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The Sanmar Group 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.
Job Interviews     Companies     Business     Conglomerate    

Question 1 of 32

How do you define success?

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Answer Examples

1.

How do you define success?

What does success mean to you? Tell the interviewer how you see success and be sure to tie your answer into the success that you plan to bring to this particular position, should you be offered the role.

Rachelle's Answer #1

"I define success by my ability to reach the goals that are set out for me. On a personal level, the things I wish to achieve in my life. On a work level, the targets that are set out for me as well as the professional development that I seek."

Rachelle's Answer #2

"I define success by what we achieve as a team. The project, as a whole, needs to deliver on expectations before I consider the job a success."

2.

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."

3.

What sources do you look to when solving complicated problems?

The interviewer wants to know that you are able to think outside the box, or even ask for help, when you are stuck on a complicated problem. Show the interviewer that you are knowledgeable and equipped to handle these types of scenarios.

Rachelle's Answer #1

"When I am 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 #2

"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 in order to find the best way to solve the problem."

4.

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."

5.

The Sanmar Group 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 The Sanmar Group in great detail before your interview. Be prepared to discuss the global efforts currently underway and also research any local charity efforts that The Sanmar Group supports. Discuss your own personal values and how they align with the values at The Sanmar Group.

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 The Sanmar Group 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.

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?"

7.

When have you had to lead by example?

The interviewer wants to know that you are aware of the need to always lead by example.

"All the time!" As a leader, your actions, decisions, and demeanour are always under some form of scrutiny. The most stressful workplace situations often surround change so it's a great idea to talk about a time when your organization went through a major change. Change can be very challenging for some people. Discuss how you accept change with a positive attitude.

Perhaps a new software system was being implemented. Maybe your company was being acquired. Perhaps a change occurred in your senior leadership. Talk about how easily your team could have leaned towards negativity by becoming unmotivated, or acting fearful of the change. Highlight that you have genuine excitement surrounding the possibilities that come with change and that this excitement rubs off on your team.

Rachelle's Answer #1

"All the time!"

Rachelle's Answer #2

"I often lead by example when it comes to mandatory overtime. I work in an order-driven environment and sometimes we have to work late to get the job done. I don't let my peers see me get upset at last minute announcements."

8.

We are asking for 8 years of industry experience and you have just 5. Why do you think you are qualified for this position?

To many employers, the number of years' experience is flexible - so long as you have the results to show for the years that you do have. Talk to the interviewer about your major career successes. This is the time to sell yourself. Make no apologies for your lack of years!

Rachelle's Answer #1

"Although I have 5 years' experience vs 8 years' experience I can absolutely do this job well. In my previous role, I was outperforming colleagues who had 12 years of experience. To me, it's all about drive and ability to be a quick study. I have all of these qualities and more."

Rachelle's Answer #2

"Along with my 5 years working in this industry, I hope that my graduate degree gives me a little boost in experience over the required undergraduate degree."

9.

Because The Sanmar Group 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."

10.

Typical "corporate culture" is something that we work to avoid here at The Sanmar Group. 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 The Sanmar Group long term.

Rachelle's Answer #1

"I am seeking a role with an organization like The Sanmar Group 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."

11.

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?

There are many ways that you can be a fit for a position, even though you do not come with direct industry experience. Think about the variety of skills that you have and how those can benefit another employer, despite the industry. These are your transferable skills and they can include sales abilities, customer service experience, and software skills.

Rachelle's Answer #1

"Although my background is not in your precise industry, I have worked with many clients who have been in your industry. I bring excellent transferable skills that qualify me for this position. These skills include my advanced abilities in Excel, my outstanding cold-calling abilities as well as my proven background in team leadership."

Rachelle's Answer #2

"I bring a lot of transferable skills to this position and industry. At the end of the day, my talents and skills revolve around helping people and making companies profitable."

12.

At The Sanmar Group 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 The Sanmar Group. 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 The Sanmar Group 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"

13.

At The Sanmar Group 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?"

14.

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."

15.

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."

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Explore expert tips and resources to be more confident in your next interview.
Behavioral
Common
Phone
Tough
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All Interview Topics
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Interview Q&As
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32 The Sanmar Group 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. How do you define success?
  2. Have you ever been employed through a company merger or acquisition? If so, tell me about your experience.
  3. What sources do you look to when solving complicated problems?
  4. Tell me about a time when you made a suggestion requesting change in an organization.
  5. The Sanmar Group 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. At your current or former place of employment, how important was communication and dealing with others?
  7. When have you had to lead by example?
  8. We are asking for 8 years of industry experience and you have just 5. Why do you think you are qualified for this position?
  9. Because The Sanmar Group 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?
  10. Typical "corporate culture" is something that we work to avoid here at The Sanmar Group. Tell me about your ideal workplace culture.
  11. 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?
  12. At The Sanmar Group we put a lot of emphasis on clear communication between all parties, departments, and sectors of our business. Tell me about your communication style.
  13. At The Sanmar Group 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?
  14. Tell me about your greatest work related accomplishment.
  15. What are your strengths?
  16. Tell me about your education.
  17. We have a few strong competitors. In your opinion, what does The Sanmar Group do to stand out from the rest?
  18. Being a multi-national organization, there are many opportunities for career growth here. If hired, where would you like to take your career with The Sanmar Group?
  19. At The Sanmar Group 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?
  20. Tell me about the last time you undertook a project that demanded a lot of initiative.
  21. Have you ever taken a role in a company that hasn't fit into your long-term career plans?
  22. What type of work environment allows you to be the most productive?
  23. How do you like to encourage ideas in others?
  24. How would your co-workers describe your attention to detail?
  25. On a scale from 1 to 10, how honest are you?
  26. As a manager, who has been your greatest influence? A person that has defined what type of leader you wish to be.
  27. How do you balance life and work?
  28. What was the most challenging aspect of your previous job? How did you overcome it?
  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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