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John Keells Holdings Interview
Questions

32 Questions and Answers by Rachelle Enns

Rachelle is a job search expert, career coach, and headhunter
who helps everyone from students to fortune executives find success in their career.
Question 1 of 32
At John Keells Holdings we put a lot of emphasis on clear communication between all parties, departments, and sectors of our business. Tell me about your communication style.
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How to Answer
The interviewer would like to be assured that your communication style is a close match to the communication preferences of John Keells Holdings Ltd.. When working for a conglomerate vs. a smaller, privately owned business your communication style automatically becomes more 'corporate' in nature. Briefly describe your communication style to the interviewer and be sure to include the ways in which you feel your communications styles align.
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32 John Keells Holdings 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. At John Keells Holdings we put a lot of emphasis on clear communication between all parties, departments, and sectors of our business. Tell me about your communication style.
  2. Because John Keells Holdings is geographically widespread, we have to accommodate a variety of time zones. Do you have experience working with clients and co-workers in multiple time zones?
  3. At John Keells Holdings we have business partners and interests all over the world. Are you open to international travel? Is there anything that would restrict you from traveling for work?
  4. Have you ever been employed through a company merger or acquisition? If so, tell me about your experience.
  5. John Keells Holdings puts a lot of focus on our local and global impact so we seek to hire those with the same values. What do you know about our company values, and how do they align with your personal values?
  6. We have a few strong competitors. In your opinion, what does John Keells Holdings do to stand out from the rest?
  7. Being a multi-national organization, there are many opportunities for career growth here. If hired, where would you like to take your career with John Keells Holdings?
  8. Typical "corporate culture" is something that we work to avoid here at John Keells Holdings. Tell me about your ideal workplace culture.
  9. At John Keells Holdings we seek to hire those who are confident in their skills and proactive. How do you plan to make an impact on our business in the first 90 days?
  10. Tell me about your greatest work related accomplishment.
  11. Tell me about a time when you made a suggestion requesting change in an organization.
  12. Tell me about the last time you undertook a project that demanded a lot of initiative.
  13. Have you ever taken a role in a company that hasn't fit into your long-term career plans?
  14. What are your strengths?
  15. At your current or former place of employment, how important was communication and dealing with others?
  16. Considering your background is in an industry different from ours, what skills and characteristics do you have that qualify you for this position in this industry?
  17. What type of work environment allows you to be the most productive?
  18. How do you like to encourage ideas in others?
  19. How would your co-workers describe your attention to detail?
  20. Tell me about your education.
  21. We are asking for 8 years of industry experience and you have just 5. Why do you think you are qualified for this position?
  22. On a scale from 1 to 10, how honest are you?
  23. How do you define success?
  24. When have you had to lead by example?
  25. As a manager, who has been your greatest influence? A person that has defined what type of leader you wish to be.
  26. How do you balance life and work?
  27. What was the most challenging aspect of your previous job? How did you overcome it?
  28. What sources do you look to when solving complicated problems?
  29. How do you feel about performance incentives?
  30. What are your salary expectations?
  31. If you had a co-worker call in sick and you were asked to take over their project requiring overtime from you, how would you react? Where do you draw the line when it comes to being a team player?
  32. How would you rate your performance in this interview so far?
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Answer Examples
1.
At John Keells Holdings we put a lot of emphasis on clear communication between all parties, departments, and sectors of our business. Tell me about your communication style.
The interviewer would like to be assured that your communication style is a close match to the communication preferences of John Keells Holdings Ltd.. When working for a conglomerate vs. a smaller, privately owned business your communication style automatically becomes more 'corporate' in nature. Briefly describe your communication style to the interviewer and be sure to include the ways in which you feel your communications styles align.

Rachelle's Answer #1
"My communication style leans more to the formal side. I like to be concise and keep expectations simple to understand. If I had to sum up my communication style in a few words I would say it is concise, clean, and friendly. From the communication exchanges I have had with John Keells Holdings Ltd. so far, I believe our communication styles are a great fit."
Rachelle's Answer #2
"Some other words to describe your communication style:

- Articulate
- Conversational
- Eloquent
- Formal
- Informal
- Succinct"
2.
Because John Keells Holdings is geographically widespread, we have to accommodate a variety of time zones. Do you have experience working with clients and co-workers in multiple time zones?
Working for a conglomerate corporation can bring some unique challenges as their global footprint may be vast. Be sure to express to the interviewer that you are able to successfully handle those challenges.

If you have experience working with clients and co-workers in multiple time zones: "In my current position I collaborate with our offices in the U.S., Canada, Scotland, and Finland. It was a struggle at first to always remember what day and time others were working in; however, I now have a great desktop application that tracks this for me so I have quick reference to the information that I need."
Rachelle's Answer #1
"In my current position I collaborate with our offices in the U.S., Canada, Scotland, and Finland. It was a struggle at first to always remember what day and time others were working in; however, I now have a great desktop application that tracks this for me so I have quick reference to the information that I need."
Rachelle's Answer #2
"If you do not have experience working with clients and co-workers in multiple time zones: "I do not have exposure to working around multiple time zones; however, this is something I could pick up on very quickly. With technology these days I am sure I could find some help with a handy phone or desktop application. Also, I am not opposed to working outside of business hours on the occasions where I would need to communicate with a client across the globe."
3.
At John Keells Holdings we have business partners and interests all over the world. Are you open to international travel? Is there anything that would restrict you from traveling for work?
For many conglomerate corporations who have interests across the globe, international travel is a very important part of what they do. You must disclose to the interviewer if you are unable to travel internationally.

If you are able to travel internationally: "There are no restrictions on my travel. I have a current passport as well as a valid NEXUS pass."

If you are unable to travel internationally: "I do have restrictions on international travel which I can fully disclose to you if I am still eligible for this role. I expect to have this restriction cleared in the near future."
Rachelle's Answer #1
"There are no restrictions on my travel. I have a current passport as well as a valid NEXUS pass."
Rachelle's Answer #2
"I am open to some international travel; however, for the sake of my family, I do not wish to travel more than 30% of the time. What percentage of travel is expected in this role?"
4.
Have you ever been employed through a company merger or acquisition? If so, tell me about your experience.
When your work history includes employment with large companies and/or conglomerate corporations the chances are high that you have experienced a merger or acquisition of some sort. Perhaps you have been laid off through a process such as this? Talk to the interviewer about your experience. They are looking for an idea of your attitude when it comes to change in a corporate environment. Maintain a positive attitude and avoid speaking negatively about any previous employers.

Rachelle's Answer #1
"I went through a merger in 2010 with Company ABC. The transition during their mass-layoff was not handled as professionally as many would have liked; however, I believe that the leadership team did the best they could. I was lucky enough to stay on board with the company and my experience during the transition was certainly eye opening. I learned a lot through the process."
Rachelle's Answer #2
"I have been fortunate enough to have had very few disruptive changes in my previous places of employment. With that said, I do believe that some mergers and acquisitions can be beneficial to the company culture, if the transition is completed in a smooth and mindful manner."
5.
John Keells Holdings puts a lot of focus on our local and global impact so we seek to hire those with the same values. What do you know about our company values, and how do they align with your personal values?
It is very important that you research John Keells Holdings Ltd. in great detail before your interview. Be prepared to discuss the global efforts currently underway and also research any local charity efforts that John Keells Holdings Ltd. supports. Discuss your own personal values and how they align with the values at John Keells Holdings Ltd..

Rachelle's Answer #1
"I have always spent time volunteering with local organizations. This includes the animal shelter, the children's hospital, and our local food bank. I believe that no matter how busy we are we always have time to give back. I have researched the efforts that John Keells Holdings Ltd. puts in when it comes to charity. Your values and interest in your global impact are impressive. It's one of the reasons I am so attracted to your organization."
Rachelle's Answer #2
"I have researched your company's efforts to give back and I really like that you consider your charitable efforts to be another method of determining the success of your organization. It's important to be an active part of the community, in any capacity."
6.
We have a few strong competitors. In your opinion, what does John Keells Holdings do to stand out from the rest?
Before your interview it is important that you not only research John Keells Holdings Ltd., but also their competitors. What do you think that John Keells Holdings Ltd. is doing better than any of their competitors? Be positive, compliment John Keells Holdings Ltd. on their efforts, and ensure that you do not bash the competitors at the same time.

Rachelle's Answer #1
"I have researched John Keells Holdings Ltd. online and found a common theme when it came to reviews, comments, and news articles. That common theme is surrounding the fairness that you offer your employees. You have strong benefits programs and offer multiple growth opportunities in all departments. This seems like a really positive place to work. I simply didn't see your competitors standing out in that area."
Rachelle's Answer #2
"I believe that John Keells Holdings Ltd. stands out from the rest through clear branding and marketing strategies that your target market can relate to. I look forward to joining an organization with such great focus."
7.
Being a multi-national organization, there are many opportunities for career growth here. If hired, where would you like to take your career with John Keells Holdings?
Before your interview be sure to visit John Keells Holdings Ltd. career opportunities online. Take note of the range in opportunities. Perhaps there are opportunities in other locations? What kind of growth is available in the particular department you are interviewing with? Assure the interviewer that you desire a long term opportunity with John Keells Holdings Ltd. by discussing the career path you would like.

Rachelle's Answer #1
"I saw a few leadership opportunities posted on your company website that seemed very interesting. Ultimately, I would like to work my way into a management role that offered travel opportunities. I am very interested in working for John Keells Holdings Ltd. because of the multiple growth opportunities present here and I look forward to proving my capabilities to you."
Rachelle's Answer #2
"First, I would like to make a memorable impact in the initial role I would be hired to do. Once I feel that I've done that, I would be interested in working my way into a position within marketing and business branding with John Keells Holdings Ltd.."
8.
Typical "corporate culture" is something that we work to avoid here at John Keells Holdings. Tell me about your ideal workplace culture.
Workplace culture is incredibly important since we spend so much of our time at work! Talk to the interviewer about what your ideal workplace culture looks like. Share with the interviewer the factors that would make you want to stay with John Keells Holdings Ltd. long term.

Rachelle's Answer #1
"I am seeking a role with an organization like John Keells Holdings Ltd. where employees matter. This means fair wages, regular opportunities for continued education, and strong internal growth opportunities."
Rachelle's Answer #2
"I work best in more casual workplaces where autonomy is given and everyone is encouraged to act like a leader."
9.
At John Keells Holdings we seek to hire those who are confident in their skills and proactive. How do you plan to make an impact on our business in the first 90 days?
It is a great idea to map out a proactive progress plan before your interview so that you are prepared to discuss the ways in which you plan to make an impact on John Keells Holdings Ltd., if hired. Be sure to display confidence in your abilities but avoid trying to reinvent the wheel when it comes to the impact you wish to make. A great place to start would be to see if there appears to be a common need mentioned in the John Keells Holdings Ltd. job description/job posting.

Rachelle's Answer #1
"I noticed in your job description that you mention a sales hunter mentality as being a must. My 90 day impact plan would be to aggressively tackle the cold call list that you mentioned has been neglected recently. These cold calls will result in an increase in sales appointments as my closing percentage is very strong."
Rachelle's Answer #2
"If hired, I plan to make an impact on your business quickly. I will do this by fully absorbing my training, taking any additional coursework if required, and building healthy co-worker relationships right out of the gates."
10.
Tell me about your greatest work related accomplishment.
Talking about your greatest accomplishment will give the interviewer a strong idea of where you place your values. It will also show the interviewer more about your personality, how you like to be motivated, and how to coach you in the future. It is okay to brag a little bit when answering this question. Show that you are proud of yourself and your career accomplishments!

Rachelle's Answer #1
"The greatest accomplishment in my career was graduating University as an honors student while still working full time in a related field. I was top of my class, and working full time. This showed me that I am able to dedicate myself to my career, and reach the goals that I set for myself. It felt great to accomplish so much and be recognized for my dedication."
Rachelle's Answer #2
"I would have to say my greatest accomplishment was reducing departmental costs by 25% by thoroughly reviewing packing slips and comparing them to invoices and contract terms for accuracy."
11.
Tell me about a time when you made a suggestion requesting change in an organization.
In addition to being able to handle change, can you also recognize when change is required and be confident enough to present that to your organization? Talk to the interviewer about a time when you were able to make a suggestion for change in the workplace.

Rachelle's Answer #1
"Last year when I was managing dispatch for my company I noticed a pretty solid opportunity for us to save on overtime hours. I created a presentation and gave it to my manager who took it to upper management. The changes were implemented and I was very proud of the suggestion that I made."
Rachelle's Answer #2
"Our company did not have a strong policy when it came to workplace harassment and bullying. I was able to work with the leadership team to create a new program which has been readily welcomed by our staff."
12.
Tell me about the last time 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, who you led, or what you had to teach yourself in order for the project to be successful. Be sure to complete your answer by telling the interview what the outcome was.

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 holidays. 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 for the inventory counts so everyone knew what was expected of them. We completed the project three days ahead of schedule! It was a great success."
Rachelle's Answer #2
"I was tasked with changing our health benefits provider. Completing this project successfully was crucial to our employees and our bottom line. I made a lot of calls and RFQs, and spent a lot of time hearing proposals to make the best choice before enrollment time."
13.
Have you ever taken a role in a company that hasn't fit into your long-term career plans?
Most people have taken on a position that was not a fit for them in the end. It's best top openly discuss any positions that you have held that were not a fit. This will assist the interviewer in being able to properly place you within their organization. Be sure to end your answer on a positive note, discussing how you bounced back from the misstep.

Rachelle's Answer #1
"Yes, you will see that from March to May 2007 I held a role as Executive Business Development Manager with Company XYZ. This particular role was not what I was expecting and had little to do with management and more to do with cold calling onto C-suite level clients. This wasn't nurturing my plan to grow the management side of my career, so I resigned after just 2 months. Luckily I landed a wonderful job immediately after and grew with that company for the following 6 years."
Rachelle's Answer #2
"Fortunately, no. I have been very conscious of the changes and moves that I have made in my career so far. I would rather have a period of unemployment than choose the wrong employer."
14.
What are your strengths?
Which personal strengths make you excellent at your job? Strengths can be skills or qualities that help you overcome difficult circumstances or accomplish challenging tasks.

In a work context, your strengths will help you to complete your to-do list, understand client needs, and help you to apply what you have learned in your training. Talk to the interviewer about a couple of your strengths and why those will help you to be successful in this role.

Some great strengths to mention are:

- Communicative
- Loyal
- Collaborative
- Tech Savvy
- Flexible in Schedule/Availability
- Persistent and Determined
- Eager for Knowledge/New Skills

Rachelle's Answer #1
"I think my strengths are in my perceptiveness and ability to be observant of the needs of others. These strengths are part of what makes me an excellent performer in a client facing role."
Rachelle's Answer #2
"I believe my greatest strengths are in my communication skills- both written and oral. I use these daily in email pitching, phone call pitches or customer follow-ups, and then in person site visits."
15.
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 key? Talk to the interviewer about your most recent workplace and how communication played a part.

Rachelle's Answer #1
"In my previous role, healthy communication was required in order to protect the safety of our employees. We transported dangerous goods and it was required by our management that we all take specific workshops on communication and documentation. Because of this, my communication skills are exceptionally strong."
Rachelle's Answer #2
"There is not a strong level of communication in my current workplace. This is part of the reason why I am seeking new employment. I highly value clear communication. Do you encourage strong communication between employees here?"
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