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Materion Corporation Interview
Questions

30 Questions and Answers by
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 30

What sources do you look to when you need to solve a complicated problem?

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Materion Corporation Interview Questions

  1. 1.

    What sources do you look to when you need to solve a complicated problem?

      The interviewer wants to know that you can think outside the box, or even ask for help when you are stuck on a complicated problem.

      Maybe you look to a mentor or boss for advice. Perhaps you have handbooks, manuals and systems you turn to for help. Offer some relevant examples based on your industry. If you work in the medical field, you may turn to textbooks, online research, colleagues or even patient's history to find the right solution. If you work in customer service, you may ask the customer what they need to find the best way to solve the problem.

      Show the interviewer that you are knowledgeable and equipped to handle these types of scenarios.

      Rachelle's Answer

      "When faced with a complicated problem, I will look to the resources that my current company has provided me. The answer is almost always in there. If it's more of a moral dilemma vs. a knowledge-based dilemma, I will ask my supervisor for his thoughts and opinion since I value him as a mentor and expert in our industry."

      Rachelle's Answer

      "If there's a complicated problem, I'll write out what I think the possible solutions would be, and make a note of what my gut tells me to do. Then, I will weigh those potential solutions against one another and list the complications that may arise as a result of each choice. Also, I am always open to input or suggestions from those with more experience than I and look to my mentors, their experience, and the training resources, as well as potentially talk the problem out with coworkers or my boss."

  2. 2.

    When have you made a mistake delegating tasks to your team members?

      Being able to delegate to your team correctly is a critical part of successful management. Talk to the interviewer about a time that you have appointed in error. Be sure to discuss how you repaired the mistake.

      Rachelle's Answer

      "Earlier in my career I would delegate tasks at random, thinking that everyone had the skills to complete any company-related task. I found that these employees would procrastinate on these tasks if they seemed overwhelming or if they did not understand them. After a bit of time, and some learning, I began to delegate based on personality type and skill-set. This method proved to be much more effective, and I follow this delegation style to this day."

      Rachelle's Answer

      "I am usually cautious when delegating tasks because putting the wrong person in the wrong function can be a dangerous, and expensive, mistake. A few years ago I put an employee on the incorrect piece of machinery, thinking that he was certified in operating that bit of equipment. I am now sure to double check credentials before delegating."

  3. 3.

    How do you like to be recognized for your accomplishments?

      We all like recognition in some way for our accomplishments in the workplace. Share with the interviewer how you would want credit for your hard work. Through gifts? Financial perks? Public recognition? Kind words? Title promotions?

      Rachelle's Answer

      "I am very much an over-achiever and find that the best way for me to be recognized for a job well done is words of kindness and recognition. I am easily encouraged, and the best reward for me is to know that my hard work is being noticed."

      Rachelle's Answer

      "I do not like public recognition all that much as I prefer to do my job well, regardless of being recognized. When I have a major achievement, I would prefer a phone call from my supervisor saying a good job. Also, I like to be awarded additional responsibilities."

  4. 4.

    Materion Corporation is committed to transparency, whether that means full disclosure to our board, the government, or audit committee. Do you consider yourself a transparent and honest individual?

      Assure the interviewer that you are an honest individual who will respect the values and environment created at Materion Corporation. When a question like this is asked of you, it's a great idea to offer up your references as well.

      Rachelle's Answer

      "I consider myself honest, and quite a transparent individual. I believe it is always best to have your intentions and desires known. In turn, I appreciate my employer being honest with me. I have prepared some references for you, and I'm confident they will speak to my honest character as well."

      Rachelle's Answer

      "I am told quite often that I am an honest and trustworthy individual, and you will be able to hear that directly from my supervisor when you call for a reference. I hold honesty and trustworthiness as fundamental virtues."

  5. 5.

    Integrity is a key value at Materion Corporation. When have you shown great integrity at work?

      Integrity is best displayed through honesty and consistent moral values. Talk to the interviewer about the ways that you show your integrity in the workplace.

      Rachelle's Answer

      "In my last position, I was responsible for the cash deposit on a daily basis. There was never a discrepancy, in the four years that I worked there. I best show my integrity by being a consistently reliable employee."

      Rachelle's Answer

      "I show great integrity in all that I do. It's important in this industry, to be honest, and allow people to know what to expect from you. Being a person of integrity is very important to me."

  6. 6.

    Give me an example of a time when your communication style helped you to be a more effective leader.

      Everyone has their style of communication. Whatever your style, show the interviewer that it is useful. Your response should demonstrate your ability to articulate constructive criticism, encourage your team, or relay policy changes in a way that makes them exciting!

      Rachelle's Answer

      "I gave my employee some negative feedback because he appeared to be slacking off on the job. Rather than telling him, I thought he was lazy; I said, 'I've noticed that it's been taking longer for you to turn in those reports. What's going on? Is there anything I can do?' I always start by asking questions instead of making accusations. He was very appreciative and told me how he was struggling with motivation. I asked him what would motivate him and we were able to find a solution that worked for both of us."

      Rachelle's Answer

      "I love to play to other's strengths. Everyone communicates differently, so I am sure always to send written as well as give verbal communication. Usually, that looks like a small, informal huddle outlining our topic or concern and I follow that up with a quick email detailing the discussion. This way the team hears and reads all expectations. Also, it allows for those who are vocal to share in a group setting as well as allows for the quieter few to ask their questions in the privacy of an email."

  7. 7.

    At Materion Corporation we understand that our industry can be a volatile one. In your opinion, what is the outlook for the metals and mining industry in the next year?

      The interviewer wants to see that you have a keen interest in the industry and that you are up to date on some of the challenges and wins that Materion Corporation may be facing. You do not need to give an incredibly long and drawn out answer but be sure to highlight a couple of interesting points.

      Wrap up your response by asking the interviewer their personal opinion on the outlook for the industry. This question from you could start an insightful and helpful conversation

      Rachelle's Answer

      "I read in an article a short time ago that mining was one of 2016's best performing sectors despite a slow start to the year. Citi analysts are predicting another solid year. How do you feel the outlook will be for this industry in the years to come?"

      Rachelle's Answer

      "Although the prices for many commodities have declined over the years, I feel that we will be bouncing back again very soon. According to the Financial Post, 2018 is going to be a solid year for the metals and mining industry."

  8. 8.

    Every step counts for a successful project so at Materion Corporation we prefer to hire those who come highly trained. Do you have any post-secondary education related to project management or environmental affairs?

      Assure the interviewer that you come equipped with the knowledge level appropriate for this position. If you do not have a post-secondary education, then be sure to make a statement regarding your ability to perform the tasks required of you for this role with Materion Corporation.

      If you have project management or environmental related post-secondary education: "I am PMP Certified from the Project Management Institute. In addition to this certification, I also possess a degree in Business Management from Strayer University. These education related successes have helped me to learn more about multitasking during complex projects, anticipate product needs, and put safety at the forefront of a project."

      Rachelle's Answer

      "I am PMP Certified from the Project Management Institute. In addition to this certification, I also possess a degree in Business Management from Strayer University. These education related successes have helped me to learn more about multitasking during complex projects, anticipate product needs, and put safety at the forefront of a project."

      Rachelle's Answer

      "If you do not have project management or environmental related post-secondary education: "My formal education related to environmental affairs is limited; however, I bring 15 solid years' experience in the industry. My knowledge level is healthy, and I am confident in my ability to surpass your expectations."

  9. 9.

    Materion Corporation likes to bring out the best in our employees. What type of manager brings out the best in you?

      The interviewer wants to see that you are self-aware and understand the type of manager or employer that brings out the best in you. Some individuals prefer a close working relationship with a lot of accountability while others prefer space and autonomy. If you are unsure of the management style at Materion Corporation, try to leave your answer as open as possible. You can certainly ask the interviewer to describe their management style.

      Rachelle's Answer

      "I have worked with a wide range of personalities and management styles with great success. If I could express a preference, I feel that I perform best in an independent and autonomous environment. Can you describe the management style here?"

      Rachelle's Answer

      "I work best with managers who are patient, like to teach and are clear communicators. Because I am newer to my career, I do hope to work for a manager who can mentor me."

  10. 10.

    What decisions did you routinely make in your last position?

      The interviewer would like to know more about the types of decisions you are accustomed to making in the workplace. The way you answer this questions will give them a good idea of your level of experience, seniority, and ability to handle the decision-making requirements in this possible position.

      If the job you are interviewing for requires you to be decisive and quick on your feet, you will need to be able to provide examples of how you have done these things in the past. If you worked in tech support, you faced problems that you needed to find solutions for on a regular basis. If you worked as a sales rep, you might have been required to know how to negotiate and make decisions on prices and benefits you can give your customers.

      You may have faced with decisions that became so routine you didn't think twice! Refer to these types of decisions and be sure to highlight how these types of decisions have prepared you for a role like this one.

      Rachelle's Answer

      "In my previous position I was quite often required to make decisions on staff scheduling as well as hiring and terminating. I feel that role prepared me quite well for a position like this one. I have well-honed decision-making skills and my intuition, when it comes to hiring, has been elevated."

      Rachelle's Answer

      "I regularly made decisions regarding pricing and discounts for customers. I had a standard set of criteria that I created, and I tried to let that guide me for consistency."

  11. 11.

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

      Do you use your creative mind with your colleagues to discuss ideas and systems in the workplace? Talk to the interviewer about how you have used creative thinking in the workplace.

      Rachelle's Answer

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

      Rachelle's Answer

      "I think it is important to discuss work with colleagues in a collaborative nature to encourage all types of ideas to come forth. Often, when people put their heads together, they will create something better than something one individual could have done alone."

  12. 12.

    At Materion Corporation we put safety first when it comes to our employees and the handling of our products. How important is safety to you?

      Assure the interviewer that you are as concerned about safety as they are. In which ways do you put safety first? Talk about the importance of security in the workplace.

      Rachelle's Answer

      "One of the reasons why Materion Corporation stands out to me as a potential employer, is your dedication to workplace safety. I feel that safety should be the number one consideration in this industry. It determines employee engagement, company profitability, and ensures a strong industry reputation."

      Rachelle's Answer

      "Safety is of utmost importance to me! I take regular precautions in the workplace, and I continue to attend safety training while keeping my tickets and certifications valid."

  13. 13.

    Materion Corporation seeks to hire those who are up to date on the industry. Our industry is a competitive one with policy changing frequently. How do you keep up with industry trends and policy changes?

      The interviewer is seeking for proof that you have a genuine interest in their particular industry. When you have a real interest in a topic, you will spend time dedicating yourself to grow your knowledge base.

      Discuss with the interviewer a couple of ways that you keep yourself updated on industry trends and policy changes. It's also a great idea to ask the interviewer about the ways they keep prefer to stay on top of industry topics. You never know what other resources are out there and you may learn something new!

      Rachelle's Answer

      "There are many great resources dedicated to the metals and mining industry. At the moment, my favorite resource is miningmagazine.com. I visit their website frequently and also subscribe to their blog. What is your favorite resource for industry related news?"

      Rachelle's Answer

      "I subscribe to a variety of print, and online, publications such as Mines to Markets, Mining Global and Cobalt News. Could you share with me some of your favorite resources? I always like to learn about new industry resources."

  14. 14.

    In your opinion, why is our industry a fundamental one?

      Employees who see value in their company, and industry, are going to be happier and stay longer. The interviewer is looking for your opinion on why the metals and mining industry is an important one. Show the interviewer that, if hired by Materion Corporation, you would have a sense of pride in what they do.

      Rachelle's Answer

      "I strongly believe that the metals and mining industry provides an excellent boost in the economy; especially in those regions and states where mining activity is concentrated. Minerals and metals are what make nearly everything we have so without this type of mining, many of the products we know and love would not exist."

      Rachelle's Answer

      "I believe the biggest reason why mining is necessary is that minerals and metals can rarely be substituted for anything. They are vital to our everyday lives. If mining stopped, we would not have other resources for some of the most important things we use every day."

  15. 15.

    At Materion Corporation we take every step possible to be a leader in our industry. In your opinion, who are our competitors and what sets us apart from them?

      It is incredibly important to research the company before your interview. You should learn who the company's competitors are. Discuss your findings with the interviewer and be sure to speak highly of Materion Corporation while answering this question.

      Rachelle's Answer

      "I have researched Materion Corporation and see that you truly are an industry leader in the metals and mining arena. From my research, I believe what sets you apart is your incredible dedication to safety, and to the environment."

      Rachelle's Answer

      "From my understanding, your biggest competitors are companies A, B, and C. I believe that Materion Corporation is different because you put safety above all else. Your public safety records are impressive, and I am excited at the possibility to join such a responsible company."

  16. 16.

    What do you know about corporate governance practices in the metals and mining industry?

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  17. 17.

    Social responsibility is important to us. In your opinion, what is the best environmental effort Materion Corporation has launched in the past 3 years?

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  18. 18.

    How has your current job changed over the years?

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  19. 19.

    Do you consider yourself a patient person? How do you increase your patience level in challenging situations?

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  20. 20.

    We are looking for a long term fit at Materion Corporation. Where do you see yourself five years from now?

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  21. 21.

    Strong communication skills are important for any role with Materion Corporation. Rate your communication skills from 1-10.

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  22. 22.

    Considering your background is in an industry different from Materion Corporation, what skills and characteristics do you have that qualify you for this industry?

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  23. 23.

    We believe in giving Materion Corporation employees honest, open, and regular feedback. What feedback did you receive at your last job?

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  24. 24.

    Tell me about the most challenging problem you have encountered in your professional career.

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  25. 25.

    How do you define success?

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  26. 26.

    What is your personal mission statement?

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  27. 27.

    What steps do you take when you have to make an immediate decision and you do not feel you have all the relevant or necessary information?

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  28. 28.

    What is your current salary?

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  29. 29.

    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?

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  30. 30.

    Are you applying for any other jobs?

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