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Wilbur-Ellis Interview
Questions

28 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     Food     Agriculture    

Question 1 of 28

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

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Interview Questions

1.

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 about. 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 clear, concise, and professional manner.

Rachelle'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."

Rachelle's Answer #2

"Bad news is, unfortunately, just part of the job some days. When I have to deliver bad news, I will deliver it swiftly, but with kindness."

2.

We are always working hard to be innovative. What is your favorite product or service offered at Wilbur-Ellis, and why?

The interviewer is looking for assurance that you are invested in the interview process. Show that you have researched Wilbur-Ellis by offering your thoughts on some of the products/services you find to be unique or innovative. Be sure to show your enthusiasm!

Rachelle's Answer #1

"I was impressed when reading up on how you partner with farmers to understand their assets and teach them how to protect those important assets. It seems like you care deeply about all of your business partners and their needs."

Rachelle's Answer #2

"Your company offers a lot of great products, but I believe that the best thing you offer your customers at Wilbur-Ellis sits in your values. Your organization has a very positive reputation for going over and above what is required, to satisfy your customers."

3.

At Wilbur-Ellis we communicate often with the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). Do you have experience working with this level of Government?

Assure the interviewer that you have strength in communication when it comes to the Government and other essential business bodies. Give an example of a time when you have communicated directly with the U.S. Department of Agriculture. If you have not been responsible for a task like this, then you can discuss your communication style and strengths.

Rachelle's Answer #1

"The majority of questions that I have had in regards to the USDA are answered through their website FAQ section. I have been required to call the USDA hotline on occasion though. My communication skills are professional, so I do not foresee any difficulty related to this level of contact."

Rachelle's Answer #2

"I have extensive experience communicating directly with the USDA, over the span of 17 years. I am very comfortable with this job requirement."

4.

Do you have experience in corrective discipline and terminations?

Terminations and corrective discipline measures can be very difficult to do but, with experience, they do get more comfortable. Talk to the interviewer about the extent of your experience with terminations and discipline.

If you do have the experience: "I have been a part of individual terminations and group lay-offs throughout my career. I am comfortable with these types of tasks."

Rachelle's Answer #1

"I have been a part of individual terminations and group lay-offs throughout my career. I am comfortable with these types of tasks."

Rachelle's Answer #2

"If you do not have the experience: "I have not been in a position to perform terminations or hold corrective discipline meetings; however, I would be willing to perform these types of tasks with a small amount of training and research."

5.

How would you describe your work ethic?

When the interviewer asks about your work ethic, they are looking for specific examples or keywords to which they can relate. When you read the company job, posting or job description do they refer to particular company ethics? Talk about their values and how those align well with your work values.

Some characteristics you may want to use are:

- Determined/Driven
- Accountable
- Humble
- Respectful
- Dependable

Rachelle's Answer #1

"I am a very dedicated and loyal employee. I saw on your website that you describe your company as honest, transparent and you go the extra mile for your clients. My work ethic is the same. I am honest, flexible, and come ready to work hard for my employer every day."

Rachelle's Answer #2

"My work ethic can be described as reliable, honest, and consistent. You are welcome to speak to my references in regards to my work ethic. I am very proud of my reputation as a reliable executive assistant."

6.

In your own words, describe the part that the World Trade Organization (WTO) plays in the agriculture industry.

The interviewer would like to know the extent of your knowledge within the agriculture and trade industry. No matter which position you are interviewing for with Wilbur-Ellis you should always be able to display a real and natural interest in the company's operations. Briefly explain your understanding of the World Trade Organization (WTO).

Rachelle's Answer #1

"From my understanding, the purpose of the World Trade Organization (WTO) is to ensure that everyone fairly benefits from international trade."

Rachelle's Answer #2

"I believe that when it comes to agriculture, the WTO (World Trade Organization) acts as a mediator in trade disputes and assists in trade negotiations."

7.

Do you always double check or proofread your work?

Double checking and proofreading are essential parts of a job well done. Assure the interviewer that you are diligent when it comes to submitting 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 imperative to submit error-free work."

Rachelle's Answer #2

"I try to double check my work as often as possible. Everyone makes mistakes; however, I do my best to submit error-free work."

8.

At Wilbur-Ellis we place great pride in our health and safety standards. Walk me through your health and safety related education or training.

When working in the agriculture industry, you will need to learn how to safely work around products such as grains, meats, chemicals, produce, and more. Briefly walk the interviewer through your related health and safety training. If you do not have any appropriate training, it is best that you ask the interviewer for a recommendation on where you can go to become qualified.

Rachelle's Answer #1

"I primarily have on-the-job training from my last two places of employment. I do not have any specific certifications or licenses. Is there a particular course you would like me to take before starting with Wilbur-Ellis? I would like to note that I have a perfect safety record from all of the positions listed on my resume."

Rachelle's Answer #2

"I am certified in A, B, and C. Also, I recently completed a course on X. I do have extensive safety training, and a full list of my coursework and certifications is listed on my resume."

9.

Tell me about your greatest work related accomplishment.

Talking about your most significant accomplishment will give the interviewer a firm 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 accomplishment showed me that I could 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

"My greatest work-related accomplishment is the fact that I have received three promotions, with my current company, in only 16 months. I have worked hard to build my career and look forward to continuing the progression, with Wilbur-Ellis."

10.

At Wilbur-Ellis we have restrictions surrounding the export of particular products. On a scale of 1-10 how familiar are you with agriculture export regulations?

The interviewer would like to know the extent of your knowledge within exporting. No matter which position you are interviewing for with Wilbur-Ellis you should always be able to display a genuine and natural interest in the company's operations. Briefly discuss your experience with agriculture export regulations.

Rachelle's Answer #1

"In my previous position with Nicaragua Banana Corporation, everyone was expected to understand the rules surrounding banana export. I would rate my knowledge of agriculture export regulations as a 7 out of 10 because there is always more to know and some regulations change with time. I am happy to study these further, should I be the successful candidate for Wilbur-Ellis."

Rachelle's Answer #2

"As I am newer to my career, I would rate my current knowledge around a 5/10. With that said, I am eager to learn and can grasp new concepts easily while maintaining a strong retention record."

11.

In your own words, explain to me the 'Agreement on Agriculture' (AoA).

The interviewer would like to know the extent of your knowledge within the agriculture industry. No matter which position you are interviewing for with Wilbur-Ellis you should always be able to display a real and natural interest in the company's operations. Briefly explain your understanding of the AoA.

Rachelle's Answer #1

"From my understanding, The Agreement on Agriculture is an international treaty created in the mid-1990's. It was considered an answer to improving the economic conditions for farmers at the time."

Rachelle's Answer #2

"To my knowledge, the AoA (Agreement on Agriculture) is an international treaty set forth by the WTO (World Trade Organization)."

12.

At Wilbur-Ellis we seek to hire individuals with a true passion for the agriculture industry. Where do you see this position taking your career in the next few years?

Onboarding new employees is an expensive and time-consuming endeavor for any employer. Assure the interviewer that you see long-term career potential with Wilbur-Ellis. Research the company online to discover any opportunities for future growth. Do they have multiple locations? Is there a variety of departments? Where do you see yourself growing within Wilbur-Ellis? Be enthusiastic when you discuss your long-term career plans!

Rachelle's Answer #1

"I am looking for a long-term career opportunity within the agriculture industry. I feel that this role with Wilbur-Ellis is a perfect step in my career now, and for the future. I see that you have operations in Canada and Mexico. My dream would be to relocate to Mexico and be a production manager with Wilbur-Ellis there."

Rachelle's Answer #2

"In my current position, I have had my sights set on the senior leadership position in my department. If I were to join Wilbur-Ellis, my goal would be the same. I plan to take a few leadership workshops in the coming months to help get me there."

13.

At Wilbur-Ellis we have many competitors. In your opinion, what makes us stand out in this competitive space?

It is essential that you research Wilbur-Ellis before your interview and also that you include research on their competitors. In your opinion, where does Wilbur-Ellis stand out from the rest? Be sure to check out their website and look for any recent press releases, product launches, or industry related accolades. These are all great points to discuss when asked a question such as this.

Rachelle's Answer #1

"This industry is competitive; however, I feel that Wilbur-Ellis does an excellent job with standing out from the crowd. I see that you are the recipient of a Top 100 Employers award and that last year you were recognized for having the second most sustainable product in your industry. Congratulations on those big successes!"

Rachelle's Answer #2

"After researching Wilbur-Ellis I think that the verbiage you use on your website and your social media content has the most positive and client-centered message. That was a real stand out to me."

14.

Do you have any agriculture related post-secondary education? How do you feel your education will help you in this position with Wilbur-Ellis?

Walk the interviewer through your post-secondary education. Be sure to highlight any related coursework that you feel will help you be successful in this role with Wilbur-Ellis. You can take keywords from the company job description or job posting.

Rachelle's Answer #1

"I graduated in 2009 with my Bachelor of Science Degree (BSc Agriculture) from UC Davis. My primary focus was on environmental science and biology. This degree will help me immensely in my future career with Wilbur-Ellis because my studies were highly interdisciplinary. I could be a valuable employee in a range of roles and departments."

Rachelle's Answer #2

"My education has been primarily on-the-job training and additional coursework on the science behind agriculture. You will see a full list of my certificates on my resume. In addition to these credentials, I have enrolled in a chemistry workshop this fall."

15.

What is the Doha Development Round?

The interviewer would like to know the extent of your knowledge within the agriculture and trade industry. No matter which position you are interviewing for with Wilbur-Ellis you should always be able to display a genuine and natural interest in the company's operations. Briefly explain your understanding of the Doha Development Round.

Rachelle's Answer #1

"From my understanding, the Doha Development Round is primarily in place to increase global trade by lowering trade barriers. This Agenda has been in place since 2001."

Rachelle's Answer #2

"I am not completely familiar with the Doha Development Round; however, I do believe that it is a trade negotiation meant to encourage the increase of global trade."

More Interview Q&As
Explore expert tips and resources to be more confident in your next interview.
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All Career Q&As
Suggested Career
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