An interview is one of the most nerve-wracking moments in anyone’s life. Below is a quick guide on 10 possible Communications Manager Interview Questions. There is always that excitement of possibly getting a new job tied together with the fear to underperform and not impress. It is always important to be ready.
Communications Manager Role
The role of a communications manager is one of the most important roles in any organization. They handle the company’s brand image in the press and the external public and aim to promote brand awareness and visibility. With the advent of the digital age, communications managers also now oversee and handle the company’s digital presence, i.e., websites and social media. Questions will always come from your experience, your character, and your vision as a communications expert.
Being one of the most important in an organization is a sensitive one, and certain qualities will be required from you. The interview will be a formality to open up on your strengths and weaknesses that will determine if you are suitable for the position. It is important to note that some of the best qualities of a communications manager are:
- Confident and effective communicator
- Creative and thinks outside the box
- Knowledge of current trends and digital marketing
- Highly organized and manages time effectively
- Adequate writing and editing skills
- Project management skills and very decisive
- Self-starter and strong leadership skills
- Strong advocacy for the company and loyalty
Now let’s get to the best part of this article…the most dreaded questions.
Communications Manager Interview Questions
- What do you understand by the term communications?
This is typically the first question that interviewers ask to get to know your understanding of communications. The best answer would be to describe communications in context with a company e.g.
Communications refer to how companies and organizations communicate with their employees and the external public, i.e., the press, clients, and potential clients and stakeholders.
- What important steps do you consider when developing a communications strategy for a new product/product development?
Interviewers like to get you to open up on your experience in developing communication strategies. Keep your answers brief and straight to the point so as not to confuse yourself. Something like this…
Firstly, I determine how I can reach my target audience and analyze the feasibility of my approach. After that, I develop my communication objectives and what I intend to achieve with the strategy and selected target audience. It is also important to select my channels for information dissemination, that is, the press, and after that outline the activities for different channels. Lastly, I draft my budget and implementation plan and my monitoring plan to measure my ROI.
- Briefly take me through a time when a brand campaign did not go as planned for you. How did you solve the problem?
Questions like these are meant to determine your weaknesses and how you handle crises within your job. Do not try to oversell yourself or throw yourself under the bus either. Remain as neutral as possible…
When I was working for Aurora Group, we began a new weight loss product that was meant to complement a fitness program that we had rolled out the previous month. However, we received a backlash from Big and Beautiful, a movement for plus-sized women claiming that we discouraged women from feeling beautiful in their own skin. It was a stressful time for me as it was my first kind, and I was not aware of what I was supposed to do. However, I managed to sit down with the movement reps and explain our product to them and our intentions. We then issued a press release together once we reached an understanding.
- From your experience, what are the most important qualities of a communications manager and why?
This is to get your take on the leadership qualities for the role
A communications manager should be, first and foremost, an effective communicator. That means being able to speak effectively and write effectively such that your communication is well received. They should also be patient, have a neck for new trends, and ultimately be decisive people. This is because the company has to stay relevant in terms of trends, and it is the duty of a communications person to keep the company in the loop.
- How does digital marketing promote brand image?
This question is to get to test your level of understanding and appreciation of digital marketing in brand image.
Digital marketing increases brand recognition. Social Media has gained popularity with all demographics due to globalization, and the quickest way for an organization to gain popularity and recognition is using digital marketing.
- How would you manage conflict resolution amongst your team?
Questions on managing conflicts test your strength and capability to lead your team members. It is always tricky to answer such questions because you will be trying to please the panel of interviewers to get the job. However, stay within your lane of capabilities, putting in mind that these qualities will be expected of you if you get the job. If you fail to deliver, it might taint your record, and you might lose your job. Something like this can suffice…
It is essential to be a good listener in such scenarios to be executed properly. Maintaining an impartial stance is a good conflict resolver for a management position holder. Personally, I would get both sides of the story and try to resolve it as part as possible. It is important for a manager not to take sides against his/her team members to maintain a good working condition for them.
- Have you had an opportunity to familiarise yourself with our PR efforts? If so what do you think we should improve on?
Questions like these are meant to analyze if you have done any research on the hiring company. This is very important before attending an interview because it shows interest. It can help guide you answer the questions from the interviewer’s perspective. However, if you have not done any research, be honest. It will be more embarrassing to lie.
I have done a little bit of research before the interview, and I think your Corporate Social Responsibility initiative is a good move. It further needs publicity to affect the brand image you desire, maybe by engaging a brand influencer.
- Which media outlets do you follow and do you watch any news channels?
It is the responsibility of every communications manager to stay afloat in current news nationally and globally. Some decisions in organizations will be influenced by what is happening out there, e.g., news of the Coronavirus pandemic. Being out to speed helped most communication managers to plan their strategies well ahead of the lockdown.
I am an avid Fox News and CNN news fan because they are always up to speed with their stories. Every day before I start my day, I tune in to watch the news.
- If we were to hire you tomorrow, what is the first thing that you would do?
Communication managers are planners. They plan their work well ahead. This kind of question is a test to see what kind of a planner you are.
Firstly, I would try to get to speed with the company’s operations, including my department, before I start making any decisions. From there, I can then start my plans after thorough research.
- What is your salary expectation and your availability?
Companies need to be prepared. If they are impressed by you, they want to make sure you are available to start when they require you to do so. For salary expectations, it’s important to get into an interview knowing the salary range for your job. That way, you will not go too high or too low.
I am available to start immediately and as for my salary expectations are $95000 to $120000 per year.
Further Your Skills
To stay afloat and relevant in this industry, it is highly recommended that you keep enhancing your skills. The communications industry hires skills and experience. Nurture and enhance your skills every chance you can get. A communications manager has to be familiar with many practices, concepts, and procedures in the field, which rapidly change with time. Various associations are essential to anyone’s growth in the communications industry, like the Media Communications Association, Communications Media Management Association, etc. These organizations have a lot of training courses and certificates that can further enhance skills for communications experts. If you are looking to begin your career as a communications manager, this is the best stop for you.