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Problem Solving 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.

Problem Solving was updated on April 6th, 2018. Learn more here.

Question 1 of 25

In your opinion, what makes you a great problem solver?

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Problem Solving Interview Questions & Answers

  1. 1.

    In your opinion, what makes you a great problem solver?

      How to Answer

      Employers want to know that you have a methodical approach to problem-solving. Consider the skills and qualities that help you successfully face problems. Perhaps you have a keen eye for detail. Maybe you can see opportunity when others can only focus on the issue. Share your strengths as a problem solver, and your ability to come up with innovative solutions.

      Strong problem solvers are:

      - Systematic thinkers
      - Open minded
      - Okay with being wrong sometimes
      - Always researching and exploring
      - Able to identify the core problem
      - Able to reverse engineer a challenge to avoid future issues
      - Able to come up with multiple avenues that work well for all stakeholders
      - Are do-ers and not worriers

      Rachelle's Answer

      "I am a great problem solver because I can compartmentalize all aspects of a problem before studying it. I also like to bring more experienced team members in to add to the solution. I will never try to be a hero and solve a complicated problem without tapping into the resources around me."

      Rachelle's Answer for an Admin Interview

      "What makes me a great problem solver is that I have a keen ability to research, read, and explore so that my recommendations are based on fact and study rather than guesses."

      Rachelle's Answer for a Manager Interview

      "I have been told that I am an excellent problem solver and I believe this is because I have a bit of an engineering mind. I can take the issue, work backward to solve it, and then use that resolution as a basis for avoiding future issues to come up. I am also a big-picture thinker which allows me to come up with various resolutions per problem."

      Rachelle's Answer for a Marketing Interview

      "I am a great problem solver because I do not allow stress to cloud my judgment and mute my creativity. I am a keen observer with a great memory which allows me to recall unique solutions or ideas."

      Rachelle's Answer for a Retail Interview

      "I am a great problem solver because I draw from the experience of others, whether solicited advice or through my prior observations and then I improve upon that, where possible. My memory and years in the industry have exposed me to many types of situations and problems, so I feel I have a vast amount of experience to draw from, allowing me to be creative and effective in the way I approach any challenge. Not to mention, I'm not afraid to ask for help or advice along the way. I know that I don't know everything, so I like to ask for input when I feel I am not fully equipped to do the job alone. There is no shame in that."

      Rachelle's Answer for a Sales Interview

      "I believe I am a great problem solver because I am sure to gather as many facts as possible, I look at the problem and its potential solutions from multiple angles, and I am not afraid to make a creative decision, that might seem off the beaten path."

      Rachelle's Answer for a Teacher Interview

      "I consider myself a great problem solver and believe my skills are in my emotional intelligence. I can be really in tune with the tone of the group, who is feeling what, and how they are each best reached. This skill applies to both adults and children, so it is beneficial both inside of the classroom and out! By being aware of what is at the heart of the matter and how each person needs his or her needs met, I'm able to accomplish a lot while avoiding many common landmines."

      Rachelle's Answer for an Accounts Receivable Specialist Interview

      "I am a great problem solver because I can compartmentalize all aspects of a problem before studying it. I also like to bring more experienced team members in to add to the solution. I will never try to be a hero and solve a complicated problem without tapping into the resources around me."

      Sue's Answer for a Chemist Interview

      "Throughout my education, I have always been drawn to the experimentation aspect of chemistry. I love the hands-on problem-solving approach, and I enjoy using new and varying materials to develop innovative solutions. When I'm faced with a problem, I typically start by doing research or looking at examples of how this problem has been solved by others. From that research, I'm able to decide which approach will work best for me and the organization. Then, I decide what actions need to be taken to solve the problem, and I start putting the process into motion while communicating with my managers and co-workers."

      Heather's Answer for a Clinical Laboratory Technician Interview

      "Yes, I do feel like I am capable of being a good team player. I enjoy working with others and want to always do my part to make the teamwork work."

      1 Community Answer

      Anonymous Answer

      "My analytical skills from the reconciliations point of view, once that I am familiar with an account, I am able to spot any differences and say which is the reason for that difference. And I am able to give the instructions to solve the problem."

      Cindy's Answer

      Great that you are applying your real-world, industry-specific experience as you answer this question. You can make it even better by giving a concrete example.

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