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Sandhills Publishing Company Interview
Questions

30 Questions and Answers by Rachelle Enns

Published April 17th, 2019 | 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
Name for me some of the publications we have in circulation. Which do you read most often?
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How to Answer
The interviewer wants to be sure that you have done your homework on their publication. Many publishing companies offer multiple sub-publications geared towards niche markets. Discuss which Sandhills publications you are best versed in and why. Be sure to support your interests.
30 Sandhills Publishing Company Interview Questions
Win your next job by practicing from our question bank. We have thousands of questions and answers created by interview experts.
  1. Name for me some of the publications we have in circulation. Which do you read most often?
  2. Besides compensation, what do you value the most in the workplace?
  3. What questions do you have for me?
  4. If asked, how do you believe your coworkers would describe you?
  5. What are your salary expectations?
  6. When it comes to problem-solving, are you a strong collaborator?
  7. Do you perform better in a group setting, or when working alone?
  8. What challenges are you looking for in a position?
  9. Do you always double check or proofread your work?
  10. What feedback did you receive from your most recent manager?
  11. What work situations excite and motivate you?
  12. How do you show your co-workers the importance of communication in the workplace?
  13. Why do you want this job?
  14. Which career development goals have you set for yourself this year?
  15. Tell me about a time when you were in danger of missing a deadline. What did you do?
  16. Tell me about your experience collaborating with marketing, sales, editorial, and design teams.
  17. How do you react to an increase in your workload?
  18. Where do you believe the magazine industry will be in 5 years? Support your response.
  19. What do you know about the nature of print advertising?
  20. Walk me through your editing experience. How would you rate your editing skills from 1-10?
  21. In your opinion, what is the difference between marketing and advertising?
  22. What do you expect to be the most significant trend in publishing this year?
  23. What drew you to our publication?
  24. How do you transition between the creative and analytical sides of publishing?
  25. With which publishing categories are you most familiar? How will this knowledge help you in this position with Sandhills Publishing?
  26. How would you increase magazine subscriptions in an online-centric world?
  27. The publishing industry has many tight deadlines. How do you manage your time, ensuring that your deadlines are met?
  28. What is the key to success for a publisher in this digital era?
  29. How do you go about fact checking, and researching sources?
  30. If you could pitch me one idea for a book, article, or editorial, what would it be?
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15 Sandhills Publishing Company Answer Examples
1.
Name for me some of the publications we have in circulation. Which do you read most often?
The interviewer wants to be sure that you have done your homework on their publication. Many publishing companies offer multiple sub-publications geared towards niche markets. Discuss which Sandhills publications you are best versed in and why. Be sure to support your interests.

Rachelle's Answer #1
"From what I understand, Sandhills Publishing has many different publications including TractorWorld, AuctionTime, Machinery Trader and RentalYard. The magazine which I read most often is AuctionTime as I spend a lot of weekends with my dad scoping auctions for deals on farm machinery."
Rachelle's Answer #2
"The RV Universe publication released by Sandhills Publishing is hands down the one I read the most. As an avid camper and traveler, I like to look at what's available. I have the goal of owning my own RV one day."
2.
Besides compensation, what do you value the most in the workplace?
Financial compensation aside, the interviewer would like to know what is most important to you when looking for a new job. Your answer will show the interviewer some direction when they are ready to make you an offer of employment. You can talk about health benefits, work-life balance, workplace culture, growth, or even continued education opportunities. The sky is the limit!

Rachelle's Answer #1
"What I value most in the workplace are growth opportunities. I am missing this in my current role and very much look forward to working with a company like Sandhills who will provide me with bigger moves as I prove myself."
Rachelle's Answer #2
"For me, the room for creativity and a flexible workspace is significant. This flex could include a great office where it's easy to collaborate, or the ability to work from home when needed."
3.
What questions do you have for me?
It's always a great idea to have questions ready for the interviewer. Review the Sandhills website and other online resources to ensure the queries you have are not mundane, or redundant. The last thing an interviewer wants to hear is a list of items you could have found the answers for from merely watching a video on their company site!

Here are some sample questions:

- When would you like to have this position filled?
- How long has this role been vacant?
- Is this a replacement search or a newly created role?
- What is your favorite part about working for Sandhills?
- What is the company's primary goal for this position in the next 12 months?
- Is there anything from my background and experience that I can clarify for you?
- What do you see as the most significant change in the publishing industry over the past three years?
- Is there any reason why you would not hire me?

Rachelle's Answer #1
"Thank you for asking - I do have a few questions. What is top of mind when it comes to filling this role? Also, what types of career growth opportunities would follow this position? And lastly, do you have internal candidates who are also interviewing for this position?"
Rachelle's Answer #2
"I would like to ask if there is anything in my background on which you need clarification? Also, after discussing everything today, is there any particular reason why I would not be the best fit for this role with Sandhills Publishing? "
4.
If asked, how do you believe your coworkers would describe you?
The interviewer is hoping that your coworkers will describe you positively and uniquely. The hiring authority wants to know that you can honestly say that your co-workers enjoy collaborating with you! Select a few positive and unique keywords that genuinely define your work ethic, but also position you as a stand-out candidate.

Some great words to use:

- Encouraging
- Helpful
- Engaged
- Positive
- Hard-working
- Punctual
- Reliable
- Adaptable
- Compassionate
- Exuberant
- Intuitive
- Persistent

Rachelle's Answer #1
"I believe that my coworkers would describe me as curious, confident, and creative! I put a lot of effort into my work and always want our advertising clients to be happy with their ROI. I conduct a great deal of research into new marketing trends to ensure that I am delivering the best, most up-to-date solutions to my client projects."
Rachelle's Answer #2
"I have been described as persistent, determined, and hard-working. Failure is not in my vocabulary as I will even take a perceived failure, and make it work for me. I do not give up, and, when things get harder, I dig in deeper."
5.
What are your salary expectations?
In many states, it is now illegal for hiring authorities to ask about your current earnings. A question like this will give the interviewer a solid idea of what you are hoping to earn. When you change positions, you want to see an increase in wage. Most interviewees will typically aim for a 7-15% increase for each time they change jobs. This range offers room for negotiations with the new company. This percentage increase reflects economic inflation, the unique skills you bring to the table from the last time you joined an organization, and growth in responsibilities.

The best way to discuss your salary expectations is to use your current earnings as an example if you are comfortable doing so. If this makes you uncomfortable, do give as many indicators as you can. Be open, and honest. Transparency is the best choice when salary based questions arise.

If you are newer to your career, or the area, and are unsure of what a fair ask may be, there are many reliable salary calculators available online.

Rachelle's Answer #1
"Currently, I earn a base salary of $45,000 per year, and I would like to earn slightly higher in my next position, as I have additional certifications since my last salary negotiation took place."
Rachelle's Answer #2
"I am negotiable with my salary expectations. However, I am not inclined to lose compensation. Compensation to me, though, is not only net pay. I take into account work hours, commute. overnight travel, health benefits, etc."
6.
When it comes to problem-solving, are you a strong collaborator?
Show off your teamwork skills by giving an example of when you successfully collaborated with your coworkers. Be sure to demonstrate how you communicated your thoughts or opinions. Highlight how your contributions, or ability to ask for help, made a difference. Explain how you are a team player who enjoys working alongside others.

Rachelle's Answer #1
"I love having impromptu brainstorm sessions with my team. It keeps everyone on their toes! When an issue comes to light with a particular magazine issue, for instance, I will approach the problem with the entire team and open the floor, at the end of the meeting, for suggestions."
Rachelle's Answer #2
"In publishing, it is imperative to collaborate and gain different sides of the story, and new opinions. I try to seek out my team's opinions on projects all the time. I find everyone has something to contribute and can help me see a problem or strategy in a way that I may not have ever considered."
7.
Do you perform better in a group setting, or when working alone?
It is okay to lean one way more than the other when answering this question; however, the key to a firm answer is to show that you are capable of performing well in either setting. Discuss the environment in which you currently function, and how you ensure that you are successful in your day to day performance.

Rachelle's Answer #1
"Currently, I perform most of my tasks in a group setting. I am a strong collaborator and know how to gain buy-in from my team, gaining their excitement when it comes to new projects. With that said, I am also very capable of generating great ideas when I work on my own."
Rachelle's Answer #2
"I love group settings and would choose a team based role over an independent role any day. I can certainly deliver on my own - in fact, I spent many years as a freelance editor; however, my preference is to work in a collaborative environment."
8.
What challenges are you looking for in a position?
A perfect employment fit needs to go both ways. Just like the interviewer needs to know that they like you, they want to see that you love them back! Mention a few of the challenges that you are looking for in your next position and be sure to tie them into the duties and responsibilities mentioned in the job posting, or job description.

A challenge you may be looking for could be:

- Learning a new software program
- Leading a bigger team than you currently do
- Higher sales quotas
- A larger sales territory
- A larger client base
- A more prominent range of products or services
- Stepping into your first leadership role

Rachelle's Answer #1
"When I started looking for a new job in publishing, it was important to me that I find a role that offered an opportunity to learn the latest and greatest software. My current organization is very 'old-school' in their systems, and I do not want to fall behind in my technical abilities. I appreciate that Sandhills works with the latest software and even recently implemented cloud-based solutions for publishing projects."
Rachelle's Answer #2
"For the past six years I have worked for a wonderful publisher; however, I now have bigger fish to fry! I want to take on a larger project base with a more significant budget. I know that Sandhills will be able to offer this challenge and I look forward to growing my publishing career with you."
9.
Do you always double check or proofread your work?
The interviewer would like to know if you are the type to proofread your work before submitting it. Double checking and proofreading are vital parts of a job well done. Assure the interviewer that you are diligent when it comes to presenting good, clean, work.

Rachelle'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 essential to submit error-free work."
Rachelle's Answer #2
"I make a habit of using spell check; however, I also lean on the editor teams to ensure that no mistakes squeak through before anything goes to print."
10.
What feedback did you receive from your most recent manager?
Every manager has a different approach to giving feedback. Some prefer to save it for the performance review while others dish it out on the regular. Your response to feedback is much more important than the feedback itself. Even if it was negative, if you can take it as constructive criticism, you can improve yourself and your skills.

Rachelle's Answer #1
"My manager told me that I was spending too much time on the details of a project. I realized that I could be such a perfectionist that I lose track of time and am often hyper-focus on things that just aren't that important. I'm learning to prioritize the steps I need to take, and the required tasks when working on a bigger project."
Rachelle's Answer #2
"My most recent supervisor commended how hard I worked and gave me additional responsibilities beyond my role, which was a huge compliment. I feel good about my work ethic and talent. The areas for improvement she pointed out where not getting caught up in the details of a project, which I know I can spend too much time on."
11.
What work situations excite and motivate you?
The interviewer would like to know how to motivate you on the job. It is essential, for your success, that the hiring manager knows how to keep you motivated and excited to come to work every day. Share with the interviewer what they could do to ensure that you are happy and productive.

Rachelle's Answer #1
"I am a creative person and, as such, I love an environment with sociable colleagues. When a team is encouraged to get along and discuss ideas, it makes for excellent results."
Rachelle's Answer #2
"I get excited about brainstorming sessions, and contests. I'm competitive and like to work with my team to come up with new membership strategies and ways to make our readers happy while exceeding targets."
12.
How do you show your co-workers the importance of communication in the workplace?
The interviewer would like to know that you lead by example when it comes to communication in the workplace. Breakdown of communication in a business setting can have dire effects on the profitability of an organization. This effect is why it is essential, as a leader, to understand that 'telling' and 'showing' are two very different things when it comes to proper communication. Give examples of how you put dialogue into action in the workplace.

Rachelle's Answer #1
"I show my co-workers the importance of communication through my willingness to ask questions if I do not understand the first time. I do not pretend to know something to save face. By creating an environment where questions are encouraged, we have increased communication greatly, and have seen a higher productivity rate as a result."
Rachelle's Answer #2
"In publishing, we have to communicate every small detail of our projects. I encourage this with my team by asking everyone to use our internal project management app that tracks our progress and needs, every step of the way. It's like web-based sticky notes!"
13.
Why do you want this job?
Recruiters and hiring managers often receive hundreds of applications per job. If you are lucky enough to land an interview, make some effort and research the opportunity. Think about how this job with Sandhills will help you in your career. It's essential for you to know not only what you have to offer them, but what they can do for you.

While your passion and excitement for the job are essential, it's always good to have some hard facts to back it up. For instance, saying 'I have heard great things about your company, and I know I would be a great fit for this job,' is not very specific. If you find recent news articles or press releases which talk about the company's accomplishments, mention how that impressed you.

Rachelle's Answer #1
"Sandhills diversity in very well established publications offers the security that I am seeking in the publishing industry. A couple of years ago, I identified your company as the one for me and have been keeping my eye out for the right position ever since. I know that working here is the best next step to advance my publishing career and I am ready to help move your organization to the next big milestone with my years of experience in both magazine and digital sales."
Rachelle's Answer #2
"I'm interested in your company, and this position in particular, because I've been longing to get into the publishing space for quite a while. I have researched the many options in our city and chose to apply here because you are disrupting a market that needs disruption, by your use of traditional and digital channels. Your culture is top notch, and that comes through very well in your brand story."
14.
Which career development goals have you set for yourself this year?
The interviewer would like to know that you are motivated to better yourself personally, and professionally. Career development can come in many forms:

- Conferences
- Trade Shows
- Seminars & workshops
- Reading
- Podcasts
- Online coursework
- Finding a mentor

Discuss with the interviewer how you plan to develop yourself professionally this year and be sure to tie it into how this goal will benefit Sandhills, should they choose to hire you.

Rachelle's Answer #1
"Setting career goals is fundamental. This year I set the goal to be promoted to Assistant Editor. I achieved this goal just two months into the year! Now, I have set my sights on a more intermediate editing position. This career goal is what drove my application to Sandhills Publishing."
Rachelle's Answer #2
"The professional goal that I set for myself recently was to find a mentor within the publishing community to assist me in my career. Being newer to my professional career, I felt it was important to consult and meet with someone more seasoned than I. This move to have a mentor can only benefit me and, down the road, I hope to return the favor to someone else who needs a mentor."
15.
Tell me about a time when you were in danger of missing a deadline. What did you do?
This question is designed to learn how well you work under pressure, since pressure is the name of the game in the publishing industry. Avoid choosing a time that you were in danger of missing the deadline because of poor planning on your part such as procrastination. Instead, choose a situation that was out of your control.

Rachelle's Answer #1
"I was once part of a team that had a major set back based on the crash of our project management software. I went to the project backup database, quickly reviewed everyone's open tasks, rearranged the schedule and called an emergency team meeting to set us back on course. We barely made it in time, but we made it."
Rachelle's Answer #2
"I am tasked with cold calling 100 potential new advertisers per day. I had a chaotic week just a couple of weeks ago where the Monday was a holiday, on Tuesday our company database was down, and on Wednesday, I was out for half of the day on in-person client calls. This setback meant that I needed to complete five days of work in just 2.5. I spent a few hours of overtime and skipped my lunch breaks so that I would meet my target."
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