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Competency Interview Questions

25 Questions and Answers by

Rachelle Enns is an interview coach and job search expert. She works with candidates to perform their best in employment, medical, and post-secondary admission interviews.

Competency was updated on May 4th, 2019. Learn more here.

Question 1 of 25

How do you handle a larger than average workload?

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Competency Interview Questions & Answers

  1. 1.

    How do you handle a larger than average workload?

      How to Answer

      The interviewer wants to know that you can handle the workload required of you in this position and that you will not become overwhelmed if/when workloads unexpectedly increase. When workloads increase, stress levels do too. How do you react?

      Here are some suggestions on how to handle a large workload:

      - List your tasks and prioritize them
      - Think of which jobs add to the company's bottom line, and start there (Closest to the money!)
      - Exhale. Relax for a minute and collect yourself
      - Organize your tasks by which ones you can complete independently and which ones you need help with
      - Take sufficient breaks, so you do not exhaust yourself
      - Communicate your struggles with your leadership or team

      Rachelle's Answer

      "When I have a large workload on my plate, I do not stress over the tasks that are in front of me. Rather, I make a simple plan of which tasks are a high priority and which tasks are a lower priority. The higher priority tasks, I complete first. Through this system, I can focus on my tasks individually, rather than stress out by the multitude of tasks ahead of me."

      Rachelle's Answer for an Admin Interview

      "When I have a large workload on my plate, I do not stress over the tasks that are in front of me. Rather, I make a simple plan of which tasks are a high priority and which tasks are a low priority. The higher priority tasks, I complete first. Through this system, I can focus on my tasks individually, rather than stress out by the multitude of tasks ahead of me."

      Rachelle's Answer for a Manager Interview

      "I first take a step back and make a list of all the deliverable work that I have. Then, I prioritize the list by deadline and ease of completion. I always try to hit the easy tasks first and get them off my to-do list. Feeling like I am making progress keeps me motivated."

      Rachelle's Answer for a Marketing Interview

      "I always make lists and have a pretty good handle on what I have on my plate, but when the list starts to get long, I just make sure to work more hours if needed, or get strategic about double dipping the projects to be most effective. I try to balance my work and a home life well so that if the situation arises in which I need to spend more time at work, I feel I'm balanced and prepared to tackle the stressful, long hours."

      Rachelle's Answer for a Retail Interview

      "With enthusiasm! Having a large workload is part of being in retail. I prioritize the work and enlist additional resources where necessary."

      Rachelle's Answer for a Sales Interview

      "I learned in both college, but especially in my account management role, that I do best with a larger than usual workload. I do a better job time managing and just crank out the work. Obviously, I need a balance to this overload, so I don't burn out, but I enjoy the challenge of extra work in the same amount of time."

      Rachelle's Answer for a Teacher Interview

      "My workload is packed but consistent. The only time it gets hectic is if we've had a lot of assessments and I've fallen behind in grading. My work schedule leaves no room for error; I have a class starting at the same time the previous one ends. So, I am accustomed to having an incredibly full workload."

      Rachelle's Answer for a Benefits Manager Interview

      "In my current role as a Benefits Specialist, there have been times when my workload has been heavy, so I understand how daunting this can be. However, when I have a large workload on my plate, I do not stress over the tasks in front of me. Instead, I make a simple plan of which tasks are a high priority and which ones are lower. I complete the higher priority tasks first. Through this system, I can focus on my tasks individually rather than stress out by the multitude of tasks ahead of me."

      Rachelle's Answer for a Secretary Interview

      "When I have a large workload on my plate, I do not stress over the tasks that are in front of me. Rather, I make a simple plan of which tasks are a high priority and which tasks are a lower priority. The higher priority tasks, I complete first. Through this system, I can focus on my tasks individually, rather than stress out by the multitude of tasks ahead of me."

      Rachelle's Answer for a Radiation Therapists Interview

      "I make sure that I am clear on expectations and required tasks, asking questions to clarify and prevent misunderstandings. I am thorough with patients, making detailed assessments before treatment and keeping track of time during visits. When I am more calculated with my time, while still ensuring complete thoroughness, I can keep on track during any busy day."

      Rachelle's Answer for a Heavy Equipment Operator Interview

      "When I have a large workload on my plate, I do not stress over the tasks that are in front of me. Rather, I make a simple plan of which tasks are high priority and which tasks are lower priority. The higher priority tasks, I complete first. Through this system, I am able to focus on my tasks individually, rather than stress out by the multitude of tasks ahead of me."

      Rachelle's Answer for a 3D Animator Interview

      "When I have a large workload on my plate, I do not stress over the tasks that are in front of me. Rather, I make a simple plan of which tasks are a high priority and which tasks are a low priority. The higher priority tasks, I complete first. Through this system, I am able to focus on my tasks individually, rather than stress out by the multitude of tasks ahead of me."

      2 Community Answers

      Anonymous Answer

      "I’ve always worked well under pressure. I remain calm. I make a to-do list of everything that needs to be done. I prioritize assignments. I manage my time well. I keep track of each project independently so I can see the progress."

      Rachelle's Answer

      These are all excellent ways to manage a heavy work load. Good answer!

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      Anonymous Answer

      "By staying focused. Before diving into work, I come up with a strategy. I divide the work, assess the workload for each piece, and establish a list of priorities. If I realize that there are any of the items on the list which would be challenging to achieve within the deadline, I might speak with my supervisor and ask for extra help."

      Rachelle's Answer

      Great response! It sounds as though you are very organized, and take the time to think about your approach before jumping in.

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