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Top 15 Tough Interview Questions

Question 1 of 18
What is your long-range career objective?
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Question 2 of 18
Why should we hire you?
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"You should hire me because I am unlike anyone else you have interviewed before. When I started my current company, I was the youngest salesperson they had ever hired. That didn't stop me from becoming the #1 sales person in the company within six months. I am dedicated to my craft and engaged in this industry to the point where I commit myself to taking at least one business development or leadership related workshop every business quarter. I am a competitive achiever. You won't be disappointed when you hire me."
Interviewers want to hear about that one unique skill that sets you apart from the other candidates applying for this job. Think of your answer as your 'elevator pitch' or your qualifying statement. If you can't think of ways that you are unique, ask a few friends or family members what they feel sets you apart from other people. Their observations may help you understand how you are perceived. Perhaps you already know what sets you apart! This skill could include any industry accolades, exceptional achievements, additional industry related training, a second language, or how involved you are in the community. Don't be afraid to brag about yourself a bit. In an interview, you are your most influential advocate.
Specific Career Examples
Admin Example
"You should hire me because I'm qualified and passionate about your cause. I am excited about the idea of delivering value to your organization and will hustle for the opportunity to go above and beyond for your customers."
Sales Example
"When I read the job description, I smiled because it was as though you wrote it with me in mind. I have three years dedicated to exceeding my sales goals, inside and outside sales experience, and I know the industry. Also, I was the fastest promoted in my previous position and have led the rollout of new markets in my current job, making me ideally positioned to help you continue to build your sales organization, markets, and exceed financial metrics. Not to mention, I am looking for a company that I can stay with for the long haul, something that you said you value earlier as well."
Retail Example
"I have over a dozen years of experience in a related industry at one of your largest competitors. I have a proven track record of successes there and will bring that knowledge with me. I also offer creative solutions on how to position your department against the competition, and ideas that will help elevate your business to the next level. Having been a part of the industry for nearly half of my life, I have seen a ton of change and have adapted to every change or innovation with ease and excitement, and I look forward to doing that at your company as well."
Marketing Example
"I know that my years in sales, freelancing as a marketer, and working on different marketing campaigns have prepared me to be a great asset to your team. I believe that I am the best fit for the role because of my experience, passion for marketing, and more specifically, excitement for your company and product. Having been a customer and fan for years, I know that I will be able to bring more fire and energy to the role than my fellow applicants, and am certain that I am the right fit for your team."
Manager Example
"You mentioned earlier in the interview process that you were struggling with maintaining staff and retaining them. I have an incredible onboarding strategy that took my current company from a 35% turnover rate to just 5% in twelve months. I will turn this pain point around for you."
Teacher Example
"In addition to winning the 'Top Educator of the Year' award in my current district this year, I also bring an elevated level of education compared to most candidates. I have my Masters' Degree in Education and have also taught first-year University classes for future educators. I look forward to bringing this knowledge and influence to your school."
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Question 3 of 18
Tell me something about yourself that I wouldn't know from reading your resume.
Professional Answers Preview
"I am an avid marathon runner and have traveled to 10 countries in the last eight years to compete in a variety of races. I am a competitive individual and enjoy keeping fit."
The interviewer would like to get to know you apart from your resume. You are indeed not obligated to discuss personal matters such as your kids, or relationship status, for instance. Stick with a couple of fun facts to show the interviewer that you are a real person, too. Your answer should be unique so that you are a memorable candidate! Focus on unique non-work related skills or hobbies. For instance, you might share that you enjoy beat-boxing or making origami swans. Be prepared for the interviewer to stop you and ask you to perform your skill on the spot when it's possible! (This will make you unforgettable!)
Specific Career Examples
Retail Example
"I moved here from Ukraine when I was 8, speaking only Russian, and learned English from my Palestinian neighbor who spoke zero Russian. How? I'm still not sure, but we were pals and hung out daily and somehow figured out how to communicate! This experience taught me a lot about the importance of eliminating pre-conceived notions of others based on their background."
Sales Example
"I am bilingual in Spanish and have some proficiency in French and Italian, too. I also am a huge Harry Potter fan and could pretty much quote each book to you! Are you a Harry Potter fan?"
Marketing Example
"I am a certified yoga instructor, and I spent three months after college traveling and doing yoga. I spent six weeks in Asia and another six weeks in Latin America, and it was a fantastic experience that helped me to grow as both a yogi and a professional."
Manager Example
"I currently run a meetup group in our city for ultimate frisbee! I have met many new friends this way and always encourage my team to participate when they can. Healthy competition is great for team building, too."
Admin Example
"I am a complete organization nerd, which you may have already gathered from our interview time together. I have created and designed customer personal planners that are downloads which I sell on Etsy. My shop offers me a great side income, and essentially runs itself!"
Teacher Example
"I have not included the information on my resume; however, I put in volunteer efforts on weekends. It's important that I give back to the community which is why I act as a volunteer coordinator for the women's shelter."
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Question 4 of 18
What would your most recent boss say about you if they were asked to describe your character?
Professional Answers Preview
"If my current employer were asked to describe me I believe they would say that I am determined, collaborative, and broad-minded. Also, during my post-secondary years, I would hear those compliments from time to time, and it was always very encouraging. I was a strong student and am a dedicated employee."
Think of some words that best describe your work ethic and character. If you are new to the workforce, feel free to refer to a professor from your post-secondary experience or even a high school teacher, or coach. Be sure to include descriptive words that will ensure you are a standout candidate. Most people, when asked this question, will say they are 'reliable' and 'easy to get along with.' A well-thought and unique answer to this question will give you a better chance of impressing the interviewer. Here are some unique descriptive words you could use: - Honest - Attentive - Committed - Persistent - Motivated - Tenacious - Respectful
Specific Career Examples
Retail Example
"My professors would describe me as diligent and someone who asks thoughtful questions. I am curious by nature and am always asking questions to understand a topic or situation better."
Sales Example
"I believe my manager would describe me as persistent, goal-oriented, not afraid to push the envelope, and always wanting more. Also, I think he would add that I am always up for the challenge and am fun to be around."
Admin Example
"My boss would say that I am a people-pleaser who is enthusiastic about my job, the people I care for and doing the right thing. She would say that I am a go-getter, that I love what I do, and I approach situations with care and tact."
Marketing Example
"My boss would describe me as creative, committed, and inquisitive. I am always looking to learn something new, try a new approach, and am dependable."
Manager Example
"My character is something that I am very attached to, and I am proud of the reputation that I have developed over the years. When you call my boss for a reference, I believe she will say that I am tenacious, motivated, and let by numbers and data."
Teacher Example
"If asked to describe my character, my current Principal, and faculty would say that I am eager to help, creative with my lesson plans, and respectful of the needs and boundaries of others."
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Question 5 of 18
What qualities do you feel make a manager successful?
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A great manager is someone to who people want to be like. An active manager will have exceptional interpersonal, and relationship building skills. Talk to the interviewer about some of the qualities that you admire, and value, in a leader. If you are applying for a management position, discuss the best management qualities that you hold. It's a great idea to draw some ideas from the company's job description as that document will have many useful keywords you can bring into the conversation. Some great management qualities are: - Accountable - Invested in Culture - Positive Mindset - Perceptive - Approachable - Empathetic - Honest - Patient - Decisive
Specific Career Examples
Admin Example
"Most importantly, I think a successful manager should have great people skills. People are your most valuable asset and your ability to work with, get along with and inspire people to work well with you is critical to your success as a manager."
Sales Example
"I believe the best type of manager leads by example at all times. They are approachable, hardworking, and fair. Also, they don't just talk the talk without walking the walk. It is irksome when a leader says that we need to put in the long hours but leaves earlier than everyone else, for instance."
Retail Example
"In my experience, a manager is only as successful as their investment in their people is strong. A manager must care for their employees, and make sure they are growing to meet expectations. A successful manager will communicate expectations, hold people accountable for achievable goals and be the shining light that gets everyone fired up to do their best at all times. That means not taking favorites, and leading by example at all times."
Marketing Example
"I think the most successful manager is someone who is firm but nurturing. I like a manager who is like a coach, always working to make me better and willing to teach me something, but firm and direct when needed."
Teacher Example
"I believe it's essential that a leader identifies talent and nurtures it. I've seen far too many Principals and District leads choose favorites and let more talented folks go by the wayside, which is a shame for everyone involved. A leader needs to be enthusiastic, knowledgeable, and always ready to roll up his or her sleeves and tackle even the smallest of projects to help out the team."
Manager Example
"I read in your job description for this role that you are looking for a manager who is collaborative and energetic. I agree that these are must-have qualities for a manager to be successful. I certainly identify with these qualities. Some qualities that make me a successful manager are my strong listening and analytical skills, and my decisiveness when it comes to decision making."
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Question 6 of 18
How has your post-secondary education prepared you for this job?
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Question 7 of 18
Have you ever experienced conflict with a boss or professor? How was it resolved?
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Question 8 of 18
Tell me about the worst manager you ever had.
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Question 9 of 18
What questions do you have for me?
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Question 10 of 18
What motivates you?
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Question 11 of 18
What was one question you didn't want me to ask today?
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Question 12 of 18
Do you ever use your sense of humor to diffuse a situation at work?
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Question 13 of 18
What is your biggest regret?
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Question 14 of 18
Do you consider yourself a team player?
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Question 15 of 18
What was your least favorite job? Why?
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Question 16 of 18
Tell me about a time when you had to work with a difficult person. How did you handle it?
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Question 17 of 18
Why do you think you will be successful in this role?
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Question 18 of 18
How do you manage your time, even on the busiest days?
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User-Submitted Interview Answers

Question 1 of 18
What is your long-range career objective?
User-Submitted Answers
1.
To shine in my career with higher level of posting, and to do some what innovative things in my field.
2.
To get the hell out of here!
3.
To get the hell out of here!
4.
To be the ceo of this place.
5.
Grow professionally and contribute to the community.
6.
To gain experience and to excel in any position that I am in.
7.
To be happy and healthy wherever I am.
8.
I would like to be the best economist this great organization has ever had and contribute positively to the growth and development of my country.
9.
My long range objective is to one day start a nonprofit organization helping people in the community that related to the HeathyPeople 2020 Objectives for the Social Determinants of Health, such as occupation, education, job search, access to health care, and provide resources for food, shelter, and financial help.
10.
To be as suscssfull in my work as I am in my personal life.
11.
I could see myself being a Medical Science Liason one day far in the future, or a senior leader in a clinical setting, managing genetic counselors and using my business skills to improve the system and patient care.
12.
To fullfill all the needs of my family members.
13.
To pursue a career that not only is rewarding but is a great company to work for.
14.
To work for as long as I can.
15.
To become a supervisor in the insurance industry, the way I planning on doing is taking management classes, and learn about the way this company prepares there supervisors.
Question 2 of 18
Why should we hire you?
User-Submitted Answers
1.
Why should I hire you?
2.
As someone with a background in architecture, city planning, urban design, and real estate, I have also had the experience to work with a trans-disciplinary firm of biologists, artists, and psychologists. Everything I understood to be justified by the integrity of challenged ways I am passionate about the city of Pittsburgh and improving.
3.
I am an excellent team player so I would be able to work with many kinds of people, I am hardworking, resourceful and autonomous.
4.
Because I would be a great asset to you and your work team.
5.
You should hire me because I am a hardworking young person who is always looking for every opportunity to learn. In saying that, I am still learning and unde.
6.
I believe I am a best candidate for this position because I have educational knowledge alongside experiences and skills that developed through my previous academic course and also my jobs.
7.
I have the necessary qualifications and relevant exprience regarding the job in question.
8.
I believe my knowledge, skills, and abilities are viable asset to the Red Cross organization and my passion and demonstrated work experience is well suited for the position.
9.
You should hire me because ill be the girl that will get the job done, and you will have fun working with me . Also the costumers will love that you hired me.
10.
You should hire me because I am a hardworking and driven individual that will learn what I need to do quickly and then perform that task without any problems. I am keen to develop new skills and will be a future asset to the company.
11.
I think you should hire me because I got the requirements you needed :) beauty and brain.
12.
I am experienced in metal casting and additive manufacturing.
13.
You should hire me because I am a friendly, dedicated worker and I stay focused on my work.
14.
I'm ready to put my heart and soul into Laura Ashley, as I do with every job or business I have had, I am confident and I am not shy to help customer make decisions to choose there products.
15.
When making one big building we need billers ... This is for me a great chance to make gd building with lot of hopes and dreams.
Question 3 of 18
Tell me something about yourself that I wouldn't know from reading your resume.
User-Submitted Answers
1.
I from standard chartered bank. I have been there for the last six years working as a teller. I have mastered the bank systems, processes and procedures . I work whole heartedly and devotedly. I have a bachelors degree in social sciences economics an a number of certificates.
2.
I am currently a grad student at Texas A&M University with a major in Nonprofit Management and Fiscal Performance. I possess a Bachelors of Science and Masters of Public Health Degree from Argosy University. I enjoy research, cooking, volunteering in the community when time permits. Currently, I am a Red Cross Volunteer and developing a partnership for my fraternity, Kappa Lambda Chi Military Fraternity Inc.
3.
Hello, my name is Julie I am a girl who loves talking, maybe too much. I Love intracting with new people everyday. I enjoy making everyone feel welcomed, and I'm a girl who loves to have fun .
4.
I'm currently a junior at Manchester High School. I participate in marching band as well as concert band. I play the flute and I'm currently in Precalc and Chemistry.
5.
I am tenacious, focused and collaborative.
6.
I am a single mother of 2, trying to make a good life for me and my kids.
7.
I'm just an ordernairy lady with an extraordinary people skill, I'm pretty good and reading people and helping them stay calm.
8.
I'm from England lived in Australia gor 27 years. I love fashion, getting together with family and friends and riding my horses.
9.
I come from a background of customer service jobs. I enjoy helping people and have worked to learn how to discern and meet needs.
10.
I'm honest, hardworking, patient, reliable, creative, friendly...
11.
What is your education or any cerificated.
12.
I am outgoing. A hard worker and reliable. I like to learn new things and advance myself as far as I can. I can work with people or alone. I volunteer with the rescue squad, ride horses, hunt and fish in my spare time. I graduate this spring from high school and plan to attend BRCC in the fall part time while I finish my EMT class.
13.
I feel like I am a very focused person and have always been a go getter. Growing up I was on a competitive gymnastics team for 15 years, and I'm not sure if you know any competivie gymnasts or anything abut competitive gymnastics but it is a lifestyle, not just a sport. From the time I was 6years old I was under a very rigorous training schedule with very strict coaches. My day went school.
14.
Calm collected, creative.
15.
I am a mom, wife and individual who has worked her entire life, and who has always interested in helping others, whether through my professional experience helping entrepreneurs build their companies, or as a volunteer helping families build or rebuild their homes with Habitat for Humanity or after Katrina, or as a mom helping my kids deal with difficult situations as they have grown up, or supporting my husband as he built his own career. I am a life long learner which is why I decided to go back to school for genetic counseling after having a successful career, so I consider myself a motivated and curious person. I find genetics fascinating, and decided that I wanted to combine that interest with my other personality characteristics into a new career in genetic counseling.
Question 4 of 18
What would your most recent boss say about you if they were asked to describe your character?
User-Submitted Answers
1.
That I am not a subject matter in any of the courses that they teach.
2.
That I am not a subject matter in any of the courses that they teach.
3.
That I am not a subject matter in any of the courses that they teach.
4.
Hardworking, calm, intelligent, can do whatever task is necessary.
5.
He would say that I am focussed, dedicated and hard working individual.
6.
Intelligent, thorough, precise, creative, talented, and ambitious.
7.
Very attentive, detail oriented but some time a little too detail oriented but conceptually thorough.
8.
Infectiously bubble personally, focus, always happy to participate.
9.
I am smart, hardworking, and personable.
10.
They are the perfect ones who can exactly judge me who iam.
11.
Friendly, self-motivated, prompt, eager to learn and hard working.
12.
She is was good character and talanted.
13.
I'm very on task and hard working.
14.
Calm, pleasant to work with, goes out of her way to complete a task, inquisitive, team player, fast learner.
15.
Most likely, quiet, attentive, inquisitive and intelligent.
Question 5 of 18
What qualities do you feel make a manager successful?
User-Submitted Answers
1.
If he is my boss, he does not have to show me any redeeming quality. I do.
2.
If he is my boss, he does not have to show me any redeeming quality. I do.
3.
A successful manager is available to answer questions as needed and provides training when necessary. They establish roles and responsibilities, and it is up to the subordinate to ensure those assignments are completed on deadline but never letting quality go by the wayside.
4.
A successful manager should be able to listen well, answer questions and provide training when necessary.
5.
Good listener. Happy to step up to the front line when needed, firm but fair, positive attitude, tuned in to people around them.
6.
Successful managers should Lead by example.
7.
Kindness, discernment, people skills.
8.
A sign of a successful manager is one that promotes a positive, safe, professional environment that is eager to contribute to your success.
9.
Understanding, objective, a strong ability to problem solve, experience.
10.
One that is fair with his workers.
11.
A successful manager should listen to employee's ideas and complaints; willing to learn new things and admits his or her mistakes.
12.
The ability to inspire, honesty, and passion for his work.
13.
Fairness and good comunication.
14.
Listening skills, responsive, understanding, solution-oriented, role model.
15.
-the ability to listen to others; admits his/her mistakes; encourage his/her team; care for the team; work with the team not demand the team.
Question 6 of 18
How has your post-secondary education prepared you for this job?
User-Submitted Answers
1.
It has prepared me to wait like a dog for approval by an authority figure.
2.
It has prepared me to wait like a dog for approval by an authority figure.
3.
It has prepared me to wait like a dog for approval by an authority figure.
4.
Incredible points. Great arguments. Keep up the great spirit.
5.
My education has prepared me for my career because all the courses I have taken and my currently taking involve group work which require working with other people to get a job done.
6.
It prepared me by helping me to stay focus and pay attention to detail in everything. Plus provides me the basic framework of necessary skills I need.
7.
I majored in economics and learnt macro economic analysis, computer applications, research methods and data analysis all of which you essential for some to perfect in this role.
8.
My education has given me the research capabilities necessary to investigate, inspect, write reports, and orally present data in a comprehensive, yet in an informative manner.
9.
I never had a path to follow at the point of my education, however I have worked, all my life, and to be honest being hands on are better than reading about it.
10.
I was travelled with some kind of.
11.
I had a strong desire to go into this field after a successful business career. So I was very ready for this educational experience and took full advantage of opportunities and clinical experiences.
12.
My education has prepared me for a career in ways like I have been around many different kinds and personalities for the majority of my life so I am le to deal with different kinds of people. Also classes like English, math and global studies and US studies have taught me a copious amount of information that I need to know and understand to function correctly in todays society.
13.
Its has giving me an egde to work and adapt to any organisation and also made sure I can effect a change to them.
14.
My education has prepared me a lot for my career. I might be in a different field than what I studied but all the analytical skills and the problem solving skills are acquired from University I use them in my everyday role. I tend to believe that education doesn't teach you how to do your job when you get one but it teaches you how to learn which you will be doing a lot when you get a job.
15.
I've been around many different types of people, and learned how to deal with all of their different types of personalities.
Question 7 of 18
Have you ever experienced conflict with a boss or professor? How was it resolved?
User-Submitted Answers
1.
Yes there was a huge conflict between me and my teacher, once she stoped me in the middle of the school play ground and asked me to pull my skirt up beacause it was so chabby and I thought that it was a style... Hmm I understood her later when a grew up ...
2.
Once my teacher gave me a mark that I didnt feel was right so we went over my report and she gave me a higher mark.
3.
Yes I have. I told them how I felt in a firm yet respectable manner, and asked how can we find common ground.
4.
Yes . My boss rita, was a result oriented person. I was still learning the telling job and I used to make mistakes. She would come and ask me to rectify errors immediately and at first I didnt like it but as time went on, I learnt process and my error reduced and my boss became my friend.
5.
I have had a professor to refuse to grade my paper due to turning it in 15 mins late, but I was able to resolve the issue by simply communicating my reason for being late and ensuring that it would not happen it again.
6.
I don't think I have had a issue with any boss or professor, I am a nice girl. But If I ever do have a conflict I would talk to the person in charge to resolve the issue.
7.
To be honest, I've never had a conflict with any of my bosses.
8.
Yeah once I was handled in my previous company .... There were started one prob with se niour developer and testing team.. And I just clarified with all, y its happened.
9.
Early in my career, I got a job performance review with some comments that I disagreed with. I actively listened to my boss as she went over the review with me, and asked her for some time to consider her input before setting up a follow up meeting. It was resolved by taking that time to digest her perspective and my own, and then calmly talk about how my thoughts, and ask her how I could improve in the future. I ultimately realized that she was interested in my being successful, rather than being critical. In other words it was constructive criticism which I came to appreciate.
10.
No. Being that I have only recently turned 16 years old, I have never worked a real job before. This will be my first real job.
11.
I don't know that I have an example of a conflict that I have had. But I know that if one were to arise, the key to solving it is communication. If two people can talk through a situation, and come to an agreement, that will create the best possible outcome.
12.
I've had a conflict with a professor, and we talked it out .
13.
Yes, But since he the professor and as a student I should sorry and obey what should be done.
14.
Never a conflict we have had differing ideas on how to do something.
15.
Thankfully until the day of today I haven't encounter any conflict with any of my previous employers or professor. I always try to stay in track, do my work, finish my task before deadlines and always going above and beyond in everything I do.
Question 8 of 18
Tell me about the worst manager you ever had.
Question 9 of 18
What questions do you have for me?
Question 10 of 18
What motivates you?
Question 11 of 18
What was one question you didn't want me to ask today?
User-Submitted Answers
1.
I do not watch TV shows. I watch only the ads. Even if I zap, there are only more ads.
2.
I do not watch TV shows. I watch only the ads. Even if I zap, there are only more ads.
3.
House of Cards, America Unearthed, Cake Wars.
4.
Akabbinkano, faceoff, and news.
5.
I don't have any right now.
6.
Friends, Frazer, undercover boss.
7.
VEEP, Downtown Abbey, and 60 minutes.
8.
1.) Love and Hip Hop New York 2.) Untold Stories of The ER 3.) Man Vs. Child Chef Showdown.
9.
House, Big Bang Theory, Prison Break.
10.
News Channels, Wheel of Fortune, The Voice.
11.
I did not watch tv only FM shows.
12.
Downtown Abby, family feud, wheel of fortune.
13.
Law in order, Chicago PD, Chicago fire.
14.
I watch a lot of anime online, besides that I watch the Big Bang Theory.
15.
Jersey shore, trailer park boys, and jersey shore.
Question 12 of 18
Do you ever use your sense of humor to diffuse a situation at work?
Question 13 of 18
What is your biggest regret?
Question 14 of 18
Do you consider yourself a team player?
User-Submitted Answers
1.
As long as I am the only one in the team, yes!
2.
Yes. By working as a liasion between editorial, creative services, IT and marketing, ensuring communication between departments is essential to uphold the reputation of the organization.
3.
Yes . I work with a partner in branch atms and also manage the line to the counter with colleagues. Some times we decide on things like let one of us handle bulk cusomers and lest handle others for the line to move.
4.
Yes, you need everyone on the same page to keep the wheels in motion, stronger together.
5.
I am. I worked successfully on a small team of 6-7 people managing a $100 million portfolio. We were working in a fast paced, often stressful environment building small technology companies and needed to be able to listen to each other, come to consensus on many issues, trust each other individually and collectively, plan for our future and make ethical decisions. Not always easy, but a lot of fun. I enjoyed my job tremendously as well as the people worked most closely with.
6.
I am a team player. I feel that I work well in teams and can get along with others and listen and understand what they have to contribute to the team.
7.
Definitely. I play soccer and its a team sport of 11 or 7 players.Team work is needed.
8.
Yes I am, I can say I am always very comfortable to jump in on any task, and help anyone from my team on any project.
9.
Yes being in a team is a way in which we can accomplish and learn many things.
10.
Yes, I love people and you realize very quickly that there is no "I" in the word team and together we will all be better people for the organization.
11.
Yes I think so. I can play a neutral when needed and be aggressive when needed.
12.
Yes, but I also work well alone.
13.
Yes I am always a team player.
14.
Yes I am a team player and I'm also able to be a independent player as well.
15.
Most definitely, that's the only way you can get a job done. Working well with your peers.
Question 15 of 18
What was your least favorite job? Why?
Question 16 of 18
Tell me about a time when you had to work with a difficult person. How did you handle it?
Question 17 of 18
Why do you think you will be successful in this role?
Question 18 of 18
How do you manage your time, even on the busiest days?

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