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United Utilities Interview
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29 Questions and Answers by Ryan Brown
Job Interviews     Companies     Business     Communication Services    

Question 1 of 29

At United Utilities, we give everyone the opportunity to be a mentor. Have you had the opportunity to teach an important skill to a co-worker?

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Answer Examples

1.

At United Utilities, we give everyone the opportunity to be a mentor. Have you had the opportunity to teach an important skill to a co-worker?

Interviewers want to hear that you have experience teaching or mentoring other employees one-on-one. You may have taught a new hire all of your department's standard processes. Perhaps you taught a long-standing employee how to use Excel. You may have mentored an employee who was struggling to hit their monthly goals. All of these scenarios are great examples to draw on. Better yet, if you have personally seen someone struggling with workplace skills or knowledge, approached them, and offered to mentor them, it is a shining example of leadership!

Whatever your scenario may be, tell the interviewer what you helped the person with, while highlighting the positive outcome of their skills improvement.

Ryan's Answer #1

"Last week our company introduced a new module in our SAP system. I could see that our contracted HR Assistant was having some troubles with the new module. I was familiar with it already, so I offered to help him learn the module. We spent his lunch hour for the next three days working on it. He perfected the module and our company was so impressed with his dedication to learning that they are now trying to find room to hire him on a full time, permanent basis."

Ryan's Answer #2

"Absolutely. In each of my two previous roles, I have been tasked with leading a small team. I have worked on everything from appointment setting and overcoming objections to price negotiations with those respective teams. What's more, I always look for an opportunity to connect with the new folks to the team. I try to always invite them out for coffee so not only they have a friendly face in the office, but also so I can be a resource to them. I was promoted from their role, so I am always happy to share how I did it on such a fast timeline and what I've found effective that can help them be a change-maker in the company, too."

2.

Tell me about your experiences giving presentations in front of large groups.

Public speaking can be intimidating so assure the interviewer that you are capable of communicating well in front of large groups. Have you taken any courses or training in public speaking? Perhaps you have so much experience that it comes second nature. Assure the interviewer that you are capable of giving presentations should it be required in your role with United Utilities, Inc..

Ryan's Answer #1

"In my last two roles I have been responsible for regularly presenting to my team of 43 staff as well as to our entire warehouse team of over 200. I have taken a couple of Toastmasters sessions which helped a great deal. I am a confident public speaker."

Ryan's Answer #2

"I do not have a lot of experience in presenting to large groups. Perhaps, 4-6 people at most. I am a confident public speaker and am sure that I could present in front of many people."

3.

Work volumes can become very high at United Utilities. How do you handle a larger than average workload?

The interviewer wants to be assured that you can handle the workload required of you in this position and that you will not become overwhelmed if/when workloads unexpectedly increase. When workloads increase, stress levels do too. How do you react?

Ryan's Answer #1

"When I have a large workload on my plate, I do not stress over the tasks that are in front of me. Rather, I make a simple plan of which tasks are a high priority and which tasks are a lower priority. The higher priority tasks, I complete first. Through this system, I can focus on my tasks individually, rather than stress out by the multitude of tasks ahead of me."

Ryan's Answer #2

"Here are some suggestions on how to handle a large workload:

- List your tasks and prioritize them
- Think of which tasks add to the company's bottom line, and start there (Closest to the money!)
- Exhale. Relax for a minute and collect yourself
- Organize your tasks by which ones you can complete independently and which ones you need help with
- Take sufficient breaks, so you do not exhaust yourself
- Communicate your struggles with your leadership or team"

4.

How do you handle a situation where your supervisor does not properly communicate information to you?

You cannot force others to communicate with you in a way that you would always prefer. Talk to the interviewer about a time that you have handled a supervisor who does not correspond with you in a way that you like. The way you answer this question will also set the stage for how you wish to be communicated with should you join United Utilities, Inc..

Ryan's Answer #1

"Whenever I have had a supervisor who does not properly communicate with me, I try to learn their style of communication and emulate it. Sometimes you have to relate to others in their own style to be understood."

Ryan's Answer #2

"There are times in business when this happens. I make sure I regroup with the supervisor to explain the strain a gap in communication causes on the team. I then go into mending mode, ensuring the information that needs to be communicated gets disseminated out to the team."

5.

How can United Utilities motivate you, as a leader?

Your motivation may be that the idea of success and achievement drives you. Perhaps you are working towards career advancement. Take some time to think about what truly motivates you.

Ryan's Answer #1

"I am motivated by words of encouragement and compensation based rewards. This could be a competition for a gift card or a contest where I can earn a bigger holiday party budget for my team. Being a leader comes naturally to me, so I don't find it to be a taxing task very often. My competitive side keeps me motivated, as well."

Ryan's Answer #2

"I am motivated by a company that is ethical and strives to do the right thing. I am at my best when I am trusted and allowed to make decisions to remain on the straight and narrow."

6.

United Utilities encourages continued education. Tell me about a time when you took on a new course to study in order to improve your own work performance.

Once you are in your career, it certainly doesn't mean that you need to stop learning. There are many job-related courses available. Talk to the interviewer about the last time you took advantage of these available courses. Discuss your interest in continuing your education even after joining United Utilities, Inc..

Ryan's Answer #1

"Our company offered the Sandler Sales program to anyone in the company who was interested. I took this workshop in 2014 and really enjoyed it. My sales increased by 23% that year."

Ryan's Answer #2

"Last year, I worked towards my Project Manager certification while working full time. That experience alone greatly increased my multitasking skills. The PM Certification is a great addition to my already existing management skill set."

7.

What do you know about the culture at United Utilities?

Company culture and fit is a significant factor when considering a career move. Assure the interviewer that you have put thought, research, and consideration of how the company culture at United Utilities, Inc. will work for you.

Ryan's Answer #1

"I have researched United Utilities, Inc. through your social media channels, and on glassdoor.com. Your employees have great things to say, and overall it seems that you have fun while you work. I am looking forward to joining an organization, like yours, that is upbeat and thoughtful with an eye on helping the community at the same time."

Ryan's Answer #2

"I read many positive reviews online about the organization level and culture at United Utilities, Inc.. You offer great incentives to keep people motivated, and it seems to be the type of fast-paced environment that values innovation and performance. My type of place!"

8.

If you were given a choice, which work related task would you leave for last? Why?

Often we will leave the tasks that we don't like for last in the act of procrastination. Other times, we will mindfully move a particular responsibility for last because we feel that it makes the most sense. Help the interviewer to determine which personality type you are by answering this question.

Ryan's Answer #1

"If given a choice, I would leave my documentation tasks for last. I say this because I like to spend my time selling and hitting targets so anything to do with documentation during business hours - I feel takes away from my business development tasks. I do understand the importance of it, though."

Ryan's Answer #2

"I tend to leave the hardest assignments for last. It is not because I dread them, but because I can make a lot more people happy by completing their small requests first and getting them back to work."

9.

Tell me about a time when you improved communication between yourself and a co-worker or client.

Possessing the skills to improve communication in the workplace is a very valuable asset. Talk to the interviewer about your ability to enhance communication in the workplace. Be sure to tie in how your skills will benefit United Utilities, Inc..

Ryan's Answer #1

"In my current position I have one particular client who was an exceptionally brief communicator. If I asked two questions, he would answer just one. I learned quickly that he would not acknowledge anything for which he did not have a direct answer. I began to ask him questions in a different way. For example, I would say 'Do you have an answer for me on question X?' and he would say yes or no. We would then go from there. This method was an effective form of communication for that particular client. I have a few approaches that will be useful when working for United Utilities, Inc.."

Ryan's Answer #2

"I had a client who often missed email updates. It caused us to cross our wires a few times. I suggested that we book a quick call every week to review any outstanding areas that need to be addressed. This process worked well for us, and I believe it would work we will United Utilities, Inc. as well."

10.

We value communication at United Utilities. Rate your communication skills from 1-10 with proper examples backing your given rating.

On a scale of 1-10, how skilled are you in communication? Why did you choose that particular rating for yourself?

Ryan's Answer #1

"I rate my communication skills as a 9/10 as I will, on occasion, have times when I am not as clear as I would like to be. My supervisor and co-workers will attest to my clear and concise communication skills. Because I am an open leader, my team will let me know if I need to clarify anything."

Ryan's Answer #2

"I will rate myself an 8.5 because I consider myself a strong communicator. It is the foundation of all success in business. I am always striving to be a better communicator, so I leave the rest of the scale as an aspirational measure."

11.

Tell me about a time when your communication skills greatly benefited your team.

Strong communication skills are required to be an effective leader. How have your communication skills helped your team in the past, and how will they help the team at United Utilities, Inc.?

Ryan's Answer #1

"My team is made up of great communicators whom I have trained to take every piece of information and break it down into the simplest factor. This approach has greatly reduced in-house issues related to communication."

Ryan's Answer #2

"We recently rolled out a large organizational change. I took a very transparent approach to communication throughout the process. I asked the team for feedback and buy-in early in the process. We discussed some challenges that could be expected. Therefore, when the time came to roll out the change, there were very few surprises. It was a success!"

12.

When entering a new job, describe how you build relationships with your new coworkers and supervisors.

Due to a wide variety of personalities, relationships can take time to form. How do you ensure that you have a strong line of communication with your co-workers and supervisors, right from the start?

Ryan's Answer #1

"I understand that some relationships come quickly and others take time to nurture. When starting a new job all that I can do is be my true self and let my personality, integrity, and reliability speak for itself."

Ryan's Answer #2

"First impressions are everything, and I make a strong attempt to build relationships with all of my peers right up front when starting a new job. I schedule meetings to make an introduction and ask discovery questions to learn how I can best support them when working together. It is also important to gain insight into their preferred methods of communications."

13.

What experience do you have using team-based messaging applications?

There are many options for communication software and messaging applications. Give the interviewer a brief overview of the applications you are experienced in and assure them that you can learn their internal system, should it be new to you.

Ryan's Answer #1

"I have used a variety of team-based messaging applications. I am best versed in Slack and Freedcamp. No matter which system you use I am sure that I can pick it up very quickly."

Ryan's Answer #2

"I do not have a lot of experience with team-based messaging applications besides MSN Messenger years ago. I do pick up on technology quickly and have no concerns when it comes to my ability to learn. What team-based messaging applications do you use at United Utilities, Inc.?"

14.

How would you describe your written communication skills?

Being a clear communicator, in written form, is a crucial skill to master. Have you taken any courses in communication and writing? Are you confident in your written communication skills? Talk to the interviewer about your written communication abilities and support your answer with a brief example or story.

Ryan's Answer #1

"I would describe my written communication skills as very strong and would rate myself as a 9/10. I have always had a penchant for writing and have taken university courses related to communication, writing, and journalism."

Ryan's Answer #2

"My written communication skills are solid. I often utilize written communications as a follow up to verbal communications. They provide a great resource for associates to go back to and reference, plus might answer any questions that come up along the way."

15.

How do you handle communicating bad news to a fellow worker or subordinate?

One of the toughest parts of communication can be delivering bad news to people that you work with and care for. Whether it is delivering a less than positive work review or terminating someone - it doesn't come easy. Assure the interviewer that you can handle this type of task in a transparent, concise, and professional manner.

Ryan's Answer #1

"I certainly do not enjoy communicating bad news to a co-worker, but I do have experience in doing so. When this type of task is required of me, I make sure to practice empathy. Truth is always key, so I will be honest and clear when communicating the news. For instance, if I am to terminate someone's employment, I will not sugar coat the reasons why. It's best they know so that they can learn from the experience."

Ryan's Answer #2

"I am very to-the-point when it comes to my communication skills. Good or bad news, there is always a way to improve the situation and create something good from it. After delivering bad news, I will work with my coworker to find a viable solution."

More Interview Q&As
Explore expert tips and resources to be more confident in your next interview.
Behavioral
Common
Phone
Tough
Leadership
All Interview Topics
All Career Q&As
Suggested Career
Interview Q&As
Continue practicing by visiting these similar question sets
Sales
Marketing
Electrical Technician
Line Worker
29 United Utilities 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. At United Utilities, we give everyone the opportunity to be a mentor. Have you had the opportunity to teach an important skill to a co-worker?
  2. Tell me about your experiences giving presentations in front of large groups.
  3. Work volumes can become very high at United Utilities. How do you handle a larger than average workload?
  4. How do you handle a situation where your supervisor does not properly communicate information to you?
  5. How can United Utilities motivate you, as a leader?
  6. United Utilities encourages continued education. Tell me about a time when you took on a new course to study in order to improve your own work performance.
  7. What do you know about the culture at United Utilities?
  8. If you were given a choice, which work related task would you leave for last? Why?
  9. Tell me about a time when you improved communication between yourself and a co-worker or client.
  10. We value communication at United Utilities. Rate your communication skills from 1-10 with proper examples backing your given rating.
  11. Tell me about a time when your communication skills greatly benefited your team.
  12. When entering a new job, describe how you build relationships with your new coworkers and supervisors.
  13. What experience do you have using team-based messaging applications?
  14. How would you describe your written communication skills?
  15. How do you handle communicating bad news to a fellow worker or subordinate?
  16. Would you say you are a better verbal or written communicator?
  17. Tell me about an error or mistake you made because of a breakdown in communication from you or one of your team members.
  18. At your current or former place of employment, how important was communication and dealing with others?
  19. At United Utilities, we value calculated risk. When have you taken an unusual risk in the workplace? What was the outcome?
  20. Tell me about a time when you undertook a project that demanded a lot of initiative.
  21. If United Utilities hired you today, what would you accomplish first?
  22. Do you prefer doing work on a routine day-to-day basis or do you prefer mixing up your routine occasionally?
  23. We appreciate innovative thinking at United Utilities. When have you created a new product or service?
  24. How often do you discuss work with your colleagues, in order to think up new systems and styles of working?
  25. Give me an example of a time when you had to troubleshoot to solve a problem?
  26. When a major problem arises, what is your first reaction?
  27. When have you shown a willingness to learn a new method or new approach to solving a problem?
  28. When planning, how often do you create alternative scenarios to help you adjust to changing situations?
  29. What excites you?
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