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RiseSmart Interview
Questions

28 Questions and Answers by Ryan Brunner

Published October 11th, 2019 | Ryan has over 10 years of experience interviewing
candidates in the healthcare, public service, and private manufacturing/distribution industries.
Question 1 of 28
How do you stay organized and on track when working on a long-term project?
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How to Answer
Working for RiseSmart in the role you are interviewing for will require an innate ability to manage projects from conception to final implementation. For this question, your interviewer will be looking to hear that you have the ability to maintain organization to meet deadlines and customer expectations. Talk about your personal methods for organizing project work and give any examples that you have of your methods being successful. In the consulting and advisory industry, customer satisfaction and word of mouth are integral to success and growth of a business and effective project management is key in satisfaction.
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Top 25 RiseSmart Interview Questions with Full Content
1.
How do you stay organized and on track when working on a long-term project?
Working for RiseSmart in the role you are interviewing for will require an innate ability to manage projects from conception to final implementation. For this question, your interviewer will be looking to hear that you have the ability to maintain organization to meet deadlines and customer expectations. Talk about your personal methods for organizing project work and give any examples that you have of your methods being successful. In the consulting and advisory industry, customer satisfaction and word of mouth are integral to success and growth of a business and effective project management is key in satisfaction.

Ryan's Answer #1
"I really pride myself on my ability to multitask and my ability to stay organized in key in multitasking. For me personally, organization starts with using technology to my advantage and I do this through the use of my Outlook calendar and tasks functions. I take time each day to update my tasks and project work and use my ability to prioritize tasks to ensure that the right things are being worked on. In looking to bring these skills to long-term project work with your clients, staying organized and on task will be extremely important for the success of both RiseSmart and your clients."
Ryan's Answer #2
"In my work, the ability to stay organized and on track comes down to having a plan of attack for each project and keeping track of the plan as milestones are hit. If you are familiar with the program Trello, it really helps me organize all of the components of the projects that I work on and give me the ability to track who is doing what, what deadlines are coming and what milestones have been hit. But even with a great program like this, I always have the ability to re-prioritize due dates and new tasks as needed with any project."
2.
In your own point of view, what is the most important factor in influencing change for an organization?
As a professional in change management processes, your interviewer is looking to get some personal insight into how you will work closely with the clients of RiseSmart in this question. However you answer this question, be sure to speak with conviction as to why you feel your answer is the most important aspect to the change management process. However you answer, make sure not to discount other factors that influence change.

Ryan's Answer #1
"In my experience, the biggest thing that I've seen derail change management for large organizations is a lack of support. When I say support, it is really buy-in and true belief from senior level leadership. Because of this, my initial steps in meeting with any client would be to meet 1:1 with all key stakeholders to gather their ideas and to ensure that they are buying into the change process. Only when that is achieved will I feel comfortable in moving forward with work with that client."
Ryan's Answer #2
"While certainly a high level answer here, people are definitely the most important factor in the change management process for an organization. Change starts with people leading the charge and finishes with every person on board with new processes and ways of life. Because of this, my focus during a change management process is the people that will be designing the change and implementing the change in the end."
3.
During your career, have you ever had to terminate an employee? How about having to handle mass job eliminations?
Consulting firms like RiseSmart, that specialize in the HR side of businesses, often get called upon to analyze and assess businesses, their staffing and their overall practices. Part of the assessment phase can involve staffing numbers and getting an organization to the optimum number of employees. Because you may have to deal with layoffs or single terminations, your interviewer will be looking to hopefully hear that you have some experience with this during your career up to this point. Be sure to speak openly and honestly about your experiences while walking them through important things that are necessary during a termination or a layoff.

Ryan's Answer #1
"While I don't have experience with large scale staff layoffs, I do have experiencing terminating employees for performance related issues. Early in my career, when working for a small company, I'll be honest in saying that I did struggle in this aspect of the job. Perhaps the best advice I ever received was from a colleague who told me that employees fire themselves and I just have to bring them the bad news. Through the terminations that I've handled during my career, I've learned that a systematic approach to performance documentation and record keeping is vital to ensuring that my organization was making the right choice. I've also learned that keeping personal feelings aside is extremely important as I am a representative of my organization. I feel these are both important things to work through if given the opportunity to work with clients who would be facing mass layoffs or position eliminations."
Ryan's Answer #2
"As you can see from my experience, I have spent a good portion of my career in the unionized manufacturing setting and I have had to work through some mass layoffs during that time and individualized terminations as well. I know that my experience, particularly in the union setting, will be very beneficial in this advisory role with RiseSmart."
4.
For our clients here at RiseSmart that are working through a change management project, accountability is of utmost importance for the entire organization. How would you help ensure accountability from the leadership team?
As a consultant to organizations in the midst of a change management process, accountability should be a priority for the leadership team and one of your tasks as the consultant is to help foster this with the entire staff. With accountability comes transparency, so be sure to focus on this aspect in your answer. Talk about why you feel that accountability and transparency are important and how you would make sure that the leaders you work with keep these things at the top of mind during their process.

Ryan's Answer #1
"Having walked many organizations through some major change processes, one of my top priorities is always communication and transparency to staff. And you really hit the nail on the head with this question that both of these things lead to accountability for the organization. To help facilitate this process, my conversations with leadership would entail details on how to effectively communicate with staff and I'm a firm believer that this should happen from both the highest levels of leadership as well as from direct supervisors and managers of employees. I have experience developing communication strategies and actual presentations for leadership in this realm."
Ryan's Answer #2
"In my experience, accountability for an organization during a change process is a tricky line to walk. First, employees want to know what is happening and the reasoning behind it. Second, customers, stakeholder and the general public may desire information as well. Then, you have to factor in what information can be shared for legal and/or competitive reasons and walk the organization through best communicating the changes to everybody. I have a great deal of experience in walking through this process of holding an organization accountable and would love to help the clients of RiseSmart do just this."
5.
If you came to work for RiseSmart, an expectation of the job would be facilitating training for staff with our clients. What do you feel are the keys to being an effective trainer?
As you may well know, the number one fear of people is public speaking and the mere thought of standing up in front of a group and talking strikes fear in most folks. One thing your interviewer will be looking to hear for this question is that you can thrive in that situation. On top of that ability, talk about any experiences you have in providing training to staff and highlight the key areas you feel are important. Talk about the importance of making training both fun and interactive to help drive points home to your learners.

Ryan's Answer #1
"Whenever I have the opportunity to provide training to groups, the first focus of my design is to promote interaction from the people I am training. Active participation promotes motivation and I do this through role-playing, asking questions and even having people come up front with me to give real world examples to the group so they can hear the perspective of a peer versus me as the trainer. Another key thing that I try to bring to training sessions is energy. I bring high energy to a room and try to promote it among the staff. From a colleague, I recently learned about an ice breaking game to start an all day training that involves blind folding all participants in the room and assigning each person an animal. There are two people in each session with matching animals and the participants have to make the sound their animal makes and have to find and meet up with their matching animal. The two times I've used this have been a big hit and got the group laughing and having fun from the start."
Ryan's Answer #2
"For me personally, the first key to being an effective and efficient trainer is knowing my topic inside and out. As the trainer, I will be asked questions and be expected to be the subject matter expert on what I'm presenting. If needed, I study and prepare diligently prior to facilitating training sessions. Another key for me is creating the right atmosphere to promote learning. This starts with small things like providing beverages and snacks and ensuring the temperature of the room is appropriate. It extends to much bigger things like ensuring training materials are well prepped and motivating all of the learners to participate in the program. If hired here at RiseSmart, you can be sure that I'd bring this same approach to your clients."
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