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Cobham plc Interview
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29 Questions and Answers by Rachelle Enns

Updated August 21st, 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     Engineering     Aerospace And Defense    
Question 1 of 29
If you were given a choice, which work related task would you leave for last? Why?
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How to Answer
Often we will leave the tasks that we don't like for last, in the act of procrastination. Other times, we will mindfully move responsibility for last because we feel that it makes the most sense. Help the interviewer to determine which personality type you are by answering this question.
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1.
If you were given a choice, which work related task would you leave for last? Why?
Often we will leave the tasks that we don't like for last, in the act of procrastination. Other times, we will mindfully move responsibility for last because we feel that it makes the most sense. Help the interviewer to determine which personality type you are by answering this question.

Rachelle's Answer #1
"If given a choice, I would leave my documentation tasks for last. I say this because I like to spend my time with my customers so anything to do with documentation during business hours - I feel takes away from my client-facing tasks. I do understand the importance of it, though."
Rachelle's Answer #2
"I would leave my email to last! I find that once I am in my email, it's a never-ending whirlwind of small replies and to-dos. For this reason, and to remain focused and productive, I will schedule my email time periodically throughout the day."
Anonymous Answer
"There is no preference, as it depends on priority. I prioritize my work according to what I estimate is necessary to achieve what I set."
Rachelle's Answer
Your answer shows great diligence in your work.
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2.
How do you manage your time?
What tools do you use to stay on task and meet deadlines? How do you prioritize when everything demands your attention at once? Think about the ways you manage your projects and daily tasks. Do you keep a calendar? Do you set reminders? Sometimes a to-do list is helpful when organizing your time because it can help you prioritize what needs to happen next. Paying attention to which tasks require the most time and which ones bring the most value are ways you can pick and choose what needs to happen in your schedule. What are some ways you have found work best for you to manage your time at work?

Rachelle's Answer #1
"I will determine which project requires my attention by the number of hours we are behind and then the project size. I am comfortable delegating tasks when needed, but I am also aware that these times will require an additional commitment of hours from me. Never have I under delivered on a deadline."
Rachelle's Answer #2
"Time management has been something that I have worked on improving since my time in University. I set goals for myself and attached a time deadline for those goals. Also, I am diligent with the use of my calendar and have a great scheduling app on my phone that I refer to as well."
3.
How have you demonstrated leadership ability when you were not in a leadership role?
This question challenges you to think about how you act as a leader in your daily life. Even if you're not leading a team, you can still demonstrate the qualities of a leader! You can give an example of how you coached a coworker who was having difficulty preparing for a big presentation. Maybe you gave them confidence in their strengths by encouraging them, or perhaps you offered some helpful hints. You can be a motivator and a confident communicator in any situation at work! Share how you have positively influenced others through actions you've taken to support and motivate others at work.

Rachelle's Answer #1
"I demonstrate leadership qualities every chance that I get! I believe that everyone can be a great leader if given the right environment and opportunity."
Rachelle's Answer #2
"I naturally take on a leader and mentor-ship type of role with my co-workers. In one instance, I had a new coworker who was having some troubles fitting in. I took her out for lunch and talked to her a bit about the workplace culture and semantics surrounding the various departments. I wanted her to stay and enjoy her employment with us, so I took the responsibility of ensuring she was settling in well. I believe there are always opportunities for leadership - you have to keep your eyes open."
4.
Who would you say inspires you?
Show you preparedness for the interview by having an immediate answer. The only wrong answer here is, 'I don't know.' In most discussions, you will get one or two personal questions to see how you present yourself. You want to be able to articulate yourself well, responding politely and even passionately when appropriate. An excellent way to respond to this question is by sharing a story about a person who has been a positive influence on you and your career. If your dad motivated you to push through to finish your education, talk about how that impacted you. Who showed you that it was possible to overcome even the most significant obstacles? Who taught you the skills that brought you where you are today?

Rachelle's Answer #1
"My previous manager was a huge inspiration to me. Her passion for the aerospace industry was motivating and put the fire in me to climb the ladder in my career."
Rachelle's Answer #2
"I have always been inspired by my grandfather. He is the person who gave me an initial interest in the aerospace field. He is the hardest working person I know, and he taught me how important it is to read and continually grow. Because of him, I always seek to learn."
5.
Confidentiality is of utmost importance to us at Cobham. Are you willing to sign a confidentiality agreement, if hired?
Many companies involved in Aerospace and Defense have sensitive information. Assure the interviewer that you are a trustworthy individual who can handle being under a confidentiality agreement with Cobham, if hired.

Rachelle's Answer #1
"I am a highly trustworthy person. My background includes many years of experience working on sensitive projects. I fully understand the desire that Cobham has to protect their data and am more than willing to sign a confidentiality agreement."
Rachelle's Answer #2
"Yes, I am willing to sign a confidentiality agreement with Cobham, anytime in this process."
6.
In your opinion, what is the biggest breakthrough in the aerospace and defense industry in the past decade?
The interviewer wants to ensure that you hold strong knowledge, and genuine interest, in the aerospace and defense industry. If you are familiar with the industry, you will know about some of the latest industry breakthroughs. Briefly discuss which one has caught your interest the most.

Rachelle's Answer #1
"There have been endless breakthroughs in our industry; however, I would say the breakthroughs that interest me the most are the ones related to integrated systems and technologies Cobham has created to enhance the operational effectiveness of military aircraft."
Rachelle's Answer #2
"The biggest recent breakthrough in our industry, in my opinion, are the security and systems leaps we have made over the past three years; however, there are so many from which to choose! May I ask which was your favorite breakthrough as of late?"
7.
Do you believe it is possible to be a good team member yet disagree with the leader?
The interviewer wants to know that you can be diplomatic in the workplace, even when you may not agree with your leader.

Show the interviewer that it is possible for you to be a good team member, yet disagree with the leader from time to time. Explain that you believe everyone is entitled to their own professional opinion, yet capable of maintaining respect for each other at the same time.

Show that even if you disagree with the final decision they make, you support the direction the team is heading.

Rachelle's Answer #1
"I think that it is possible to be a great team member, even when disagreeing with the leader. It's all in how you maintain respect for each other despite the difference in opinion."
Rachelle's Answer #2
"Yes, I think it is possible! What makes a great team member is not that they agree with everything but the level of respect and positive thought that goes into the person's communication style. It's okay to disagree; however, you have to communicate your thoughts professionally."
8.
How often do you think of innovations that will improve your work performance?
Coming up with ideas to increase productivity, efficiency and save time and energy is a great way to make an impact on your coworkers and the company.

Having the ability to see problems as opportunities is a skill that can make you an essential asset to a company. Think of a time you had a chance to make a difference by making a change in a process or procedure.

Rachelle's Answer #1
" I would say that at least once a month I have an idea, big or small, that I present to my manager. My most recent innovation was discovering a new way to use our automation software to work for us even more efficiently."
Rachelle's Answer #2
"I am always thinking of new ways to increase productivity and improve the methods I use to complete my work."
9.
How do you define success?
The interviewer wants to know that they are onboarding someone who appreciates that success. What does success mean to you? Tell the interviewer how you see progress and be sure to tie your answer into the success that you plan to bring to this particular position, should you be offered the role.

Rachelle's Answer #1
"I define success by my ability to reach the goals that are set out for me. On a personal level, the things I wish to achieve in my life. On a work level, the targets that are set out for me as well as the professional development that I seek."
Rachelle's Answer #2
"Success is the completion of any task you set out to do or any goal that you set for yourself. Success receives interpretation in many different ways but I know I have been successful when I feel that relief and contentment only accomplishment can bring."
Anonymous Answer
"Success is the completion of a goal you set for yourself or a team."
Rachelle's Answer
Straightforward and simple - good! If you have a recent success, feel free to share.
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10.
At Cobham, we seek to hire only those with aerospace experience. Are you more experienced in the private or public aerospace industry?
Cobham is a British manufacturing company and the 51st largest defense firm in the world. Cobham was founded as Flight Refuelling Limited (FRL) in 1934. The interviewer would like to see that you have experience in the industry; whether your aerospace experience comes from private or public entities. If the job posting from Cobham points out a preference of one over the other, it is wise to focus your answer on that particular experience.

Rachelle's Answer #1
"I noticed in your job posting that you prefer to see experience in the public aerospace sector. I do have experience in both public and private; however, the most recent three years of my work experience is in the public sector."
Rachelle's Answer #2
"I can say that I have equal experience in both public and private aerospace matters. Is there a specific sector where you would prefer to see stronger experience? I would be happy to highlight that experience for you, further."
11.
Would you say you focus more on reasons why change will not work rather than adapting to new changes?
When a change occurs in the workplace do you view it positively or do you resist the change? Talk to the interviewer about how you adapt to change.

Rachelle's Answer #1
"When a change occurs I initially try to balance the pros and the cons before reacting. Overall I would say that I prefer to focus on why the changes will work. I am a positive person by nature."
Rachelle's Answer #2
"Some changes can be tougher to accept immediately than others. Once I understand the motivation or the goal behind the change, I can easily adapt."
12.
Rate your communication skills from 1-10 with proper examples backing your given rating.
On a scale of 1-10, how skilled are you in communication? Why did you choose that particular rating for yourself?

Rachelle's Answer #1
"I rate my communication skills as a 9/10 as I will, on occasion, have times when I am not as clear as I would like to be. My supervisor and co-workers will attest to my clear and concise communication skills. Because I am an open leader, my team will let me know if I need to clarify anything."
Rachelle's Answer #2
"I believe there is always room to improve communication skills so for that reason I will rate myself as an 8/10. I have not received any complaints related to my communication abilities and am quite proud of my oral and written communication skills."
13.
Are you actively interviewing with other companies, and are you close to offer stage with anyone?
The interviewer is looking for answers to a few points when asking this question.

1. The company wants to know what kind of timeline is present before you are scooped up by another organization.
2. They want to know how discerning you are with your job applications.
3. They want to know the types of roles that interest you.
4. They want to hear that they are your top choice.

You can certainly discuss your search but avoid giving too many details. Give the interviewer enough to satisfy the question without revealing your entire search. Some mystery is okay here.

Rachelle's Answer #1
"I recently started my search and had found some interesting job postings related to my degree; however, your role is the position I am most enthusiastic about."
Rachelle's Answer #2
"If you are not interviewing: "I just started my search, so I am not in final interviews with any other company. I am aggressively seeking; however."
14.
Looking at your resume, I see multiple gaps between employments, what were you doing during those gaps?
There are many reasons for having a gap in your resume, and it's best, to be honest about the intentions.

Rachelle's Answer #1
"I had a gap from 2009-2010 while I was on maternity leave and then another for six months in 2015 while I cared for an ailing parent. During that time I was vigilant in keeping up to date on the market so that my knowledge did not become redundant."
Rachelle's Answer #2
"If your employment gap is due to illness: "I took a medical hiatus between 2008 and 2008 under doctor's orders. I am fully recovered and have had zero health concerns since."
15.
What is your current salary?
A potential employer will often base their offer on your current salary. You should be transparent about your most recent earnings and be prepared to back up any salary requests.

If you are currently employed: "I am currently earning a base salary of $78,000, plus a car allowance of $900/month, and health benefits. I am looking for a competitive salary in my next position."
Rachelle's Answer #1
"I am currently earning a base salary of $78,000, plus a car allowance of $900/month, and health benefits. I am looking for a competitive salary in my next position."
Rachelle's Answer #2
"If you are currently unemployed: "My most recent position paid me a base salary of $45,000 plus overtime and health benefits. I am looking for a competitive salary in my next position."
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29 Cobham plc 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. If you were given a choice, which work related task would you leave for last? Why?
  2. How do you manage your time?
  3. How have you demonstrated leadership ability when you were not in a leadership role?
  4. Who would you say inspires you?
  5. Confidentiality is of utmost importance to us at Cobham. Are you willing to sign a confidentiality agreement, if hired?
  6. In your opinion, what is the biggest breakthrough in the aerospace and defense industry in the past decade?
  7. Do you believe it is possible to be a good team member yet disagree with the leader?
  8. How often do you think of innovations that will improve your work performance?
  9. How do you define success?
  10. At Cobham, we seek to hire only those with aerospace experience. Are you more experienced in the private or public aerospace industry?
  11. Would you say you focus more on reasons why change will not work rather than adapting to new changes?
  12. Rate your communication skills from 1-10 with proper examples backing your given rating.
  13. Are you actively interviewing with other companies, and are you close to offer stage with anyone?
  14. Looking at your resume, I see multiple gaps between employments, what were you doing during those gaps?
  15. What is your current salary?
  16. Your workload will be large at Cobham. How do you balance life and work?
  17. How do you think your early career will help you succeed in this position?
  18. How do you like to encourage ideas in others?
  19. Tell me about an achievement you are proud of. What did you find challenging about it?
  20. Looking at your resume, it seems there are certain skills necessary for this position that do not stand out. How do you think you will be able to compensate for these missing skills?
  21. Have you progressed in your career as you have expected?
  22. How do you like to be recognized for your accomplishments?
  23. Many of our industry competitors have their employees under a non-compete contract. Are you bound by any non-compete contract with your current employer?
  24. We are looking for specific post-secondary education for this role. Tell me about your post-secondary education and how it will help you in this position with Cobham.
  25. Our goal is to be the top rated company in our industry. After researching Cobham, what do you think we could improve on?
  26. At Cobham, we have some strong competitors. In your opinion, what makes us stand out from the others?
  27. Because of the nature of business at Cobham, we conduct background checks on employees. This includes criminal background, credit, and education verification checks. Are you willing to comply?
  28. There are numerous career avenues you can take with Cobham. Which career path interests you the most?
  29. The aerospace and defense industry is ever-changing. At Cobham, we seek to hire individuals with a keen interest in this industry. How do you stay up to date on aerospace-related current events?
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