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Academic Dean Interview Questions

Question 3 of 30 for our Academic Dean Mock Interview

Academic Dean was written by and updated on April 30th, 2017. Learn more here.

Question 3 of 30

What sources do you look to when solving complicated problems?

How to Answer

The interviewer wants to know that you can think outside the box, or even ask for help when you are stuck on a complicated problem.

Maybe you look to a mentor or boss for advice. Perhaps you have handbooks, manuals and systems you turn to for help. You may turn to textbooks, online research, colleagues or even student body history to find the right solution. Show the interviewer that you are knowledgeable and equipped to handle these types of scenarios.

Written by Rachelle Enns

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Advice and Examples: What sources do you look to when solving complicated problems? For an Academic Dean Interview Question.

  • 3. What sources do you look to when solving complicated problems?

      How to Answer

      The interviewer wants to know that you can think outside the box, or even ask for help when you are stuck on a complicated problem.

      Maybe you look to a mentor or boss for advice. Perhaps you have handbooks, manuals and systems you turn to for help. You may turn to textbooks, online research, colleagues or even student body history to find the right solution. Show the interviewer that you are knowledgeable and equipped to handle these types of scenarios.

      Written by Rachelle Enns

      Entry Level

      "If there's a complicated problem, I'll write out what I think the possible solutions would be, and make a note of what my gut tells me to do. Then, I will weigh those potential solutions against one another and list the complications that may arise as a result of each choice."

      Written by Rachelle Enns

      1st Answer Example

      "When I am faced with a complicated problem, I will look to the resources that my current school has provided me. The answer is almost always in there. If it's more of a moral dilemma vs. a knowledge-based dilemma, I will ask my mentor for his thoughts and opinion since I value his expertise in the education industry."

      Written by Rachelle Enns

      Experienced

      "I have a great cohort of professors and deans from my years in the education industry. If I am stuck on a problem or feel I need some additional help, I reach out to this group. If nothing else, they're there to lend an ear and let me bounce my ideas off of them. I value this collaborative, supportive group that I've amassed over the years."

      Written by Rachelle Enns

      Community Answer

      "I refer to the institutional policies and procedures and the experience of my colleagues. I have found that my fellow Deans and coworkers often have great ideas and strategies for overcoming complicated problems. I really enjoy sharing ideas and learning from my colleagues."

      Written by an Anonymous User

      Rachelle Enns

      Our Professional Interview Coach
      Rachelle Enns Reviewed the Above Answer

      It sounds as though you actively seek out learning opportunities from those around you, which is a factor that any interviewer should appreciate. Good enthusiasm in your answer!

      Community Answer

      "As a person who loves research, I draw upon several sources to solve problems. As a department chair, I look to students, faculty, and staff as my most important resource. I appreciate guidance from mentors with experience both inside and outside my institution. I look for information from others with more experience than me to help formulate solutions. I also believe in listening to "new voices" to shape decision-making."

      Written by an Anonymous User

      Cindy Ramsey

      Our Professional Interview Coach
      Cindy Ramsey Reviewed the Above Answer

      Great. You could expand your answer by talking about a decision and illustrating how your sources helped bring you to the right solution.

      Community Answer

      "I have a great cohort of professors, Deans, and former supervisors to include college presidents that when I am stuck on an issue I can reach out to them and they will listen and provide feedback. I value this collaborative group that I have amassed while working in this educational industry over my many years of work. And if that does not work, I engage my supervisor and other Deans of the institution for help."

      Written by an Anonymous User

      Stephanie Cafaro

      Our Professional Interview Coach
      Stephanie Cafaro Reviewed the Above Answer

      That's wonderful that you have such a strong network! It's clear that you feel well supported and have a lot of talented individuals in your network who can support you with problem-solving, when needed.

      Community Answer

      "I've talked with fellow deans and my provost for advice. I've also consulted with my department chairs and associate deans."

      Written by an Anonymous User

      Chad Wilson

      Our Professional Interview Coach
      Chad Wilson Reviewed the Above Answer

      It is clear you are not afraid to ask for help when faced with a complex issue, and you have identified great sources to turn to for counsel. Nice job!

      Community Answer

      "1) First, I will check the requirements and regulations of the college and the University and figure out how complicated is the problem.

      2) I will seek help from the University resources like Title-IX

      3) I will discuss and seek solutions from the university administration, the dean's advisory committee, and the department chairs.

      4) I will seek solutions from Psychological groups if some mental issues are involved.

      Anyway, I will handle it in a professional way to find good solutions rather than make things more complicated."

      Written by an Anonymous User

      Chad Wilson

      Our Professional Interview Coach
      Chad Wilson Reviewed the Above Answer

      Great answer! You have identified numerous sources you can utilize when you need to solve a problem, and the interviewer will be assured you are equipped to handle these types of scenarios when they arise. I provided an example below of how this answer may be delivered verbally in an interview setting.

      "When I am faced with a difficult problem, I first check the requirements and regulations of the college and the university to determine how complicated the problem is. Once the scope of the problem is determined, I will look to the resources the university has provided, such as Title-IX. I also have a great network of support and will discuss and seek solutions from the university administration, the dean advisory committee, and the department chairs, as needed. If mental health issues are involved, I will seek solutions from psychological groups. I believe in handling all problems in a professional way to find good solutions, rather than making things more complicated."