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Top 15 Communication Interview Questions

Question 1 of 15
How do you show your co-workers the importance of communication in the workplace?
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Question 2 of 15
At your current or former place of employment, how important was communication and dealing with others?
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"In my previous role, healthy communication was required to protect the safety of our employees. We transported dangerous goods, and our management required that we all take specific workshops on communication and documentation. Because of this, my communication skills are powerful."
The interviewer would like to know if you are accustomed to working in a highly communicative environment or if you are more used to a work environment where everyone keeps their thoughts to themselves until mistakes are made. If your most recent role was not a highly communicative environment, discuss positions further in the past. Avoid speaking poorly of the communication in your most recent role. If the situation was not ideal, you could say just that. Show that you fully understand the repercussions of poor communication.
Specific Career Examples
Manager Example
"Excellent communication is key to everything when it comes to dealing with others. Communication style can make or break deals with anyone. I leverage communication skills to enhance relationships with my team wherever possible."
Retail Example
"There is not a strong level of communication in my current workplace. This reality is part of the reason why I am seeking new employment. I highly value clear communication. Do you encourage strong communication between retail locations here?"
Sales Example
"Communication is always important if you want your business to be successful. Lack of communication can decrease morale, upset customers, and cause conflict with vendors. The organization which I currently work offers excellent communication strategies, and I have learned a lot from those."
Teacher Example
"As a teacher, communication is incredibly important. I would never compromise communication between the faculty, student body, or their parents."
Admin Example
"I am an executive assistant to the CEO and CFO of my company. If I do not communicate properly, clients leave, and deals can fall through. Strong communication is vital in my role."
Marketing Example
"We used a lot of communication apps to encourage a strong level of communication between teams. We worked on a lot of big projects where communication was the one factor that could make or break a successful campaign."
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Question 3 of 15
Tell me about an error or mistake you made because of a breakdown in communication from you or one of your team members.
Professional Answers Preview
"I recall one instance where I misread an email from one of my subordinates. The punctuation was incorrect, and I read it in in a dire tone rather than in a positive one, as it was intended. After a tense conversation, the employee clarified her intention, and it seems I was mistaken. She and I agreed to exercise verbal communication on a regular basis to avoid a similar situation from happening again."
The interviewer would like to know about a time when communication was weak on your part, and a mistake occurred. On occasion, mistakes will happen, and communication will break. Think back to a time when you made an error in communication, and it caused a ripple effect that reached your team members or your organization as a whole. The final part of your answer needs to include the steps you took to repair the situation. Make sure to conclude your answer on a positive note.
Specific Career Examples
Sales Example
"We recently had a missing link in communications to one of our vendors, who we signed on to provide a large service. They were not aware of a change in the agreement which cost the company wasted time, resources and money. We were able to identify the breakdown in communication and change the process to ensure it does not happen again."
Manager Example
"I missed a shipment to a customer because there were two similar items in the production schedule. Usually, the scheduler highlights oddities like that, but not this time. I missed the difference and thought it was the same order when it came through on my end."
Retail Example
"We missed one of our inventory shipments last month because I too quickly skimmed a memo from head office regarding the change in schedule due to a long weekend. The shipment was returned which resulted in extra costs to the business and a delay in receiving our seasonal stock. I offered to pay for the extra charges. They refused to charge me for the error but did ask that I take additional care in the future. I was embarrassed and I do all I can now to ensure an oversight like this never happens again."
Teacher Example
"Last year I made an error in communicating with a parent newsletter. I had the wrong date for a school field trip which resulted in all of my students showing up to school, ready and excited for a day at the museum. Oops! The parents were pretty good about it, and we went the following day; however, I had some pretty ticked off little students that day. Nobody is perfect but I certainly triple check my dates now!"
Admin Example
"I am the executive assistant to three different members of our company's c-suite. One day I made the error of emailing the wrong schedule to the others, resulting in a disastrous day. I was able to reschedule their appointments for later in the week, but my error did result in a few unhappy clients."
Marketing Example
"I missed a deadline the other week because I did not fully read the email from my marketing director, stating that the deadline had been moved up. I committed myself to be much more detail-oriented when it came to reading my messages from him. He also agreed to red flag any matters of importance, moving forward."
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Question 4 of 15
Would you say you are a better verbal or written communicator?
Professional Answers Preview
"I prefer verbal communication because I feel that with written communication, wires can be crossed, due to lack of tone, fluctuation, expression and body language. I will always choose a face to face conversation whenever possible."
In business, it's vital that you are strong as both a written and verbal communicator. Your talents may lean one way or another, and that is okay. Discuss with the interviewer in which manner you prefer to communicate and then be sure to discuss how you are improving in the other.
Specific Career Examples
Manager Example
"I like to leverage both methods of communication when dealing with business. Sometimes, situations call for verbal communications and other times, written. As a rule of thumb, I tend to practice verbal communications, with written follow up or vice versa. Utilizing multiple methods creates repetition and therefore, change."
Admin Example
"I do not lean one way or the other when it comes to verbal or written communication. Both are equally important to me. If I have to choose just one, I will choose written communication as one can always look back on written communication for reference."
Marketing Example
"I am comfortable with both so it would depend on the message, I suppose. Big news needs to be communicated verbally and followed up in written form, but quick messages or simple changes can be communicated effectively through email without the hassle of breaking away from work for a call or meeting."
Teacher Example
"I would say that I am a better verbal communicator simply because I spend most of my day communicating in that method. I can certainly communicate well in written form; however, I do have more experience communicating verbally."
Retail Example
"I am a better verbal communicator. I spend the bulk of my day speaking with customers and training my staff on new sales, policies, or products. I can certainly communicate well in written form, also."
Sales Example
"As a salesperson, I am skilled in both written and verbal forms of communication, but I prefer verbal. I am a great conversationalist and close most of my sales in person or over the phone."
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Question 5 of 15
How do you handle communicating bad news to a fellow worker or subordinate?
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"I certainly do not enjoy communicating bad news to a co-worker, but I do have experience in doing so. 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 don't sugar coat the reasons why. It's best they know so that they can learn from the experience."
The interviewer would like to know if you can adequately handle being the bearer of bad news. One of the toughest parts of communication can be delivering bad news to people with whom you work. Whether it is providing a less than favorable 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.
Specific Career Examples
Manager Example
"I have found that communicating with respect and the intent to support the associate is the best approach. It is important to communicate what behaviors are off track and what resources are available to the associate to get back on track."
Sales Example
"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."
Retail Example
"I have found that directly stating facts is best. Trying to "sugar coat" or dance around the subject just makes it worse. Be direct, but respectful."
Teacher Example
"If there is bad news to be communicated to the parent of a student, I run the wording past my Principal first as I always want to ensure that I am meeting our school's guidelines and communication policies."
Marketing Example
"When bad news comes up, I communicate it immediately. The longer an issue festers, the worse it becomes so it's best to rip the proverbial band-aid off asap."
Admin Example
"I am an empathetic person, so I try to communicate bad news quickly but with care. I would never want to cause alarm or feelings of hurt in the office."
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Question 6 of 15
Tell me about your experiences giving presentations in front of large groups.
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Question 7 of 15
How would you describe your written communication skills?
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Question 8 of 15
What experience do you have using team-based messaging applications?
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Question 9 of 15
When entering a new job, describe how you build relationships with your new coworkers and supervisors.
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Question 10 of 15
How do you handle a situation where your supervisor does not properly communicate information to you?
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Question 11 of 15
Tell me about a time when your communication skills greatly benefited your team.
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Question 12 of 15
Rate your communication skills from 1-10 with proper examples backing your given rating.
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Question 13 of 15
Tell me about a time when you improved communication between yourself and a co-worker or client.
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Question 14 of 15
After receiving information from your supervisor, how do you ensure you properly communicate this information to your team?
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Question 15 of 15
Tell me about a time when you had to use your verbal communication skills in order to get a point across that was important to you.
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