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Give me an example of a time when you went above and beyond.

1 of 15 Accomplishment Interview Questions and Answers Written by Rachelle Enns

Updated on January 22nd, 2019 | Rachelle is a job search expert, career coach, and headhunter
who helps everyone from students to fortune executives find success in their career.
How to Answer

The interviewer would like to know about your willingness to go over and above for your employer, without being prompted to do so. Display to the interviewer that you can do more than just the bare minimum. Show that you can react appropriately when you see that your employer has a need that goes beyond your usual day-to-day expectations.

Professional Answer Examples
General
Answer example

"I often go above and beyond expectations. Most recently, I agreed to cover for a co-worker who was on short-term medical leave. I worked 10 hour days for two weeks so that our work did not suffer any setbacks."

Admin
Answer example

"I enjoy going above and beyond in my work. In my last position, I regularly called customers to check in and see how they were doing, even if there was no news or issues with our service to discuss. I believe going above and beyond for customers, and regular touch-base is what kept them loyal to us."

Manager
Answer example

"Last week I noticed that my manager had not completed the schedule for the following week. Some of the staff were complaining that they didn't have their work schedule yet. Rather than going to my manager with the complaint, I offered to take on some of her workloads so that she would have the time to complete the schedule. We worked together for a couple of overtime hours that day and were able to catch her up on everything. It felt good to help."

Marketing
Answer example

"One of my clients had committed to a marketing package that did not include any social media management. It's an expensive commitment, and they were on the fence. I decided to offer them a free social management content calendar, to show them what I could do. My boss was delighted with this decision because just a week later, the client committed to a full six months of service from our marketing group."

Retail
Answer example

"The clothing store which I work has a very crowded sales floor, and some customers with mobility issues could not navigate around the store very well. I had a customer come in, in a wheelchair. Seeing her frustrated with the store layout, I approached her and offered to bring her items that I thought she might like. She had a successful 'personal shopper' experience and thanked me on her way out, for my empathy and assistance."

Sales
Answer example

"During sales calls with a prospect or a touch base with an existing customer, I will often hear them mention a feature that would sweeten the software for them. I created a Google Sheet with these suggestions as well as who made them, why, and in what context. I then shared this document with the product team and the other member of our sales team to help them keep a finger on the pulse of what our customer base is seeking. Now, most everyone updates the spreadsheet with feedback, and it is the primary source from which the product team chooses new features to build out."

Teacher
Answer example

"This year, our French teacher, who was also the girl's soccer coach, suffered a heart attack and needed to take medical leave. I jumped in and took over as the soccer coach. The girls worked so hard to qualify for Nationals, and I didn't want to see their dream crushed due to circumstances out of their control. It was a time of commitment and sacrifice for me but worth every minute. We won Nationals!"

Archivist
Answer example

"Last week I noticed that my manager was running behind on an important project for one of our most significant clients. I offered to take on some of her workload so that she would have the time to complete the schedule. We worked together for a couple of overtime hours that day and were able to catch her up on everything. It felt good to help."

Dishwasher
Answer example

"Last week I noticed that my manager had not completed the schedule for the following week. Some of the staff were complaining that they didn't have their work schedule yet. Rather than going to my manager with the complaint, I offered to take on some of her work load so that she would have the time to complete the schedule. We worked together for a couple of overtime hours that day and were able to catch her up on everything. It felt good to help."

Assistant Manager
Answer example

"Last week I noticed that my manager had not completed the schedule for the following week. Some of the staff were complaining that they didn't have their work schedule yet. Rather than going to my manager with the complaint, I offered to take on some of her work load so that she would have the time to complete the schedule. We worked together for a couple of overtime hours that day and were able to catch her up on everything. It felt good to help but also benefited me by way of organization."

Family Physician
Answer example

"I had been treating a patient with hypertension for a few months, but nothing seemed to get his symptoms under control. After requesting the patient keep a journal of his activities, including what he ate, what physical activities he was participating in, and when he took his medications, I was able to determine that the was not being compliant with his prescribed medication regimen and we educated on his plan of care and continued to monitor his progress. With some extra instruction and monitoring, his symptoms improved and his blood pressure became well controlled."

Union Representative
Answer example

"Just last week we had an officer call in sick while another was away on holidays. We were very short staffed and were working on an important project. I offered to stay late and work a double shift so that the work was finished in time. My supervisor was really thankful for my attitude and brought me lunch the following day as a way of saying thank you."

Psychiatric Technicians
Answer example

"We had a patient at our front desk that was deaf and could read lips. Our front desk receptionist was stressed out over the situation and asked me for help. I was in between patients and was able to help out. I took extra time with the patient to address her needs and get her on her way."

School Counselor
Answer example

"There was a time when (share experience). At first, I was nervous to actually do the job but fortunately, I was able to complete it even if it wasn't something I regularly do. I felt very proud of myself and my immediate superior was also very happy with the output that I delivered. Because of that, I was hailed 'Employee of the Month' for that period."

Superintendent
Answer example

"One way that I go over and above my requirements as a Superintendent is by taking extra steps to stay in tune with the needs of my staff and faculty. I meet with the school staff once per month for a formal meeting to discuss any issues that we could fix, and any that we should present to the Board. Our communication levels are high and this has a direct impact on the success of our school."

Medical Manager
Answer example

"I think one of my biggest weaknesses is that I can get sidetracked easily. I recognize that in myself and have made a conscious effort to plan my day as much as possible and to stay on target."

Front Desk
Answer example

"I once encountered a flustered woman in the lobby of the hotel I was working in. She was desperate to find supplies for a small party she was to host later that afternoon. I immediately directed her to our concierge, who was familiar with the area and could direct her to nearby shops. I also coordinated with our banquets team to see if we had anything we could lend her. In the end, the small gathering turned out to be a success and she thanked our team profusely for helping out."

Veterinarian
Answer example

"I would say, 'Be open to changes and unexpected discoveries.' I started college thinking I would become a teacher. It didn't take long for my love of animals to take over and that led me to change my major to veterinary medicine."

Concierge
Answer example

"Last week I noticed that my manager had not completed the schedule for the following week. Some of the staff were complaining that they didn't have their work schedule yet. Rather than going to my manager with the complaint, I offered to take on some of her workloads so that she would have the time to complete the schedule. We worked together for a couple of overtime hours that day and were able to catch her up on everything. It felt good to help."

Bacteriologist
Answer example

"After I finished a difficult task in the lab I decided I would take some time to work with my co-workers to come up with a way to improve the process so it would flow much easier the next time. The project encourages teamwork​ and a lot of productive work. Everyone enjoyed being able to give their suggestions to improve the process."

Biological Scientist
Answer example

"I was assigned a project last month and recognized that the hour's requirements listed were not enough to get the job done properly. To meet my expectations, as well as my employers', I knew I had to work on it at home on the weekends."

Medical Assistant
Answer example

"At different times, I have considered furthering my education and becoming a nurse anesthetist. However, right now, I am content with where I am in my career. I enjoy the hands on care that I am able to give to my patients as a medical assistant. While there may come a time when I decide to go back to school, I don't foresee that in the immediate future."

Civil Engineering Technician
Answer example

"I am particularly proud of the time I (X project you are the most proud of). I went above and beyond because the client's satisfaction mattered to me and my employer, and (X other reasons why you went above and beyond). The client was so satisfied by the high level of commitment and quality of my work that he hired our company for all of his upcoming projects."

ABE Teacher
Answer example

"Last week I noticed that one of my students needed some extra tutoring. He was struggling with a particular module. I offered to help him after class so that he felt more confident going into the next learning module. We worked together for a couple of hours that day and were able to catch him up on everything. It felt good to help."

Flight Attendant
Answer example

"I was raised to believe that you always deliver more that you are asked to do. I am always willing to go the extra mile for the good of my company. Last week I was asked to work a double shift because a co-worker had called in sick. I did so without complaining because that's the type of employee that I am."

Ghostwriter
Answer example

"I never want to make my employer disappointed in my work, and for that reason I will always go above and beyond whatever it takes to get the job done to the best of my ability. In the past I have worked overtime to make sure projects are done flawlessly, and I will always do this to make the company proud."

Veterinarian School
Answer example

"At my last job, I was given a project and the expectations for it, but I knew that the minimum requirements were not going to get the job done properly. I had to work weekends, but I did it how I knew it had to be done. That is how I define 'going above and beyond': doing what needs to be done and not just what is expected of me. "

Correction Officer
Answer example

"Just last week we had an officer call in sick while another was away on holidays. We were very short staffed and were processing a couple of new inmates. I offered to stay late and work a double shift so that we could ensure the safety of everyone in prison. My supervisor was thankful for my attitude and brought me lunch the following day as a way of saying thank you."

News Researcher
Answer example

"I want to prove my worth and better my own skills in this industry, so I know I will be able to go above and beyond. Sometimes researching requires longer hours than normal, and I hope to prove that I will do whatever it takes."

Management Analyst
Answer example

"There was a time when I had to analyse the impact of a new software that we will be implementing to the organisation. But because the IT team lacked manpower at that time, I ended up studying how to use the system and aided them in training the new batch of users to prevent delays in the implementation. It was quite difficult to study everything at such short notice but I was glad that I was able to help my colleagues and also keep the project within timeline."

Building Inspector
Answer example

"I try to go above and beyond a normal inspection by double checking all of my work. Also, the better knowledge I have on building codes, the better I can explain them to the necessary parties. I will work overtime as well to ensure that an inspection is not rushed."

FBI
Answer example

"When I worked in law enforcement in my hometown I was committed to supporting my partner, the people on my team, as well as the people of the community. I got a call that two little kids in a low-income neighborhood had their bikes stolen just days apart from each other. I bought them new bikes and delivered them myself. I did not tell anyone that I did this, as I did not want recognition for the act."

Bookstore
Answer example

"Last week I noticed that my manager had not completed the schedule for the following week. Some of the staff were complaining that they didn't have their work schedule yet. Rather than going to my manager with the complaint, I offered to take on some of her workload so that she would have the time to complete the schedule. We worked together for a couple of overtime hours that day and were able to catch her up on everything. It felt good to help."

Underwriter
Answer example

"This happened when I was working under a senior underwriter and we were working on an important case which could have bought in some real big profit for our organization but my boss got very sick at the last stages when we had to submit our findings and decision. There was no way we could have completed this job without his supervision as I was fairly new and didn't have much experience. It was then that I decided to do my own research and spent the whole weekend in the library and over the internet, going through as many cases as I could and finally I was able to complete that project on my own. That was the first big project of my career that I did on my own and although it was a huge risk that I took, when my senior came back he praised me for my pro-activeness and we also got that client. After all our job is all about taking risks."

Athletic Trainer
Answer example

"I love to go above the call of duty for my patients because I know that they appreciate the extra care that I give them. One of my favorite things to do is give them my work email address so that they can check in with me anytime they have a question on their rehabilitation program."

Written by:

Ryan Brown
Ryan Brown, is the creator of MockQuestions. He has over ten years experience creating interview questions. His website has helped over 10 million job seekers in their interview preparation.
Rachelle Enns
Rachelle Enns is a job search expert, executive headhunter, career catalyst, and interview coach. Utilized by top talent from Fortune companies like Microsoft, General Electric, and Nestle, she helps professionals position themselves in today's competitive digital marketplace. Rachelle founded Renovate My Resume and Executive Resume Solutions, two companies focused on helping job seekers get their edge back. She helps everyone from new graduates looking for their first placement, to CEO's who want more out of their career. Rachelle coaches students to executives on how to master the toughest interview questions and how to handle the most bizarre interview situations; all with confidence and poise. Rachelle trains other career coaches, recruiters, and resume writers, globally. A big part of her job is also spent coaching HR professionals on how to bring the human touch back into their interview and hiring process.
First written on: 01/05/2017
Last modified on: 01/22/2019

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