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Top 15 Adaptability Interview Questions

Question 1 of 15
When you suffer a setback, how does that emotionally affect you and your work?
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Question 2 of 15
When have you had to adapt to change in the workplace?
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How to Answer
The interviewer would like to know about a time you were required to adapt to change in the workplace. Being able to adapt to change in the workplace is an essential skill to possess because change is inevitable. Talk to the interviewer about a time when you have had to adjust to changes on the job. How did you handle the transition? Was it a positive reaction?

Answer Example
"In my current role there is a lot of staff turnover when it comes to our management team. I have had to adapt to 3 new managers in the past four years. It is not the ideal situation, but I can adjust for the good of the team."
Admin Example
"Last year our company was sold to a competitor, and a lot of our management team changed hands. It was a lot of change to handle in a short time, especially being unsure of who to report to ahead of others. I am resilient, though, and have made the big changes work by keeping my head down and delivering great work, no matter who it goes to in the end."
Manager Example
"In my current management position, we were pushed to obtain ISO certification by one of our potential customers. The changes in reporting and procedural compliance were numerous, and it took a little while to adjust. The training component of my staff was not easy either. However, in the end, it was worth it to secure such a high profile customer."
Marketing Example
"Marketing is all about change! Our clients change every day, and the scope of our projects change on a dime. I am resilient to change and look forward to working in an ever-changing marketing environment, with your agency."
Retail Example
"I used to work for a retail chain that specialized in leather footwear. Corporate started to introduce vegan footwear options which were a tough sell after becoming so well known for their leather. I adapted to the change by learning more about vegan options, and asking further discovery questions to new customers."
Sales Example
"In my previous role at a high-growth tech startup, the sales organization was restructured, from a new boss to new teams and territories. Some of the accounts I had been nurturing but had not yet converted to a buyer yet were now handed off to another sales rep who received the fruits of my labor. Of course, this fact was very frustrating. However, by sitting down with management to understand the "why" of the change, and how I could best set my new accounts up for success while transitioning my previous ones over to a new rep, I was able to see the bigger objective and ultimately increase my sales performance."
Teacher Example
"Our school recently underwent a major renovation which resulted in half of our classrooms being unavailable. My classes ended up being in a portable, behind the school. It was a big change for me because I had to be extra prepared with my supplies and needs for the day. Thankfully the renovation lasted only six months."
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Question 3 of 15
When planning, how often do you create alternative scenarios to help you adjust to changing situations?
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How to Answer
Being able to problem solve and think outside the box when it comes to changing situations is a valuable skill set. Talk to the interviewer about your ability to create a variety of potential scenarios. You may never need to take on these scenarios; however, it's great for the interviewer to know that you can adapt your plan on the fly.

Answer Example
"I feel that it is essential to create alternative scenarios in all situations. One cannot guess what will happen in the end, so it is great to prepare for all possible outcomes."
Admin Example
"As an administrative professional, it's essentially my biggest job requirement to be ready to adapt at all times. I always have a Plan B and C ready to go. This level of preparedness is part of what makes me so valuable in my current role."
Manager Example
"Alternate scenarios are great to have, but I prefer to stay focused on my desired outcome. So long as my team is on board with the goals we have yet to achieve, I am confident that we will always reach Plan A."
Marketing Example
"I love having contingency plans. It's important for a marketing team to understand that ideally, we are going to do 'X,' but if that fails, we need to be ready to hop on and make sure that 'Y' happens. It takes out the uncertainty, and is sure to prepare everyone to adapt if a problem should arise."
Retail Example
"Any customer facing role can be unpredictable and requires a great amount of adaptability. Recently we had a huge recall of a popular gaming product. We had customers lining up outside in the morning to make returns. I quickly made a plan for the returns, along with a potential upsell, so that we could still benefit from the error."
Sales Example
"Nothing is a guarantee in sales, that is one thing I know for sure. I always create 'what-ifs' because I know that plans change quickly, especially where there are multiple decision makers between myself and closing the deal. Plan B is always ready to go."
Teacher Example
"As a teacher, if you do not have alternate scenarios planned, you will quickly be railroaded! Students are unpredictable, so it's best to have a backup plan for anything. One example is when it's field trip day, it's pouring, and your activity is to take place outdoors. These types of scenarios happen all the time, and a great teacher will always be ready."
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Question 4 of 15
Do you prefer doing work on a routine day-to-day basis or do you prefer mixing up your routine?
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How to Answer
The interviewer would like to know your preference when it comes to a predictable versus an unpredictable work routine. Discuss with the interviewer if you are the individual who prefers to know what the method will be for the day, or if you thrive on the challenge and excitement of unpredictability. It's best to display a balance between the two, using the most current position in your answer.

Answer Example
"I prefer working in a more predictable environment because I can be more effective in my tasks. With that said, I can certainly work in an unpredictable environment from time to time. My current role is primarily predictable with a few surprises coming from head office a couple of times per week. These can include scheduling changes, new policies, or additional clients."
Admin Example
"I am comfortable either way, but I would probably grow bored if nothing ever changed. Having a few days of status quo now and then is good for my sanity though."
Manager Example
"I manage a team of twenty unique individuals which means that every day brings me a new challenge. I am a fantastic problem solver and would likely grow bored if days were mundane. Of course, some days without fires to put out, are welcome!"
Marketing Example
"As a marketer, with primarily agency experience, I am accustomed to working in an unpredictable environment. I tend to prefer that pace because it's exciting and challenging. It makes every day different and fun. That's not to say that some time spent in predictability isn't welcome, though!"
Retail Example
"If my schedule changes, I can certainly adapt; however, I much prefer working on a set schedule. The customer type will change, but I do like to have my expectations laid out for me."
Sales Example
"I like to have a bit of both. I have a general schedule that I follow in the morning including a team huddle, setting objectives for the day, following up with clients, and then setting new meetings with prospects. That said, the in-between of that framework is always pretty unpredictable. In sales, you never know what might happen. More often than not, there is some hassle throughout the day so that variety keeps me on my toes, engaged, and excited."
Teacher Example
"No day is the same when you are in the education industry. I wouldn't have it any other way! I prefer to switch up the day, offer my students time to move around, have fun, and learn through exploration."
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Question 5 of 15
How do you react to an increase in your workload?
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How to Answer
Workloads will increase and decrease as the market demands. The interviewer would like to know how you adapt when the work starts to pile up. Show that you are willing to work faster, put in overtime, or take work home when needed. You will also want to express your time-management abilities.

Answer Example
"I fully understand that my workload will increase from time to time and I easily accept that. Personally, I prefer it when times are busy, so I do not mind an increase in workload now and then."
Admin Example
"In my current position, my workload changes depending on the team and their needs. I can adapt to those needs quickly and effectively. Just last week I had two team members who were sick, and my workload increased significantly. I worked overtime and met my deadlines."
Manager Example
"My workload changes by the minute. Many of my clients have shipping emergencies, and I need to adapt to those as they arise. I keep organized with google calendar and my iPad. What would I do without them!"
Marketing Example
"My workload increases as new clients are acquired. It's the ebb and flow of the marketing industry. When my work is piling up, I will ask for assistance from another team member who has a lighter workload. I offer the same assistance to my coworkers when they have a heavy desk as well."
Retail Example
"My work is very seasonal, and when workloads increase, I perform my best. I love having a lot to do as it makes the days go faster and I feel more energized."
Sales Example
"I tend to thrive under pressure, and always have, which is why I started a career in sales. I want to be the top salesperson which often means doing more than my "fair share." I love being busy, so I thrive on those opportunities for more work and additional chances to prove my value."
Teacher Example
"Workloads fluctuate, depending on the month, holidays, special testing, and more. I adapt very well and have a great schedule that I follow to ensure that my students never have an overwhelming amount of homework."
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Question 6 of 15
When have you had to shift your priorities in response to sudden changes?
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Question 7 of 15
When change occurs in the workplace, do you naturally adjust or do you first think of the worst?
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Question 8 of 15
Tell me about a time when you made a suggestion requesting change in an organization.
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Question 9 of 15
When have you shown a willingness to learn a new method?
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Question 10 of 15
When have you faced an unexpected difficulty?
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Question 11 of 15
When have you had to think quickly in response to sudden change?
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Question 12 of 15
When have you been asked to perform a function or complete a task in which you had little or no experience in doing?
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Question 13 of 15
What was the biggest change you have had to deal with in your career?
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Question 14 of 15
When have you had to change a major component of your project due to new information being presented?
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Question 15 of 15
If your current company shut down today, what would you do to quickly adapt?
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