Hiring for an executive role can be extremely challenging and time-consuming for the company. It requires the company to manage costs, look for the right candidate, and also have an existing senior executive that can perform the entire process of hiring efficiently. But what about preparing for the role of the interview? Well, it is as tedious for the candidates to prepare for the role as for the company to hold an interview. Here are some Interview Questions For Executives.
Preparing for the interview questions of the executive would require a focus on strategic, leadership, management level, and other behavioral questions that help any interviewer to understand the candidate effectively.
With the right questions on your side a little effort you can ensure that you bag the opportunity and brace yourself to be a worthy leader.
Interview questions and sample answers
- Why do you want to lead a team in our company?
The question is pretty common in any interview and allows the interviewer to understand a candidate’s professional values. This helps them formulate an overall idea about how a candidate can contribute to the company by signing themselves with the goals, vision, and mission of the organization.
“As a human, I have always appreciated the efforts that the company has taken to develop products that benefit mankind. I would thus love to be a part of the company and contribute my skills in the initiative”.
- What do you believe are the best traits of a supervisor? Could you tell me about the past supervisors you have worked with?
The question helps the interviewer to understand the values you uphold from the past and what work structures you have been following. It gives them an overall idea of what traits you would be reflecting on from the past work. The question determines your behavior as a leader and thought process to view what is morally correct or incorrect.
” I believe that supervisors must indulge the needs of their staff and ensure that they have a comfortable experience working with the company. In my previous position, I have always admired a supervisor who used to actively listen to the problems of the staff and ask them about how they were doing with the company. This made the employees feel valued and respected which indirectly boosted their work”.
- What do you consider your management style?
By mentioning this question the interviewer will try to understand if your management skills align with the company’s management structure. It also helps them to understand how you view your role as a leader and how you would manage your staff.
” I am a person who believes that every person on the team is significant. This allows me to follow a democratic management style, wherein I consider the insight of all the members of my team and actively look forward to suggestions”.
- Could you share a negative experience you had in your previous workspace?
Apart from learning all the positive traits you hold, interviewers will often dig deeper into your negative experience. This helps them to understand what problems you have faced and what values did you inculcate with the experience.
” I once had an experience wherein the supervisor was not efficient with communication on different levels of the team. This caused certain discrepancies in the management level and affected the work in a significant manner. From that experience, I have learned the importance of communication and how crucial it is for any executive position”.
- What do you believe sets you apart from other leaders?
The question allows the interviewer to understand what strengths you possess as a leader and what makes you suitable for the role they have been looking for. This also helps them to understand how you view yourself as a leader, what efforts you will put forward to work with the company, and how you will improve the value of the company.
” I believe I am a leader and have always loved to indulge myself with different leadership roles. Active listening comes naturally to me which allows me to easily understand people. Apart from that I also possess strengths like communication, problem-solving, and critical thinking which helps me analyze any situation effectively.”
- Could you describe our company in a few words?
The question allows the interviewer to understand your idea about the company and look for the research you have completed for the role. Understanding the basic requirements of the company will help any candidate understand what structure and management they need to follow.
” As per my research I would describe this company to be successful, that contributes towards the welfare of the employees. This makes the entire organization a hierarchical family structure that effectively contributes to the needs and demands at every level”.
- How would you plan your initial contract period if you are hired?
Planning is a crucial step for any executive position. It allows the leaders to understand the overall structure of the project and dwell into the depths of management. It helps one bring out the best of their potential and make contributions that can positively affect the overall structure of the company by adding value to the management system. The question thus helps the manager to understand how well versed you are with the organization and whether you meet the company demands.
” In the initial period of my contract, I would like to establish a good communication path between different departments, and also within the team. I would then make an effort to understand the existing structure of the company and modulate my managing style such that it brings the best out of every employee. I would then focus my mind on customer relations and generate reviews that can help the team positively develop products that align with the needs of the customer”.
- How would you motivate your staff to do the right work and keep them motivated throughout the entire process?
Motivation can be a vital factor to decide the quality of work carried out by the staff. Highly motivated and focused staff will often plow good results. By this question, an interviewer judges whether the candidate has the right values and skills to handle a team and motivate them through tough times.
” I believe staff can be motivated by understanding their way of working and looking for insights from their side. Another thing that I would incorporate to improve motivation is incentives that push candidates out of their comfort zone to achieve the task”.
- Could you discuss a strategy that you will implement to improve the company revenue?
The question helps to determine whether a candidate is efficient in making plans to generate revenue for the company. It helps them understand if the candidate is aware of industry trends, what works best for the company, the company policy, and whether they implement the same in their work.
” I believe the best way to generate revenue is to focus on the quality of the product. So my first effort will be to curate the quality according to customer demands. Secondly, I would work with the marketing team to create dedicated campaigns that help me to highlight the strengths of the company to the public. This will help in improving the visibility of the company and also highlighting the morals and values the company adhered to bring more credibility”.
- What do you consider to be a success for any individual?
The question subtly checks whether a candidate believes in setting metrics that can measure success for any project or development. The main aim of this question is to check whether the candidate plans all the work and defines a certain measure through which he or she can consider the project as successful or not. Different executives can set different parameters through which they can measure the success of individuals and the team.
“ For me, success is very important in any project. A drive to achieve success helps me to effectively contribute to the work. When I draft plans for a certain project, I often set metrics like improving productivity by 10% or revenue by 8% as my basic goals. Concrete and reachable goals also help me to motivate my team and measure their success on the same parameters”.
- Would you like to improve in certain areas of leadership and where do you think you would invest your time?
By this question, the interviewer checks how capable a candidate is, and whether they are open to changes. This tells them whether a candidate is fine with learning new technologies, skills, and developing themself as a whole before taking on the role to highlight others’ skills. The question checks whether a candidate is a learning enthusiast and can develop themselves according to the changing industry requirements.
“ I think learning is an inevitable part of anyone’s life. I always make an effort to learn the latest developments in the industry so that I can present my staff with up-to-date knowledge about the industry. As an individual, I would like to spend time in understanding marketing in-depth on digital platforms, and implementing the very thing in my projects”.
- What questions would you rather not answer in an interview or hope I would never ask?
This question is quite tricky, it forces an executive to think about the entire question from a spectrum. The answer to this question often helps the interviewer to understand what skills the candidates lack and what they would rather avoid answering in any interview. A smart move to this question would be to answer a skill that you are willing to learn and have mentioned somewhere prior in the interview or to go through a personal aspect of answering.
“I think I would be comfortable in answering all the questions. As a leader I love challenges and if you were to ask me a question that is beyond my ability I would gladly make an effort to rack my brain and find a satisfactory answer. The questions that I would rather not answer in an interview would be about my personal life as I don’t believe personal and professional life should be mixed on any level”.
- What makes you pursue a career as a leader?
The question is often put in the interview to understand your view about being a leader and what part of the role you enjoy the most.
“ In my opinion leaders are meant to make a difference in the space they work in. Be it helping others or generating revenues and plans for the company. The very idea of making a difference and contributing to the success makes me pursue the role of a leader”.
- How will you make sure that the company’s culture is improved?
A company’s culture determines the overall success of any organization. The question often helps the interviewer to understand whether you value the company culture and what efforts would you make as a leader to change the working effectively.
“I would suggest recreational activities that will help every employee to effectively understand the work culture of the company. Apart from that, I would also work in close conjunction with HR and formulate plans on the process of onboarding and include training that can align the employees with the work ”.
- What were the first three questions we asked you during the interview?
Well, the question is mostly put forward to understand whether you are really an active listener or you have just given a response based on what you have practiced. Practicing questions can be good but understanding the question and recreating them in your way can prove beneficial. So, ensure that you listen through each question.
“ The first three questions were to introduce myself, to know why I love being a leader, and why I would like to lead a team in your company”.
The order can change, so make sure you list three questions that you remember.
When preparing for an executive role a candidate needs to keep in mind that the right questions and their strategic answers can play a vital role in the hiring process. As a candidate, you would be required to be well versed in different departments to pave your path as an executive in the company.
If you represent a company for hiring executives, understand that hiring can be a difficult task, and considering the overall worth of the candidate will effectively show from right planned questions that answer several queries about the leadership qualities of the candidate.
In the end, as a manager or candidate who is preparing for an interview, ensure that you go through all the questions and make the best out of the opportunity. The interviews are designed in such a manner that they highlight an executive’s strength and look for their problem-solving capabilities.