If you are well on your way and about ready for a leadership position, you have most likely completed several rounds of job interviews. You probably performed well in those interviews in order to get to where you are now. This time, you will find a different vibe and many leadership interview questions may be new to you. You can expect interview questions geared specifically towards leadership positions that center around your ability to inspire and influence others, your project management track record in addition to your communication and decision-making skills. This article will describe what you can expect in a leadership interview as well as an outline for how you can answer questions.
When Must You Prepare For Leadership Interview Questions?
When an organization is considering you for a promotion, you will need to prepare to respond to interview questions in regards to the leadership skills you possess. Potential employers want to assess if you are the right fit for a future leadership role and how quickly you might be ready for one. Most people change jobs for better opportunities so the quicker they can identify and place someone internally into a leadership role, the longer they will stay with the company. Employees with leadership skills are usually loyal in the scheme of organizational ups and downs.
What Are Common Leadership Positions?
If you are applying to one of these leadership positions, you will need to prepare strong responses to questions about your leadership skills:
- Branch Manager
- Contract Administrator
- Engineering Manager
- Manager & Assistant Manager
- Marketing Director
- Operations Manager
- Product Manager
- Project Manager
- Sales Manager
Guidelines When It Comes To Answering Leadership Interview Questions
- Avoid Copying & Pasting
Interview questions for leaders will include “What are your strengths and weaknesses?” question. Make sure you don’t say “My biggest weakness is that I work too much.” Be upfront and read the job description beforehand in order to craft a personalized response.
- Provide Examples
Be prepared to answer situational and leadership behavioral interview questions . Make a note of the interview questions for leaders’ behavior and practice answering them with personal stories from your past job or life experiences.
- Work Leadership Skills Into Your Answers
Your interviewer will look for relevant leadership expertise. Find creative ways to include how you have demonstrated these skills in the past:
- Behavioral Leadership: Provide relevant examples of how you have influenced the behavior or decisions of other team members.
- Project Leadership: Focus on how you led project team members in order to complete tasks in a timely manner and within budget parameters.
- Decision-Making Process: Work in related examples of recent times that you had to make tough decisions or when conditions were not ideal.
- Communication Skills: The interview will test your communication skills and this is why it is a good idea to practice potential leadership interview questions so you can speak about them with ease.
Common Leadership Interview Questions
- Can you walk me through a specific project you were in charge of and what made it successful in the end?
- Tell me about a decision that was difficult and how it was resolved?
- Can you name a particular scenario where you utilized your leadership skills?
- How would you increase communication across various departments?
- Do you establish priorities for yourself and your direct reports?
- Who is your mentor and when was the last time you met with them to ask for advice?
- What is your leadership philosophy?
Question #1: Can you walk me through a specific project you were in charge of and what made it successful in the end?
This leadership behavioral interview question addresses your organizational skills, ability to delegate tasks and demonstrating overall leadership capabilities.
- Describe the reason for the project and the desired outcome by upper management.
- Talk about the team members, how you identified their strengths and delegated tasks to them appropriately.
- Report on the results of the project.
Question #2: Tell me about a decision that was difficult and how it was resolved?
The interviewer will ask leadership interview questions in order to learn how you make decisions and if you collaborate with team members and management before making a significant decision.
- Describe the decision and all of the possible outcomes you considered.
- Discuss how you came to that decision and who you asked for input.
- Reveal the decision you made and how it was a success.
Question #3: Can you name a particular scenario where you utilized your leadership skills?
Leadership interview questions can apply to someone in a management position as well as someone an employer is considering promoting into a leadership role.
- Explain a specific challenge you faced.
- Describe how you collaborated with fellow team members.
- Talk about the outcome of the situation.
Question #4: How would you increase communication across various departments?
When departments communicate and work together, things get done quicker and without delays. Department isolation is a common problem that adversely affects organizations. Listen for interview questions regarding cross-functional communication and how you contributed towards streamlining that process at previous places of employment.
- Use conversational language such as lack of communication.
- If you have experience managing cross-department communication describe the situation in depth and how your actions contributed towards a positive outcome.
- If you have not had experience within this particular area, acknowledge the lack of communication and provide an example of how it could affect an organization in the long run. Make sure to propose a solution in order to increase communication.
Question #5: Do you establish priorities for yourself and your direct reports?
One of your leadership interview questions will most likely be about priorities. Leaders need to be organized, know how to prioritize multiple projects and delegate effectively to the right people.
- Describe the criteria of a particular model that you know works best.
- Go in depth and explain how that model works.
Question #6: Who is your mentor and when was the last time you met with them to ask for advice?
An employee who has a good mentor is a better individual in the workplace. Leadership interview questions about mentors can show how well you take advice and whether you are ready to mentor someone.
- Talk about the importance of having a mentor.
- Briefly describe your relationship with your mentor, the last time you met and their advice.
- Provide details regarding if you are currently mentoring anyone or if you are looking forward to being a mentor in your next position.
Question #7: What is your leadership philosophy?
This is a leadership-style interview question where you can answer whether or not you have had experience managing a team.
- Read up beforehand on leadership roles and particular styles.
- Describe your specific style.
- Talk about why that philosophy or style works for you and your team.