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Answering Behavioral Questions

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Rachelle Enns
Rachelle is a job search expert, career coach, and headhunter who helps everyone from students to fortune 500 executives find success in their career.
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Tell me about a time when you worked on a team based project when a member was not doing their share of the work.
Example #1
"(Situation) Currently, I have a team member who does the bare minimum whenever possible. (Task) As a high achiever, I will not allow this person or their mindset to take away from my success on the job. (Action) I have decided to use it as an opportunity to shine personally. I take the additional workload on myself and deliver expectations to our clients on time. (Result) Over the last four months, I have received multiple kudos from my clients because of my dedication. It is not my responsibility to change this persons' work ethic; however, I can choose my actions. My choice is to work hard and be a dedicated employee, no matter what others are choosing to do."
Example #2
"(Situation) I recently worked with an account payables team member who was suddenly not pulling their weight. (Task) As a general administrator, I knew I should address the issue but also not overstep. (Action) I asked them in private if everything was okay. It turns out; they were going through some challenges at home. I offered to help with their tasks when I could. (Result) When I stepped in, it benefited the rest of the team, and we were able to get our A/P project back on track."
Example #3
"(Situation) I once had a team member who never came to meetings. (Task) As his manager, I knew that I had to have a firm conversation, reminding him of his responsibilities to the team. (Action) I approached the conversation casually, and it turned out that he did not want to be on our particular team. I spoke with the Regional Director, and we agreed to transfer this person to a different team on a 90-day probationary period. (Result) After the 90 days, the Regional Director and I discussed this persons' performance. We saw no improvement and decided to terminate his employment. It was an unfortunate situation, but better to have this happen than have to continue employing someone who didn't want to be there."
Example #4
"(Situation) Last year, I had a marketing team manager who consistently submitted sloppy work. (Task) As the Marketing Manager, I always teach my team that effective marketing is all about teamwork and cooperation. (Action) To further iterate this point, I pulled this person aside in a private meeting. I explained that when one team member is not pulling their weight, it has a significant impact on a project. I continued to correct the person's work, sending it back with markups. (Result ) With each piece of feedback, this person noticeably improved. By showing fast improvements, they kept their job, and I happily continued to coach them up."
Example #5
"(Situation) In the store where I work, monthly mark-downs are a team effort. There is one employee who pretends to be busy on other tasks during this time. (Task) As the team lead, I know that we need all hands on deck while still attending to the needs of our customers. (Action) Initially, I tried to lead by example, but this person needed heavier coaching. Next, I pulled them aside to outline my expectations of them. I also attached consequences should they fail to perform. (Result) Now, this person is more willing to jump in and help the team. My other team members are thankful that they no longer need to compensate for her lack of contribution."
Example #6
"(Situation) In my current role, one of my teammates is always looking for the easy way out. (Task) As a competitive person, this bothers me because I want our team to be in the lead for all categories. (Action) First, I addressed the situation with him directly and in private. Still, he was just going through the motions. That is when I decided that I could only control my actions. I now perform an extra 25% for all tasks such as cold calls, touchpoints, and prospecting activities. (Result) So far, my added output has compensated for his lower metrics. The added benefit to working even harder is that it gives me more market insight allowing me to understand my prospects and target accounts better."
Example #7
"(Situation) Writing a curriculum is the most extensive team collaboration I have experienced as a teacher. I have seen that, occasionally, some members do not pull their weight. (Task) At this point in my 20-year teaching career, I anticipate this. (Action) I do all I can to get everyone excited about pitching in and collaborating for the benefit of their department. If my approach doesn't work, I proceed as usual and pick up the slack if necessary. (Result) My team appreciates that I will never let them down."
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Our interview questions are created by writers, most of whom have a long history of recruiting and interviewing candidates. They do not necessarily have experience interviewing or working with the companies, careers or schools they may write for on We strive to match our experts' background and expertise with the appropriate question sets found on our website.