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Equity Financial Trust Company Interview
Questions

27 Questions and Answers by
| Ryan has over 10 years of experience interviewing
candidates in the healthcare, public service, and private manufacturing/distribution industries.

Question 1 of 27

Talk to me about a challenging situation you had to handle on the job that involved another colleague. How did you handle that situation?

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Equity Financial Trust Company Interview Questions

  1. 1.

    Talk to me about a challenging situation you had to handle on the job that involved another colleague. How did you handle that situation?

      At the heart of this question, your interviewer is looking to hear how you use solid interpersonal and relationship building skills to diffuse a difficult situation with a coworker when on the job. No matter what situation that you talk about, make sure to focus your answer on a positive mindset and the steps that you walked through to turn a potentially hazardous situation into a good one. As well, talk about lessons learned from that situation that you keep with you to this day on the job.

      Ryan's Answer #1

      "A couple of years ago, we had hired a new Junior Advisor on to our team and I was tasked with being his mentor. Having mentored several other thriving Junior Advisors prior to him starting, I was excited for the opportunity. Within the first week of him being on the job, I overheard a colleague of mine talking very openly about his disdain for the hire of this new Advisor and witnessing him personally criticizing him in a face-to-face encounter. Immediately, I spoke to my colleague in a private office about my concern over his actions and words towards the new Advisor. Having been a part of the interview process and his early mentorship, I knew that he had the skills to succeed and I reiterated that to my colleague. After agreeing to back off on any private criticizing of the new Advisor and a promise to help mentor him, I learned that direct conversations are the best way to handle workplace conflicts."

      Ryan's Answer #2

      "f"A couple of years ago, I approached a colleague that had missed a deadline or a big audit we were conducting and she completely blew up at my during our conversation. At first, I was very taken aback by her response because I had never witnessed that from her in many years of working together. While remaining calm, I allowed her the opportunity to vent to me and it turns out that she was going through a lot of things in her personal life that were impacting her work. While keeping our project deadlines in mind, I also took a personal approach in letting her know that she could bring these issues to me as both a colleague and a friend and we could work through them together in the future. This approach is vital to any conflicts that can arise with colleagues and one I don't hesitate to take when needed."

  2. 2.

    If you noticed that a company's balance sheet was showing increased amounts of accounts receivables, what future impacts to that company would you consider to be feasible?

      At the root of this question, your interview will be looking to hear that you understand how the different lines on a company's balance sheet are related to each other. In your answer, be sure to point out your understanding of this as your job as an analyst with Equity Financial Trust Company will rely on your ability to do so.

      Ryan's Answer #1

      "An organization's lines on a balance sheet all have impact on other lines. In the case that I was made aware of an increase in accounts receivable for an organization, I would note that cash flow could be directly impacted and give a higher chance that the organization didn't have enough money to operate. As well, the reduced value of assets is a real possibility for that organization."

      Ryan's Answer #2

      "In reality, an increase in amounts receivable can have both a positive and negative impact. In the short term, accounts receivable show up as current-period revenue and have a positive effect on income statements. But over the long-term, a large increase in amounts receivable has a negative impact on cash-flow for the company."

  3. 3.

    At Equity Financial Trust Company, our clients are the lifeblood of our business and we do everything in our power to make them happy. What does the term customer service mean to you in your work?

      No matter what position you are interviewing for at Equity Financial Trust Company, your interviewer is looking to hear what customer service means to you in your work and how you apply that philosophy in your everyday work life. In essence, they want to hear your story as to why solid customer service is important to you. Prior to your interviewer, be sure to really think about this question to apply what is important to you in how you go about your work. Whether you talk about problem solving or making people happy, this should be reflected in the work that you do.

      Ryan's Answer #1

      "A pursuit of a career in the financial field really suited my two passions in life of mathematics and problem solving. In this role, helping clients solve problems in an efficient manner and with a smile on my face would be the drive to succeed that I need. At the end of the day, if I see that my work helped a client grow their wealth and achieve their financial goals, I know that it was a job well done."

      Ryan's Answer #2

      "As a people person by nature, I have an innate ability to do what is needed to give customers the best experience possible when I'm working with them. This means that I reflectively listen to their needs and concerns and do what is necessary to help them based on what I heard. In my interactions with customers, I am positive, pleasant and nurturing by nature and I've found that customers are very receptive to my style off communication with them. If hired for this role at Equity Financial Trust Company, you'll quickly find that dedicated customer service is one of top qualities that I will bring to you team."

  4. 4.

    Give an example of a time that you had to resolve a difficult situation with a client or customer. What were the keys to coming to a successful solution?

      In a front facing role with Equity Financial Trust Company where you will be interacting with clients on a daily basis, your interviewer wants to be ensured that you have the skills to resolve client issues with ease and they'll look to do so with this question. In your answer, let your interviewer know that you can take ownership of any situation by talking about a specific time where you did what was necessary to alleviate a difficult situation with a client. Talk about the resources that you used and your interpersonal skills that helped turn a potentially bad situation into a successful one.

      Ryan's Answer #1

      "Having worked in customer service for one of the areas largest auto dealership for the last six years, handling difficult customers was a situation I had to learn to handle pretty quickly. Just a few weeks ago, I was covering our front desk on a Saturday afternoon when our sales staff was still open for business. I recognized the person approaching the door as a customer that had recently purchased a new vehicle. He stormed through the door, placed his keys on the counter in front of me and said that he demanded a refund on his new purchase because the check engine light had already come on inside of the car. Knowing off the top of my head that his new vehicle was under a full warranty, I calmly let him know that his car was under warranty and that I'd have a member of our sales staff come out and take a quick look. I also let him know that our service department was not working that afternoon and, if needed, we could schedule him for a diagnostic test at his earliest convenience. After our salesman went out to take a quick look and not seeing anything obvious, we ended up giving him a loaner vehicle so his new car could be taken care of on Monday morning. He ended up leaving pretty happy that day and I know that my patience in hearing him out really helped."

      Ryan's Answer #2

      "A couple of years ago, I was asked to work with a very high profile client for his financial advising services when he came to our firm because my CEO trusted I could handle what he felt would be a difficult task. From my first meeting with the client, he demanded that we provide more returns than the previous firm that he worked with and he was rather rude with our front desk staff. I took the approach of taking the time to listen to his needs and speak to him more about what my firm could provide. I laid out my experience and track record for him to help him build his trust in me. I knew that with him, I would need to take time to walk through my decision making processes for his investments and he really appreciated that. As of today, we are still working strong together and his wealth is growing."

  5. 5.

    We are looking for the most motivated individuals to join the team here at Equity Financial Trust Company. Where you would you like your career to take you in the next five to ten years?

      This common interview question put you in a tough spot where you should talk about your ultimate career goals while also balancing the needs of the position that you are interviewing for and the needs of Equity Financial Trust Company. Prior to your interviewer, try to research the job and Equity Financial Trust Company to the point where you can match your career goals with they Equity Financial Trust Company offers. While your interviewer is looking for a long-term fit for the position they are interviewing you for, it is okay to set your sights higher as long as your goals meet that of the organization's goals. If at all possible during your answer, point out that long-term success with Equity Financial Trust Company is vitally important to you.

      Ryan's Answer #1

      "Now that I am to the midway point of my career, I am looking for my next move to be my final move in finding my work home until I retire. As a successful Financial Advisor today, I want to focus on continuing to grow my skills in advising clients on retirement and private wealth management and it sounds like I'll have that opportunity here at Equity Financial Trust Company. As I continue to grow in my skills and prove my worth to you, a long-term career goal is to be in management where I could oversee the work of Junior Advisors and mentor them towards success."

      Ryan's Answer #2

      "A career in risk analysis has been a dream for some time and this opportunity with Equity Financial Trust Company is really my dream job. If hired here, my goal for the next five to ten years would be to continue to hone my skills and help the work of the department to a point where it is growing and becoming more effective. Down the road, I'm really in a position to be an open book when it comes to where my career with Equity Financial Trust Company would go from there."

  6. 6.

    Tell me about the largest financial portfolio you have been responsible for.

      Chances are you have gained a lot of momentum through your financial services career; likely being responsible for a larger portfolio every year. Assure the interviewer that you can handle the level of responsibility they are expecting to hand over to you.

      Ryan's Answer #1

      "My responsibilities have always increased over time and in my last position I was responsible for a portfolio of $$$. Can you share with me the size of portfolio that I would be working with here at Equity Financial Trust Company?"

      Ryan's Answer #2

      "I am newer to my financial services career and have worked very hard to develop a strong portfolio this past year. Currently my portfolio is worth $$. What size of portfolio would I be responsible for at Equity Financial Trust Company?"

  7. 7.

    If hired for this role at Equity Financial Trust Company, I want to be sure that I'm hiring a motivated individual. What motivates you in your daily work and your career?

      In the financial services field, you should have strong personal motivation to succeed in your work and your interviewer is asking this question to see what it is that make you tick while on the job. While being open and honest in how you stay motivated on the job, make sure that your answer doesn't include collecting a paycheck every week or two. While money is certainly a motivator in this field, make sure that you use it in an appropriate context if you decide to talk about the financial piece of this business as being a motivator. In the end, your interviewer is looking to get a sense of how he or she will be able to keep you hungry for more if you are hired for this role.

      Ryan's Answer #1

      "I find myself the most motivated on the job when I am being challenged and when I can continue learning new things. From what I've learned in talking to others that currently work here at Equity Financial Trust Company, the fast paced environment and continuous changes in the industry would keep me very motivated in my work and you'd never have to question if I were truly enjoying and being motivated in my work."

      Ryan's Answer #2

      "At a young age, my father taught me to do what I love and love what I do and I know that as I approach the middle years of my career that I made the right career choice. The personal finance field has really blended my love of helping others succeed and my passion for statistics and computers. In this role with Equity Financial Trust Company, I'll be working with your clients everyday on helping them achieve financial success and that alone is all of the reason I need to get out of bed every morning."

  8. 8.

    What do you feel is one unique skill or trait that you could bring to the auditing team here at Equity Financial Trust Company?

      This question is your opportunity to set yourself apart from your competitions as it gives you an open door to match a skill or trait that you have with the exact details for this position. Prior to the interview, be sure to read and research as much as possible on the job and Equity Financial Trust Company to find something unique about yourself that can help benefit the team. Whether you talk about a job skill or a personality trait that you possess that you feel sets you apart, be sure that you are able to talk about this confidently to your interviewer.

      Ryan's Answer #1

      "Being comfortable in my skills and experiences as well qualified internal auditor, I am confident that my attention to detail is one trait that will set me apart from anyone else you are talking to about this position. I am a very organized person that keeps an orderly desk, email inbox and to do list. As well, I know that this position will require me to work with data that goes above and beyond the everyday life of your average auditor and my attention to the minute details will make me an asset to Equity Financial Trust Company."

      Ryan's Answer #2

      "If I was fortunate enough to join the team here at Equity Financial Trust Company, my ability to work independently and make decisions on my own from the start would be a huge asset. You'll find that I don't let outside influence or others influence decisions that I'll make as your auditor and I won't let my own personal judgments influence any of my decisions. As well, I am comfortable working with all levels of an organization, from the C-Suite to the day to day operations staff."

  9. 9.

    Accuracy is important to us at Equity Financial Trust Company. Do you always double check or proofread your work?

      Double checking and proofreading are essential parts of a job well done. Assure the interviewer that you are diligent when it comes to submitting good, clean, work.

      Ryan's Answer #1

      "Spelling and grammatical errors are a pet peeve of mine. I will triple check my work if there is time! I feel that it is imperative to submit error-free work."

      Ryan's Answer #2

      "I do my best to put great work out, at all times. I believe in double checking my work although I must admit that I have fallen victim to the odd mistake like the best of us!"

  10. 10.

    Take a couple of minutes to sell this notepad to me.

      To be successful in the financial advising field, one top key to success is your ability to sell your service to your clients. For this task, your interviewer will slide a notepad (or other item) to you across the table and ask you to sell it to them. First and foremost, your interviewer will be looking for you to project confidence in your pitch and your ability to find their own needs in what they're looking for in a notepad while you give them your pitch. As you sell them the notepad, be sure that you are confident, creative and that you ask questions of them. Overall, see this question as a fun opportunity to show your advising skills in a very nontraditional way and it will be a success for you.

      Ryan's Answer #1

      "Well Mr. Jones, I know in your line that you definitely in high need of notepads to help you succeed in your industry and I'm here to show you a new product we have put out to market that can exceed your needs. You'll notice that it features very wide margins that accentuate the note taking procedures for all who use it. You'll also notice that each individual sheet is carefully perforated to make separation from the binding an easy task compared to other notepads. The last feature of our new notepad is that it comes in many different paper colors that suit your needs. If you want, take this sample to your office for a week and put it to use. If you and your staff would make use of it, I can set you up with your first shipment in no time!"

      Ryan's Answer #2

      "Mrs. Jones, we at Notepads, Inc. are excited to announce a new line of notepads for our exclusive customers. If you can, tell me a bit about your frustrations with your current line of notepads that you use. Wow, thank you for that. I can tell that functionality, cost and supply are all issues that are of concern and I'm happy to tell you that this fantastic notepad meets your needs with the brightest white paper, narrow ruled, right priced and readily available features. I'd like to talk about you further about pricing and delivery options when you are ready."

  11. 11.

    Every employee with Equity Financial Trust Company is expected to be sales-minded and target driven. Walk me through your experience in sales based roles.

      Briefly take the interviewer through your sales based work history. Be sure to highlight your best results. This is where it is very important to know your sales numbers before walking into your interview.

      Ryan's Answer #1

      "I have been in a sales based role for the past 10 years. With Company A, my best year I finished 125% to quota. With Company B, I began from the ground up and left with a portfolio of business worth $$$. In my last position, with Company C, I was the top grossing financial services employee in our branch at 167% to target."

      Ryan's Answer #2

      "At this point in my career I do not have a lot of financial sales related experience; however, I am well versed in a variety of business development and cold calling techniques. I fully understand how to build a sales pipeline and see the importance of building a referrals based business."

  12. 12.

    This position at Equity Financial Trust Company has generate a lot of interest from applicants. What do you feel is the one quality that sets you apart from others we are speaking with about this position?

      This question is the perfect opportunity for you to highlight the one key quality that makes you the best person for this position, so be sure to really think about what this one quality is ahead of your interview. While there are many ways that you can take you answer to impress your interviewer and seal the deal for you in getting the job, be sure to avoid making assumptions about the other candidates in your answer. As well, be sure to avoid anything in your answer that points to this job being convenient for you personally or the fact that you'll be getting compensated for this work. Those are quick ways for you to go to the bottom of the candidate ranking list.

      Ryan's Answer #1

      "As I've talked about during this interview process and from what you can see on my resume, I have all of the technical skills needed to grow your financial advising practice here at Equity Financial Trust Company. What sets me apart from my competition is my drive to succeed in this industry and I'd love to bring that drive to Equity Financial Trust Company to help working with your highest profile clients possible. Growing up and continuing to this point in my life, I've always been a very competitive person. I've played many team and individual sports my whole life and my drive to win in those has definitely carried over to and been a huge benefit in my work as a Financial Advisor. I'd love to bring this competitive spirit to your team."

      Ryan's Answer #2

      "From what I understand about this role in Client Services with Equity Financial Trust Company, my day to day work will include a lot of client interaction and I really feel like the job description was written with my skills and abilities in mind. But the thing that will really set me apart for being the perfect fit for this role is my experience on the sales side of things where I spent five years of my working career in the retail sales industry. In sales, I have developed key skills like product knowledge and selling skills that would be very beneficial to this role."

  13. 13.

    Equity Financial Trust Company strives for client loyalty to keep us running strong into the future. What do you feel are the keys to retaining clients for the long haul?

      Businesses in financial advising are constantly pushing the limits to ensure that they retain clients and Equity Financial Trust Company doesn't take client retention lightly. One slip up and a high profile client will be taking their business to a competitor. For this question, your interviewer will be looking to hear that you understand your role in the customer retention equation and how you take pride in that in your everyday work. Make sure to hit on the point that doing the small things, like prompt communication and follow up, go a long way towards keeping clients happy.

      Ryan's Answer #1

      "I learned a few very important things from a senior mentor early in my career that I still hold near and dear to my heart to this day. First, clients expect me to be responsive to their needs to ensure that they keep their business with me. Because of this, I return phone calls and emails as soon as I can, even if that means in the evening, the early morning or on a Sunday afternoon. These small actions go a long way in showing my clients that I care. Another key to the success of my long-term clients is my ability to set and manage expectations for them. Clients desire to have a plan and know what that plan entails and I pride myself on my ability to work with them to set goals and a plan to achieve those goals."

      Ryan's Answer #2

      "Having lost clients in the past that went to another firm, I take that pain personally and do everything I can do to ensure long lasting relationships with my clients. For me, the first key to long term success with my clients is a proactive approach. I don't wait for clients to get in touch with me to make changes to their portfolio, I reach out to them. This action alone shows my clients that I am working for their best interest. Another action I take that shows my worth to my clients are goal tracking and quarterly progress reports that I send out to them. This is particularly helpful for clients that are working with me in their first two years."

  14. 14.

    Give me an example of a time that you had to solve a problem without having all of the necessary information at hand to do so. How did you handle that situation?

      For this question, your interviewer is looking to test your ability to be analytical and resourceful in a specific situation where you had to dig further to solve a problem. Prior to your interview, try to think of a time in the past where you encountered this specific situation and talk through it by laying out the problem and walking through the step-by-step approach you took to solve the problem. Try to be as detailed you can as you explain how you thought the problem out and worked hard to use the resources you could to help solve the problem. Your interviewer will be relying on these fine details to truly see how you will perform on the job with Equity Financial Trust Company.

      Ryan's Answer #1

      "Back when I first joined my current organization, I was taking a role that had been vacant for many months and I had to start with a backlog of work along with the regular daily activities. This customer service role included logging daily visitors and calls and the interim rep only kept brief notes. After taking the time to walk through training and getting running on my own, I realized that the current workload wouldn't allow me to catch up on the backlog of work that had been missed. While I had ideas of how to play catch up on the work, I approached my supervisor with a few ideas and we settled on having me log hours from home on our system as overtime to get caught up. I worked with our IT staff on getting set up on our network from home and was more that willing to help out with some extra hours."

      Ryan's Answer #2

      "Working for a large financial institution, our advisory staff help cover for each other when we are on vacation, sick or simply out of office for the day. We typically team up in group of three to help provide coverage for each other. A couple of months ago, I fielded a call from a colleague's client while she was away on vacation and completely out of phone coverage. The client had several questions about their personal finances that I couldn't help resolve off the top of my head. I let them know that their advisor was away on vacation but I would take the next hour to research their questions and get back to them shortly. This was a very acceptable path of action to the client and I took the time to get their questions answered quickly."

  15. 15.

    If hired for this position at Equity Financial Trust Company, what factors would you consider part as part of an organization's long-term liability?

      To begin for this question, make sure that you can define a long-term liability as obligations that are due beyond one year and into the future. Then, consider major factors like bonds, mortgages, leases and other items that factor in to an organization's long-term liability. Last, try to explain why the measurement of long-term liabilities are important is an important factor in considering the overall financial health of an organiation.

      Ryan's Answer

      "While long-term liabilities aren't an immediate issue on a companies working capital, the can become an issue if long-term liabilities pile up too high for some organizations. While often overlooked, items like mortgages, fleet vehicle loans and annuities can add up over time and are always items that I consider when looking at the overall health of an organization."

  16. 16.

    We want our advising team at Equity Financial Trust Company to be happy and healthy. How do you manage the day to day stress of being a financial advisor?

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  17. 17.

    What is the most attractive thing in your eyes about this role with Equity Financial Trust Company?

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  18. 18.

    Why would our clients here at Equity Financial Trust Company want you to be their financial advisor?

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  19. 19.

    Our auditing process here at Equity Financial Trust Company is very detailed. Can you walk me through your typical audit workflow in your current role?

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  20. 20.

    Our clients here at Equity Financial Trust Company expect top-tier service and products and we will expect you to do just that in this role. Have you ever went the extra mile for a client when it wasn't expected? Why did you do so?

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  21. 21.

    When have you shown a willingness to learn a new method or new approach to solving a problem?

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  22. 22.

    If you were having an interaction with a client here at Equity Financial Trust Company and you weren't able to answer their question or solve their problem on your own, how would you handle that situation?

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  23. 23.

    At Equity Financial Trust Company, our Financial Analysts have to often work under a tight deadline. Talk about a time you had to work under a tight deadline in the past. How did you handle that situation and what made it a success?

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  24. 24.

    In your experience as a Financial Analyst, what do you feel is the best metric to gauge a company's future stock performance?

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  25. 25.

    In this role with Equity Financial Trust Company, we will rely on your organized and methodical approach to provide financial analysis reporting. What does your current reporting process consist of?

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  26. 26.

    Our customers rely on our services outside of normal business hours. Are you able to work a flexible schedule if hired for this position?

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  27. 27.

    Have you ever run into a situation where a company had a positive cash flow but was still in critical financial trouble?

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