that setting and am sure that I could present in front of many people - I'd be happy to take on that challenge."

12.

What excites you?

Every hiring manager wants to know how to keep you best motivated and excited about the job. Talk to the interviewer about what excites you and keeps you happy at work.

Rachelle's Answer #1

"I have a healthy competitive edge, even if its a personal competition. For me, I am excited and motivated by winning, whether that be winning over a new client, exceeding my KPIs or being recognized for a job well done. I am also motivated and energized by a strong team that supports and challenges one another."

Michelle's Answer #2

"I get excited when new challenges are presented in the workplace. This could include a new program, a new customer initiative, a sales contest, or even the training of a new employee. A fresh problem to solve or a fresh obstacle to conquer is highly motivating and exciting for me."

13.

When entering a new job, describe how you build relationships with your new coworkers and supervisors.

Due to a wide variety of personalities, relationships can take time to form. How do you ensure that you have a strong line of communication with your co-workers and supervisors, right from the start?

Rachelle's Answer #1

"I believe the first few weeks of any new position should be devoted to listening and understanding the culture, landscape, needs and expectations of team members and colleagues. In previous positions, I have found 'listening tours,' valuable, in which I schedule coffees, lunches or short meetings with as many colleagues as possible during the first few weeks to discuss their challenges, successes and expectations for the position. This sets us up as collaborators from the very beginning."

Michelle's Answer #2

"First impressions are everything, and I make a strong attempt to build relationships with all of my peers right up front when starting a new job. I schedule meetings to make an introduction and ask discovery questions to learn how I can best support them when working together. It is also important to gain insight into their preferred methods of communication. Also important, I try very quickly to show an interest in their lives outside of work - who they are, their hobbies, their families, etc., so that it's clear that I value them as individuals, not just as professional roles."

14.

If ADTRAN Inc. hired you today, what would you accomplish first?

When you start a new position, it is essential to set a goal on how you will make a positive impact quickly after being hired. Tell the interviewer what your impact goal is, should you be the successful candidate and hired at ADTRAN Inc.

Rachelle's Answer #1

"My first priority would be soaking up as much information about culture, process and KPIs as possible. I'd embark on a 'listening tour' in order to engage in deep conversation with my team and with my colleagues to discover the greatest current needs and how to prioritize them based on company goals for the quarter. Overall, I would strive to meet or exceed all KPIs for the business quarter as efficiently as possible."

Michelle's Answer #2

"If hired today, I would start with analyzing all quantifiable data from the last month, quarter and year to identify any challenges and set a plan to address them. I'd also look for team and company strengths in order to capitalize on or expand them in order to increase the company's bottom line. Overall, I'd be looking for patterns that help me make an immediate contribution to the team and the organization."

15.

We like to empower our employees here at ADTRAN Inc. Tell me about a time when you undertook a project that demanded a lot of initiative.

This interview question allows you to demonstrate your ability to be a self-starter. Show the interviewer that you are a motivated individual by telling the interviewer about a specific time that you took the lead. Include details of your project timeline, which you led, or what you had to teach yourself for the project to be successful. Be sure to also emphasize the outcome.

Rachelle's Answer #1

"We recently had a major inventory count requested of us by the corporate head office. At the time, our manager was away on vacation. No one quite knew where to start or who should take the lead. I took the initiative to lead my co-workers through the inventory project. I taught myself the tracking software in a short amount of time and created a schedule so that everyone knew what was expected of them, and we completed the project three days ahead of schedule! It was a great success."

Michelle's Answer #2

"We recently switched over our entire leadership team at the same time we were updating our team's compensation plan, so it was a lot of organizational change for the team to process. I took the initiative to manage the culture during this time by reaching out to all associates individually to gain their feedback on what compensation they would like to see in our change. I explained some possible options and gained their feedback on the new leadership team. This, on top of my day-to-day responsibilities, demanded strong time management skills, organization and initiative. However, I was able to guide our associates through a seamless compensation transition while gaining strong feedback on leadership changes."

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29 ADTRAN Interview Questions
Win your next job by practicing from our question bank. We have thousands of questions and answers created by interview experts.

Interview Questions

  1. When planning, how often do you create alternative scenarios to help you adjust to changing situations?
  2. At ADTRAN Inc., we value calculated risk. When have you taken an unusual risk in the workplace? What was the outcome?
  3. How often do you discuss work with your colleagues, in order to think up new systems and styles of working?
  4. We value effective communication at ADTRAN Inc. Would you say you are a better oral or written communicator?
  5. At ADTRAN Inc., we give everyone the opportunity to be a mentor. Have you had the opportunity to teach an important skill to a co-worker?
  6. Give me an example of a time when you had to troubleshoot to solve a problem.
  7. Do you prefer doing work on a routine day-to-day basis or do you prefer mixing up your routine occasionally?
  8. At your current or former place of employment, how important was communication and dealing with others?
  9. At ADTRAN Inc., we greatly value collaboration, which hinges on exceptional communication. Tell me about a time when your communication skills greatly benefited your team.
  10. What do you know about the company culture at ADTRAN Inc.?
  11. We often present to a variety of groups at ADTRAN Inc. What is your comfort level here? Tell me about your experience giving presentations in front of large groups.
  12. What excites you?
  13. When entering a new job, describe how you build relationships with your new coworkers and supervisors.
  14. If ADTRAN Inc. hired you today, what would you accomplish first?
  15. We like to empower our employees here at ADTRAN Inc. Tell me about a time when you undertook a project that demanded a lot of initiative.
  16. Work volumes can become very high at ADTRAN Inc. How do you handle a larger than average workload?
  17. Tell me about an error or mistake you made because of a breakdown in communication from you or one of your team members.
  18. At ADTRAN Inc., we take great pride in how our team members present themselves in writing. How would you describe your written communication skills?
  19. What experience do you have using team-based messaging applications?
  20. How do you handle a situation where your supervisor does not properly communicate information to you?
  21. We value communication at ADTRAN Inc. Rate your communication skills from 1-10 with proper examples backing your given rating.
  22. Tell me about a time when you improved communication between yourself and a co-worker or client.
  23. How can ADTRAN Inc. motivate you, as a leader?
  24. We appreciate innovative thinking at ADTRAN Inc. When have you created a new product or service?
  25. When a major problem arises, what is your first reaction?
  26. If you were given a choice, which work related task would you leave for last? Why?
  27. ADTRAN Inc. encourages continued education. Tell me about a time when you took on a new course to study in order to improve your own work performance.
  28. How do you handle communicating bad news to a fellow worker or subordinate?
  29. When have you shown a willingness to learn a new method or new approach to solving a problem?
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