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Exxon Mobil Corporation Interview
Questions

30 Questions and Answers by Rachelle Enns

Published October 30th, 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     Power     Oil And Gas    
Question 1 of 30
Exxon Mobil Corporation operates in many countries. Are you eligible to travel and work around the world?
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How to Answer
Exxon Mobil Corporation may operate in a multitude of regions and the interviewer would like to know that you can accommodate their potential needs as you grow within their organization. Be honest with your answer, but as open as possible. If you have limitations, be sure to discuss them. If you are free and able to travel, you can keep your response straightforward.
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Answer Examples
1.
Exxon Mobil Corporation operates in many countries. Are you eligible to travel and work around the world?
Exxon Mobil Corporation may operate in a multitude of regions and the interviewer would like to know that you can accommodate their potential needs as you grow within their organization. Be honest with your answer, but as open as possible. If you have limitations, be sure to discuss them. If you are free and able to travel, you can keep your response straightforward.

Rachelle's Answer #1
"I am eligible to travel and have no limitations when it comes to working around the world. My passport is valid, and I have a NEXUS border pass."
Michelle's Answer #2
"Could you share with me more about the travel component in this role? I am eligible to travel and willing to, as needed."
2.
At Exxon Mobil, we are committed to positive action on climate change and dedicated to reducing the risk of climate change in the most efficient way for society. What else can you tell me about our position on climate change?
Exxon Mobil Corporation is very open about its position on several important environmental issues, including climate change. Take a few moments before your interview to review some of their statements so that you can speak confidently about where the company stands.

Rachelle's Answer #1
"I appreciate the fact that Exxon is so open about its position on issues like climate change. Making its stance clear gives people a good starting point for any discussions about how Exxon's perspective meshes with their own. I know that Exxon has publicly stated that there is a broad scientific and policy consensus that action must be taken to further quantify and assess the risks of climate change. I'm also aware that Exxon is taking action by reducing greenhouse gas emissions in its operations, helping consumers reduce their emissions, supporting research that leads to technology breakthroughs and participating in constructive dialogue on policy options."
Michelle's Answer #2
"I enjoyed reading and learning more about Exxon's perspective in preparation for this interview. Addressing climate change is a complex issue requiring complex solutions, and I"m happy to see that Exxon is fully engaged in this dialogue. The key challenge is determining how to provide the world with the energy it needs while reducing greenhouse gas emissions. I appreciate that Exxon is an advocate for common sense approaches - substituting natural gas for coal in electrical generation, improving efficiency and using market forces to drive change -- while continuing to fund and participate in research into technology solutions and better understanding of the risks of climate change."
3.
What is OPEC, and why does it matter?
OPEC is the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries. It's an intergovernmental body with a mission to, 'coordinate and unify the petroleum policies of its member countries and ensure the stabilization of oil markets, in order to secure an efficient, economic and regular supply of petroleum to consumers, a steady income to producers, and a fair return on capital for those investing in the petroleum industry.'

Show the interviewer that you have an understanding of OPEC and how it affects the way Exxon Mobil Corporation does business.

Rachelle's Answer #1
"From my understanding, OPEC is a governing body that coordinates and unifies the petroleum policies of approximately 15 countries. OPEC decisions play an important role in the global oil market and can have a direct effect on Exxon's ability to deliver on its mission."
Michelle's Answer #2
"I understand OPEC to be an intergovernmental body that helps regulate the global oil market and international regulations. Could you share with me how OPEC affects the way Exxon Mobil Corporation does business?"
4.
What can you tell me about Exxon's work in the Arctic?
Take the time to research Exxon's history of work in the Arctic as part of your interview preparation. Try to show the interview that you've taken an interest and can speak in general terms about Exxon's history working in the Arctic environment.

Rachelle's Answer #1
"As I understand it, Exxon has a history of work within the Arctic environment that dates as far back as 1920. In fact, with the industry's longest history operating in Arctic conditions in both Arctic and sub-Arctic locations, Exxon is best positioned to unlock the region's vast energy potential. I find it very exciting and would like to be a part of this type of exploration and discovery."
Michelle's Answer #2
"From what I've been able to research about Exxon's work in the Arctic, I believe the company is committed to operating in an environmentally responsible and sustainable way, working with indigenous people to develop resources in a manner compatible with their traditional way of life and the natural environment. With such a depth of knowledge and experience in this type of harsh environment, Exxon is well-positioned to fully understand the environmental conditions in the Arctic and also to unlock the vast energy potential inherent in the region."
5.
What is the most significant achievement you have on the horizon?
When you show that you have goals and achievements on the horizon, you are letting the interviewer know that you put thought into your career and what you bring to your employer. Employees who do not have goals set just beyond their reach are typically disengaged and unmotivated. This achievement does not need to be complicated. It can be as simple as finishing a beautiful Powerpoint presentation, finishing work-related coursework, or reaching a sales target.

Rachelle's Answer #1
"The most significant achievement on the horizon for me is the completion of my Advanced Excel and SAP courses. I have learned a great deal, and have a few modules to go. I look forward to applying these new skills to this role with Exxon."
Michelle's Answer #2
"For the last two years I have been working toward my master's degree in Chemical Engineering while also working full time. This effort has been challenging and rewarding all at the same time. My graduation date is this May, so that is the most significant achievement on the horizon."
6.
When have you had to make a split second decision? How do you react under unexpected pressure?
The interviewer wants to know how you handle pressure when an unexpected stressor arises. Being able to make quick decisions and think fast on your feet sets top-notch professionals out from the crowd. We all make a lot of choices every day, so start by telling the interviewer that you make a lot of quick decisions each day. Next, be prepared for a more significant example that will be sure to impress.

Rachelle's Answer #1
"In my current field admin role, this happens often! We handle a lot of contractor situations surrounding schedule and shift changes. Often, we have guidelines we follow, and there are also times when situations call for creative solutions. I make split-second decisions when resolving contractor matters, always keeping the best interests of the company in mind."
Michelle's Answer #2
"My current position requires me to make tough decisions on a regular basis. I work well under pressure like that. With split-second decisions, I will always go with my initial instinct. Last week, I had two high-profile clients show up for a meeting at the same time. One client was late, and the other was early. I did not want anyone to feel bad for being late or too early, so I had each party placed in a different conference room. My colleague started the meeting with our early meeting while I met with the client who was late. It worked out well because I am no stranger to multi-tasking and I have great support staff."
7.
What type of work environment allows you to be the most productive?
The interviewer would like to know how to ensure a healthy level of productivity from you. Are you able to be productive in any environment or are there particular types of situations that you find distracting? Discuss your preferences with the interviewer. Be sure to research the kind of environment that offered at Exxon Mobil Corporation before the interview.

Rachelle's Answer #1
"I understand that your work environment is very collaborative. I come from a similar environment and have found that I can be very productive when there is the 'buzz' of a team around me. I can also be productive in quieter environments although that isn't my preference."
Michelle's Answer #2
"I work well in a high pressure, demanding environment that requires me to work smart and make my mark. I am competitive and love a significant challenge. How would you best describe the work environment at Exxon Mobil?"
8.
What have you done to improve your oil and gas knowledge in the last year?
The interviewer wants to know that you are interested in your industry, and career growth, enough to take your professional development into your own hands. Even if your current employer does not offer perks like oil industry conferences or financial reimbursement for additional coursework, there is no reason why you cannot take the initiative.

You could:

- Read industry or career-related books
- Subscribe to relevant podcasts
- Enhance your education with an additional certificate
- Attend a conference related to your career or personal growth
- Teach yourself a new software program
- Read established journals and websites on a regular basis
- Find a mentor who is senior to you, in your particular industry or career path

Rachelle's Answer #1
"It is important to me that I continue to grow as a professional oil and gas administrator. This year I took an Advanced Excel course so that I could take my competency from intermediate to expert. The course has helped me immensely, and I am currently looking into a leadership workshop as well."
Michelle's Answer #2
"The oil and gas industry is always changing, and it's vital that I continue to gain knowledge to keep up with the latest and greatest! I refer on a daily basis to a variety of energy-related journals and publications such as Oilweek, Midstream Business, and Gas & Oil magazine. I am also currently beginning the process of gaining my project management certification so that I'm up-to-speed on best practices for successfully managing large projects on behalf of Exxon."
9.
What is the difference between a leader and a manager?
The interviewer would like to know that you understand what makes a leader genuinely stand out. Just because you are a manager, that does not mean you are a leader.

A real leader is someone who makes others want to jump on board with their mission and follow them. A manager is just someone who has people under them. To be an excellent leader, you should offer a balance between the two. You need to be able to have people buy into your vision but at the same time, show authority when necessary.

Rachelle's Answer #1
"A manager is someone who has a team of people who answer to them. That person simply has the responsibility of 'managing' the team's work. A leader, on the other hand, is someone of influence and, I believe, anyone can be a leader - no matter their job title or position."
Michelle's Answer #2
"To me, leadership is a mindset versus a title. A manager is more of a job title. Anyone can possess leadership skills, but a great manager will have leadership skills along with the ability to direct his or her team to success."
10.
Is compensation the most important factor for you when taking a new job?
The interviewer would like to know how much emphasis you put on pay when considering a new position. In addition to compensation, there are many other factors to a fulfilling career. These other factors may include:

- work/life balance
- amount of travel involved in the role
- overall medical and health benefits
- additional perks such as car allowance, cell allowance, spending account
- the industry you will be working in
- amount of vacation time
- the type of clients you would be working with
- the location of the company
- career growth opportunity
- the size of your new team
- the company's reputation
- overall workplace culture.

Talk to the interviewer about other factors that are important to you when considering a new job. If you are not sure on details for this role, you can ask!

Rachelle's Answer #1
"Salary is important to me because I know that I am skilled and well educated. With that said, I do look at the full picture before accepting a position, which includes factors such as benefits, the amount of paid vacation time, the type of work challenges and opportunities and work/life balance."
Michelle's Answer #2
"Several factors are important to me when taking a job. Compensation is a driving component but so is the company mission, culture, benefits, and location. Right now, I am looking to have an easier commute than I currently experience, and I'm also looking to join an industry leading organization where I know I can learn, grow and develop as a professional."
11.
What can you tell me about the environmental and safety ramifications of hydraulic fracturing?
The interviewer wants to see how familiar you are with a controversial industry issue. Make sure to check out Exxon's website in advance of the interview to see what the company's stance is and define for yourself how that position meshes with your own.

Rachelle's Answer #1
"I know this has been a controversial question at times within the industry. With all the benefits that come from unconventional gas harvesting have also come questions about the environmental effects of hydraulic fracturing. From what I've read, I believe that Exxon takes very seriously its responsibility to ensure environmental care during the entire life cycle process - from exploration to decommissioning - in order to protect human safety, groundwater and the surrounding landscape."
Michelle's Answer #2
"I was impressed, while preparing for this interview, with the extensive measures Exxon puts in place in order to responsibly operate within communities. For example, when a hydraulic fracturing drilling site is selected, community engagement is undertaken and information is gathered regarding all applicable laws, regulations, permits and codes, and environmental impact assessments may be conducted to identify and address any potential conflicts. All development and production activities incorporate well-defined and proven policies, standards and practices to ensure safe and environmentally responsible operations."
12.
As a manager, what is your greatest weakness?
Everyone has his/her weaknesses, and that is OK. Talk to the hiring manager about what you feel you could work on the most, and what you are doing about it. Avoid discussing a weakness that could be detrimental to you securing the position.

Rachelle's Answer #1
"As a manager, I feel that my greatest weakness is in separating employees as quickly as possible when they begin to show signs that they are not going to work out. I try to give people the benefit of the doubt and have been known to continue trying to nurture people when they really are overdue for termination. I have taken a couple of management training classes focusing on this area, and I'm also working with an industry mentor; I feel I'm improving in being able to objectively approach separating employees who aren't a good fit."
Michelle's Answer #2
"Some feedback that I have received in my current role is that I could improve my technical skills when it comes to Microsoft Excel and PowerPoint. I have all the basics covered, but when it comes to more complicated formulas or visualization of data, I don't have much experience. To remedy this, I have enrolled in a course for next month, and my goal is to come out of that experience as a more intermediate user."
13.
When given an important assignment, how do you approach handling it?
The interviewer would like to know how you first approach a critical assignment. Are you the individual who will take an assignment head-on, or do you need to research and plan early? Do you jump in and get it all done immediately or do you balance it with other assignments? Talk to the interviewer about how you approach essential tasks at work.

Rachelle's Answer #1
"When my supervisor gives me an important assignment or task I am sure to assess the depth of the project, then take a look at my schedule to see how I can appropriately balance it with my other work. I do not procrastinate because then it's easy to get behind."
Michelle's Answer #2
"I lay out all the deadlines, figure out the deliverables, priority order, and then do all the research needed to make informed decisions. I keep a written "to-do" list and transfer project deadlines into my calendar to stay on task."
14.
Tell me how you brought value to your most recent position.
This question offers another way for the interviewer to ask about your recent successes and bragging points. The interviewer wants to know which top skills you will highlight if you had to narrow down where you brought the most value.

Perhaps you influenced changes that saved the company money. Maybe you were the top performing manager in your department. Think of your strengths in action! If you are reliable, talk about how consistent your work has been and how you are in constant support of your coworkers. If you have a strong work ethic, share how you accomplished a project in the midst of harsh obstacles.

Rachelle's Answer #1
"In my last position, I brought value through delivering an increased customer base and a stronger contractor network. My ability to build strong relationships helped me secure and maintain a great deal of new business."
Michelle's Answer #2
"My organizational skills made an incredible impact on my current company. Upon my arrival, I quickly implemented new filing systems for both physical and digital files. I also introduced the use of Trello, a project management app that we now use office-wide."
15.
A key concern for the oil and gas industry is appropriate management of water resources. What do you know about Exxon's approach to being a good steward of freshwater?
This is an important issue for any major global corporation that uses a lot of water in its manufacturing/distribution process. Show the interviewer that you understand the importance of the issue and that you have a general understanding of what Exxon is doing to be a responsible corporate citizen.

Rachelle's Answer #1
"Water and energy have always been closely related. Water is essential for providing energy, just as energy is needed to provide water. This means there must be a delicate balance between the two. I appreciate that Exxon realizes its important role in effectively stewarding freshwater resources, which account for only 1 percent of total available water on Earth. From what I've read, I can see that Exxon focuses its efforts on preventing adverse impacts to water resources and prudently managing the water the company uses."
Michelle's Answer #2
"This is an issue that I feel passionately about, and I'm happy to see Exxon taking clear, proactive steps to effectively steward water resources. As part of a comprehensive risk-management approach, Exxon is committed to managing the interaction of activities with water in order to protect human health and the environment; consider local water needs when addressing operational requirements; continuously improve capabilities and performance; and engage stakeholders in the development of sustainable water solutions, particularly at the local level. This seems like a responsible and straightforward solution."
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30 Exxon Mobil Corporation 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. Exxon Mobil Corporation operates in many countries. Are you eligible to travel and work around the world?
  2. At Exxon Mobil, we are committed to positive action on climate change and dedicated to reducing the risk of climate change in the most efficient way for society. What else can you tell me about our position on climate change?
  3. What is OPEC, and why does it matter?
  4. What can you tell me about Exxon's work in the Arctic?
  5. What is the most significant achievement you have on the horizon?
  6. When have you had to make a split second decision? How do you react under unexpected pressure?
  7. What type of work environment allows you to be the most productive?
  8. What have you done to improve your oil and gas knowledge in the last year?
  9. What is the difference between a leader and a manager?
  10. Is compensation the most important factor for you when taking a new job?
  11. What can you tell me about the environmental and safety ramifications of hydraulic fracturing?
  12. As a manager, what is your greatest weakness?
  13. When given an important assignment, how do you approach handling it?
  14. Tell me how you brought value to your most recent position.
  15. A key concern for the oil and gas industry is appropriate management of water resources. What do you know about Exxon's approach to being a good steward of freshwater?
  16. Would you be willing to work over 40 hours a week?
  17. Why is this job with Exxon Mobil Corporation right for you at this time in your career?
  18. When have you been asked to perform a function or complete a task in which you had little or no experience in doing?
  19. Tell me about your education and how it relates to the oil, gas, or energy sector.
  20. Which is the leading publication or resource that you use for up-to-date news on the oil and gas sector?
  21. What questions do you have for me?
  22. How are crude oil prices determined?
  23. What can you tell me about Exxon's spill prevention and response guidelines?
  24. Tell me about a time when you witnessed unsafe behavior in the field. What did you do?
  25. Exxon Mobil Corporation has a serious commitment to safety. How will you help us to uphold this commitment?
  26. Have you progressed in your career as you have expected?
  27. Do you think it is possible to be a good team member, yet disagree with the leader?
  28. This role requires extensive knowledge of pipeline systems and oil well machinery. How well do you understand this complicated equipment?
  29. With which industry-related computer programs are you most familiar?
  30. You will often be working cross-departmentally. Tell me about a time you worked successfully with people outside of your department.
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