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USPS Interview
Questions

25 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 25

Describe your ideal manager.

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USPS Interview Questions

  1. 1.

    Describe your ideal manager.

      The interviewer wants you to identify leadership qualities to see what you are looking for in a manager or boss. Here is a short list we came up with that might help jog your memory:

      1) Honest
      2) Good communicator
      3) Good listener
      4) Committed
      5) Positive

      You may not have ever worked for someone with these qualities. However, you have probably learned what helps you be successful from teachers, professors or managers from your past. Give an example of something they did that impressed you, like giving you positive feedback and encouraging you when you were struggling to meet a goal.

      Rachelle's Answer

      "My ideal manager is someone who is patient, kind, and willing to train me in any area they see fit. I like to work with people who know there is room at the top for everyone and is not afraid to help others gain footing in their career."

      Anonymous Answer

      "My ideal manager is somebody that can communicate well to others and has a positive outlook on the job. A person that has patients to teach me new techniques."

      Lauren's Answer

      Wonderful. I suggest adding in what a great manager does for your productivity, since a perspective employer could find this useful in getting to know you.

      "My ideal manager is a person who communicates in a positive, healthy way and teaches me new skills. I would love to be in an environment where I can learn new things. A great manager helps create a great atmosphere, which in turn creates great employees. I would be highly motivated by having a positive, strong manager."

      Was this answer helpful? Yes (2) or No (0)
      Anonymous Answer

      "My ideal manager is someone that is a good listener and communicator, willing to train you to become a better employee."

      Rachelle's Answer

      Wonderful! Try to keep your answer personalized, using 'me' rather than 'you.'

      "My ideal manager is someone that is a good listener and communicator; someone willing to train me to become a better employee."

      Was this answer helpful? Yes or No
  2. 2.

    Tell me about yourself.

      Now is a great time to share a few basic facts that will spark the interviewer's attention. You may want to talk about your education, your interests or your goals. Focus on your accomplishments! When you talk about benefits, you can speak of a community group you're involved with like a sports team or a place you like to volunteer. You want to keep it professional and relatable. Stay positive and upbeat to keep the interviewer engaged!

      Rachelle's Answer

      "Professionally, I'd describe myself as competitive and extroverted; I am in sales after all. Contests, encouragement, accolades motivate me, and of course, the financial carrot dangling in front of my nose. At the same time, I love a team environment and know that culture and mutual respect play such a huge role in my success. On a more personal note, I love to spend time with my family and travel as often as possible."

  3. 3.

    Why is it important to offer great customer service at the post office?

      At the U.S. Postal Service, postage, products, and services fund all operations. If you want to help support the business, you've got to keep that friendly smile on your face! In a customer-facing role, you are the face of the company. You represent their values and their mission to provide services that help connect people and help businesses grow. Explain to the interviewer that you understand how your actions reflect upon the company, coworkers, and customers.

      Rachelle's Answer

      "Great customer service should be expected everywhere you go not only because it's important to be a positive face of the organization, but also because it's important to treat everyone the same way you would want to be treated. It's a simple human philosophy that I try to embody in everything that I do."

  4. 4.

    Why do you want to work for USPS?

      USPS wants to hire individuals who are reliable and also those who are willing to work hard to get the job done right. You want them to know that you fit the profile of the type of candidate for which they are looking. But first, you want to butter them up a little bit! After a bit of research, you will learn about their mission to create new products and services to meet the needs of their customers.

      They strive to keep up with the latest technology to make sure packages and mail are delivered as quickly as possible. Review the website and then consider checking out what people are saying about them on glassdoor.com. If you are impressed by the employee reviews, talk about their reputation. Companies love to hear about the good things future employees are looking forward to experiencing! It makes them feel good and shows you are not looking for just any job. Find two the three positive qualities about the company and talk about how they excite or impress you.

      Rachelle's Answer

      "I want to work for USPS for a few reasons. First, you have a solid reputation in the logistics industry, and second, you are an undeniable leader. Third, I saw many great employee and customer reviews. I would be proud to work for such a well-established organization."

      Anonymous Answer

      "I want to work for the USPS because it is a great company that is stable. I love to learn new jobs and positions thru out the company and strive for customer service. I would be proud to work for a company like this."

      Lauren's Answer

      Very solid response! I assisted with some alternate wording.

      "USPS is an extremely recognizable company with high service standards. I would be proud to work for such a large, stable company. I strive to grow in my customer service career, and I believe this position would give me the growth opportunity I am looking for. I have aspirations to grow within the company as well, so the more learning I can have on the job, the better."

      Was this answer helpful? Yes (5) or No (3)
      Anonymous Answer

      "I want to work for USPS because this is a great company which is explicitly authorized by the United States constitution and an executive branch of United States federal government. I would be proud to work place like this."

      Rachelle's Answer

      Try offering a suggestion that is more personal and less to do with the business structure. You can find positive things about USPS by a quick Google search.

      "I want to work for USPS because you offer your team members through training, and ways to move up in the organization. I read online that you have specific programs for recent grads and skills matching for applicants with military experience."

      Was this answer helpful? Yes (3) or No (2)
  5. 5.

    Give me an example of how you manage your time.

      In a busy work environment, everyone needs a little help staying on track and on time. Many tips and tricks can help you manage deadlines and complete projects. One of the most helpful tools to start with is a calendar. By maintaining a schedule online and even a written one will help you with anything from keeping appointments to managing your daily to-do list. Talk about what works for you. Everyone has a method to their madness, so think through the tools that have helped you be successful in the past. Or, in thinking about this new position, think about what will help you complete all of your responsibilities.

      Rachelle's Answer

      "There are a few tools I use daily that always help. My online calendar connected to my email always helps me with managing appointments and events. My to-do list helps me stay on task every day, and who doesn't love checking things off when they get done?! I like to stay organized and check my list throughout the day, re-prioritizing if I need to."

      Anonymous Answer

      "When I was working as a store manager I used to manage my time by making a check-list, by listing the task according to its priority."

      Rachelle's Answer

      "I am a very task-oriented person, so I like to manage my time by working through my to-do lists. I prioritize my most important tasks first and complete my to-do list in that fashion."

      Was this answer helpful? Yes or No
  6. 6.

    What is your greatest strength?

      Think of the traits that have helped you succeed in the past. You can draw from your experiences in school or activities if you lack in work experience. Having great people skills, being positive and a good listener are all strengths worth sharing. Next, talk about how this strength will help you in the workplace! Your positive attitude keeps you and your coworkers in a good mood all day! Your listening skills make solving customer issues a breeze! Whatever your strength may be, link it back to how it positively impacts your work environment.

      Some strengths you could mention are:

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

      Rachelle's Answer

      "I have a lot of strengths that will be put to great use in this role with USPS. My most significant strength is the fact that I am very tech savvy and can pick up any complicated CRM or project management system out there. The downtime to train me would be minimal."

      Anonymous Answer

      "I am hard-working, I never give up, and I have tenacity. I am willing to learn."

      Rachelle's Answer

      These are excellent strengths! Try to elaborate a bit, making your response sound more conversational.

      "I have a variety of strengths to bring to USPS. My most significant strength is the fact that I am tenacious and hardworking. I will never give up, and am willing to learn new tasks."

      Was this answer helpful? Yes or No
      Anonymous Answer

      "My greatest strength is my ability to handle stressful situations easily and my positive attitude towards my work."

      Rachelle's Answer

      Good response! Both strengths are points any interviewer would want to see in a candidate.

      Was this answer helpful? Yes or No
  7. 7.

    If I ask you to do something in a way you are not used to, how would you handle this?

      This question gives you a chance to show off your ability to listen and respond according to what you are being asked to do. Listening is a skill that requires paying close attention and observing. Thinking of an example might help you to process in your mind the way you would handle a situation such as this. Writing down your example will help you be even more prepared!

      Rachelle's Answer

      "I would make sure I was clear about what you were asking me to do first. I may even ask you to show me if I'm not clear. I always listen carefully when someone is teaching me something new or asking me to do things differently to make sure I will perform the task as directed."

      Anonymous Answer

      "I specifically ask for special directions and also a time frame."

      Rachelle's Answer

      This is a great way to approach a new task. I have re-worded your response slightly, to help with the flow.

      "If asked to do something in a new way, I would specifically ask for special directions. I would also ask for a timeframe to ensure I was clear on the expectations."

      Was this answer helpful? Yes or No
      Anonymous Answer

      "I would appreciate if someone is teaching me how things can be done in a better way because this is how we update our skill by learning new things in a new way."

      Rachelle's Answer

      Good response. It's important to show an interviewer that you like to update your knowledge and learn new skills.

      Was this answer helpful? Yes or No
  8. 8.

    Tell me about your greatest achievement so far.

      If you are struggling to think of an accomplishment worth sharing, don't fret! You can start by looking over your resume, glancing at some of those shining moments from your work and volunteer experience. When you answer this question, start off by explaining the accomplishment and why it was great for you. Stories about overcoming obstacles and achieving challenging goals are always great to share! Give an example that shows you are determined and motivated.

      Rachelle's Answer

      "My greatest career accomplishment is the fact that, in my current company, I gained a promotion faster than anyone in the organization's entire history. I received accolades from the VP of Operations, which was an extraordinary moment. Exceeding expectations, and being promoted due to great customer feedback was exhilarating."

      Anonymous Answer

      "Recently I was working for Target, and I was in the receiving department. After two months of higher performance, reaching good results in productivity, they start training me as a problem solver on the assembly line."

      Rachelle's Answer

      This achievement is a great example! I have worked on the wording just a touch.

      "My greatest achievement is earning a promotion after just two months in Amazon's receiving department. Due to my great results, high level of performance and productivity, the leaders trained me on assembly line troubleshooting."

      Was this answer helpful? Yes or No
      Anonymous Answer

      "My greatest achievement would be elevating myself from kitchen helper to a supervisor in a restaurant."

      Rachelle's Answer

      "My greatest achievement so far would be working my way up from a kitchen helper to a waiter. I worked extremely hard to get that promotion, and am proud of the work I did to get there."

      Was this answer helpful? Yes or No
  9. 9.

    What challenges do you anticipate in this new role?

      Starting a new job is exciting! It gives you the opportunity to learn new skills and overcome challenges you haven't faced before. Whether you are applying for a customer-facing role or your role is more technology focused, identify a couple of responsibilities where you anticipate a little bit of a learning curve. It's okay not to know everything! It's also better for you to admit it from the beginning than to come of up with some vague statement to try to prove you are experienced in something you are not. Interviewers will see right through it! Be honest about the challenges and be brave enough to ask questions. Do a little research before the interview on any task, software or system with which you are unfamiliar.

      Rachelle's Answer

      "I anticipate that the biggest challenge will be to learn your software and CRM systems. I am quite tech savvy, yet I imagine that being such a huge corporation, USPS will have a very intricate and robust system. I look forward to the challenge!"

      Anonymous Answer

      "As a City Carrier, one of the challenges could be not knowing the route. I am pretty confident with training and repetitive tasks and I will get better with experience."

      Rachelle's Answer

      Nice response! It's perfect how you referred to the fact that you will improve over time, with repetition.

      Was this answer helpful? Yes or No
      Anonymous Answer

      "Starting a new job is exciting! I will anticipate the biggest challenge will be learning the software, but I love new challenges."

      Lauren's Answer

      Fantastic response! You are conveying a spark and energy that is highly attractive for the interviewer. Great job! I assisted with a slight edit.

      "Starting a new position is exciting! I anticipate challenges with learning a new position, particularly the software. But, I am a very fast learner and consider myself technologically savvy, so I welcome the challenge."

      Was this answer helpful? Yes or No
  10. 10.

    Tell me about a time when you gave excellent customer service.

      Before you give an example, think about what excellent customer service means to you. Some people enjoy making the customer happy and receiving positive feedback after an interaction. Others like the satisfaction of solving problems. You want to show the interviewer that you treat customers with respect and take great care to resolve issues. Explain some of the elements of customer service that you displayed in your example, like empathy and patience.

      Rachelle's Answer

      "I was working in a call center, and a woman called who was upset about her account. I could tell she needed to vent and I wasn't quite sure what the actual problem was, so I listened first. Then I asked questions to figure out what was going on. She was so appreciative of me because I was able to think on my feet and troubleshoot to solve the problem quickly. She even apologized for raising her tone of voice and thanked me for my patience."

  11. 11.

    Give me an example of how you have been reliable in the past.

      Demonstrate how you follow through by showing up and taking care of your responsibilities. A manager will be enthusiastic about hiring someone they feel can fulfill daily duties with integrity. Give an example that proves you are dependable and can be entrusted to handle your responsibilities.

      Rachelle's Answer

      "I use to work the morning shift at a coffee shop. I arrived every morning at 6 a.m. and was always on time, making sure that everything was set up before the customers arrived. I never complained about having to be there early and took pride in my espresso making skills. A customer even told my manager that the only reason he came to our coffee shop was that he loved seeing my smiling face!"

      Anonymous Answer

      "I used to work in a restaurant in New York when there was a hurricane. Most of the businesses were closed, but our restaurant owner wanted the business open. No other employee was ready to work, but I thought this is the time when the company needed me most so I opted in. On that day I was working as a dishwasher, server, bartender and food runner by my self. The business worked smoothly, and the customers were happy."

      Rachelle's Answer

      Very good example of a time when you stood out above the rest!

      Was this answer helpful? Yes or No
  12. 12.

    Tell me about a time you worked with a group to accomplish a goal.

      The interviewer wants to hear some context about the situation, how you acted and what the results were. Every time you answer a question requesting an example, you can frame your answer the same way: 1) Context - explain the situation and the task you were addressing.
      2) Action - share what you did to handle the problem or accomplish the goal.
      3) Results - explain what happened through the actions of you and your team. What did you create? How were your actions effective?

      When talking about your actions, share how you contributed toward the goal of your and communication with the group.

      "When I leased apartments for an apartment complex, we had a goal of reaching 100% occupancy during the busy months. Each of us contributed to every lease. I made a point to make the most of every interaction with a potential customer, being consistent and always providing outstanding service with a smile. My coworkers and I made a pact to be encouraging and supportive of each other, checking in during our weekly meetings to see how we can help each other reach our goal. That summer my leasing team reached 100% occupancy each month!"

      Rachelle's Answer

      "When I leased apartments for an apartment complex, we had a goal of reaching 100% occupancy during the busy months. Each of us contributed to every lease. I made a point to make the most of every interaction with a potential customer, being consistent and always providing outstanding service with a smile. My coworkers and I made a pact to be encouraging and supportive of each other, checking in during our weekly meetings to see how we can help each other reach our goal. That summer my leasing team reached 100% occupancy each month!"

      Anonymous Answer

      "When I was working at Target, I had a group project in the cosmetic department. Our goal was to increase sales by 2% weekly. We brainstormed, and we came up with a solution to create add-on items at the register and promotions on items so that they had enough gross margin to make a profit and reduce our inventory."

      Rachelle's Answer

      Your response is specific, and the interviewer will appreciate the numbers that you provide as well. I have reworded slightly, to help with flow.

      "When I was working at Walgreens, I had a group project in the cosmetic department. Our goal was to increase weekly sales by 2%. To achieve this, we brainstormed and came up with a solution to create add-on items at the register. We were sure to choose add-on items that had enough gross margin to make a profit while lowering our inventory."

      Was this answer helpful? Yes or No
      Anonymous Answer

      "i was working in amazon as a picker and we were short of employee in our team. and we had to meet a target but it was like impossible on that day. but we managed to to it by cutting our two 15 min break and fortunately able meet that target of the day."

      Rachelle's Answer

      This is a nice example of teamwork. Try giving some detail about how many team members you collaborated with. If this was your idea, be sure to point that out.

      "While working as a picker at Amazon, we were short-staffed one day, making it seem that we would not be able to meet our target. My team, which consisted of 15 pickers, collectively decided to cut our two, 15-minute breaks. By doing this, we added 7.5 extra hours of labor, ensuring that we met our target for the day."

      Was this answer helpful? Yes or No
  13. 13.

    On busy days, how do you manage your daily tasks?

      Sometimes being busy means that you are bombarded with customer calls and navigating one crisis after the next! Unfortunately, you don't always get to control your to-do list! Managing daily tasks starts with managing stress. If you can stay calm, you will be much more useful at handling any job. You can still take control by putting things on your calendar, adding items to your to-do list and checking them off as you go about your day. Think about what helps you manage the hustle and bustle of your hectic days!

      Rachelle's Answer

      "I will determine which task needs my attention the most by urgency or deadline. I am comfortable delegating or even putting extra hours in when necessary. I am strong when it comes to time management."

      Anonymous Answer

      "I will prioritize my task according to its importance level and determining the time it might take."

      Rachelle's Answer

      Good answer! Do you use any special tools or software to stay on track? If so, be sure to mention those as well.

      Was this answer helpful? Yes or No
  14. 14.

    Give me an example that demonstrates your attention to detail.

      The only way to prove you have impeccable attention to details is by painting a picture through giving a well-articulated example. If you are interviewing for a role focused on customer service, you might want to share how your attention to detail helped you resolve a customer issue. You can also give an example from your education, sharing how this skill helped you be successful on a group project or presentation. Break it down. Share the details you looked for when you identified the problem and how that approach helped you be more effective. Be specific, clear and concise!

      Rachelle's Answer

      "I have to be extra thorough from time to time when I have clients that are especially detail oriented. Often this will mean spending additional time on calls with them to highlight project changes. I am okay with being extra thorough when needed."

      Anonymous Answer

      "My initial background was in Hospitality. At my previous company, customer service was a high priority. At the front desk, people are trained to welcome their customer by first and last name before they check in. Special flags informed you what the hotel guest liked or not. There was also a security alert which prompted constant attention to detail."

      Rachelle's Answer

      It sounds like you learned to pay very close attention to the details here! I have reworded it just a touch. Please see below.

      "My original background is in hospitality. I received training in customer service at the Ritz Carlton where customer service is second to none. Training included welcoming our guests by first and last name. We also had a special flag in our customer management software that alerted us on what the hotel guests liked and disliked. I learned a great deal about the importance of small details in this role."

      Was this answer helpful? Yes or No
      Anonymous Answer

      "I used to work in a restaurant and had to make sure that all the tables are set up properly, like if anything is missing, or anything seems dirty. Besides that while taking orders following the chain of command like asking about allergies and describing the specials."

      Rachelle's Answer

      Try to lead with the most important parts of memorization and detail that go into your role. This will grab the interviewers' attention much faster.

      "Customer food allergies are a top concern so, while working as a server, it was important that I always pay keen attention to everything my customer says. In addition to those details, I also kept a firm eye on cleanliness and proper table setup."

      Was this answer helpful? Yes or No
  15. 15.

    How do you handle unexpected situations that might cause you to be late for work?

      Breakdowns, wrecks, traffic jams, rain storms... the possibilities that could interfere with your morning route to work are endless. You want to show that you can be counted on to show up for your shift. Give an example that shows you take the most responsible approach to these predicaments.

      Rachelle's Answer

      "I always arrive to work at least 15 minutes before I am expected to be there, to give me extra time in case something happens. I also make sure I have the numbers of my coworkers and my boss so that I can call to let them know if I'm stuck or might be running late."

      Anonymous Answer

      "I always arrive 15 minutes earlier before my shift starts, especially during bad weather or traffic. Also, I would have on file phone numbers of my coworker and manager to let them know that there was a chance I could be late."

      Rachelle's Answer

      These examples are wonderful, and show the interviewer that you are reliable and able to troubleshoot problems under pressure.

      "I always arrive 15 minutes early for my shift, especially during bad weather or peak traffic times. I also have my managers phone number on hand, as well as some coworkers, so that I can contact someone if there is an emergency causing me to be late."

      Was this answer helpful? Yes or No
      Anonymous Answer

      "I always try to leave for work early so that I can reach there at least 10-15 min early than being late. I would inform the supervisor or boss that I am getting late and reason for it."

      Rachelle's Answer

      Good reasoning in your answer. It's great that you always strive to be early for work.

      Was this answer helpful? Yes or No
  16. 16.

    Tell me about your work experience.

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  17. 17.

    What are your career goals?

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  18. 18.

    How would you handle an irate customer?

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  19. 19.

    What is you greatest weakness? What are you doing to improve?

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  20. 20.

    How would you handle conflict with a coworker?

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  21. 21.

    Are you willing to work overtime, nights, weekends?

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  22. 22.

    Tell me about a situation where you dealt with an upset customer. How did you handle it?

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  23. 23.

    How would your former employer describe you?

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  24. 24.

    What motivates you to work hard?

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  25. 25.

    Do you work well under pressure?

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