Tell Me About A Time You Disagreed With A Decision At Work And How You Handled It
The purpose of this question is to find out how well-developed your communication skills are, how you deal with conflict and your level of maturity in the workplace.
When answering this question, do not criticize the other party. State the reasoning for your disagreement, how you expressed that disagreement, any action you took to reach a resolution and how you reacted to the outcome.
Do You Have Any Questions
Job interview is a dialogue . Ask questions. Start a discussion. Elaborate on their answers.
Each good question shows them that you care, that you want to know more about the things they do, that you are interested in their institution. You can talk about the challenges they face, about the working environment, about the goals they try to attain, etc.
And if you can not come up with anything better, ask them about the next steps of the recruitment process, or when you can start the job.
Im Curious How Did You Come To Find Out About Our Company And What Do You Know About Us
This can be a great way to stand out from other applicants and demonstrate initiative. Almost every company will have a website, Facebook page, Instagram account, or some sort of digital footprint. Spend a bit of time doing some online research:
- If they have a website, check out their About us or Culture/Mission/Vision pages.
- Who are some of the principal people who work there? Who are the founders?
- What sorts of things does this company care about? Do they donate to a particular cause or charity? Which one?
- What are their core values? Which of their core values resonate with you?
- Has the company been in the news recently or have they won any awards .
While your interviewer wont expect you to have in-depth company history, a little here can go a long way.
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What Traits Set You Apart As A Social Worker
Employers are looking at not only what sets you apart from the competition but also what specifically sets you apart as a social worker. It will be important to capitalize on that in your answer.
If youve been in the role for some time, just speak from your experience and what you know to be true. If youre newer to the field, speak from the heart and let them know the essential traits, perhaps the key interpersonal skills you possess that will make you a great social worker.
I would pick two specific traits to highlight that go hand in hand: my empathy and active listening skills. In this field, youre lost without empathy, but I believe in order to be effectively empathetic, you have to master the skill of active listening. I have taken the time to polish both these skills and translate them to my work. Its through empathy and active listening that Im able to be the social worker I am today.
What Do You Consider The Main Goals Of A Supervisor
To maintain high motivation and enthusiasm in the workplace, to ensure everyone works to their full potential, and to take care of any problems that arise in the workplace, or between the workers, such as conflict, loss of motivation, and other problems.
You can also opt for another approach, saying that the main goal of a supervisor is to achieve the goals of the company with their team, and say that everything else is secondary, and should arise from the primary goal
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Why Do You Want To Leave Your Current Job
This can be a difficult question to answer while remaining positive and not criticizing your current employer.
Instead of expressing the negatives of your current job, concentrate on the positives of the job you are applying for.
An example answer:
Im ready for the next stage in my career progression. I feel that I have developed my skills to a level that I could effectively supervise a team. While I have enjoyed working for my current employer, they cant offer me that opportunity.
For more on this, read ‘The Top 10 Reasons to Leave a Job‘ and ‘Answering the Interview Question: “Why Do You Want to Leave Your Current Job?”‘.
How Do You Help Clients Access Community Resources If You Are Unfamiliar With Their Neighbourhood
In the event you tend to clients who are outside your area, the interviewer may want to know how you would approach offering support when you are unfamiliar with the locality. Describe the tools, resources and community support services you know to look for within community areas and how you would help individuals in these types of situations.
Example:’**I did serve a client who was outside of my usual social work area, however, I was unfamiliar with the community agencies that could provide the support they needed. Before I could direct my client to the appropriate resources, I researched the community and found local support groups, career support agencies and affordable child care services to help my client improve their life situation.’
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If A Client Could Benefit From Community Resources But You Arent Overly Familiar With Their Neighborhood How Would You Go About Locating The Right Options And Paving The Way For Access
Part of a social workers job is to connect clients to resources that can help them thrive. But, if you arent familiar with a persons neighborhood, this can be a little tricky. Many organizations serve specific areas only. If your client isnt in their zone, they cant offer their support.
Hiring managers want to know that you can track down resources when the need arises. Plus, they are trying to determine if you can function as an advocate, making connections that ensure the client gains access.
If I needed to find community resources in a region that I dont know well, my first step would involve research. Along with conducting searches on my own, I would connect with my network, tapping into their cumulative knowledge to identify organizations that could potentially benefit the individual or family Im assisting.
Once Ive located an organization, I would reach out directly. This gives me an opportunity to learn more about their offerings and the communities they serve. I could ensure that my client would be eligible in advance and, if possible, initiate any processes to get the ball rolling. With this approach, I can expedite their access to critical assistance, allowing us to move forward with greater efficiency.
What Do You See Yourself Doing In Five Years
This one is all about job commitment.
Some people make job hopping a career in of itself, and your answer here can be telling. Here, your interviewer is determining if you are:
- someone who sets goals
- someone who demonstrates commitment
- someone who is loyal
While no interviewer expects someone to stay at a company forever, try and craft your response in such a way that shows progression in your career, and alignment with the Companys needs and future. Again, self awareness is key your employer doesnt want to send you down an unwanted path, resulting in wasted time and energy for everyone.
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How Do You Stay Updated On Current Events And Trends In Your Field
The interviewer may ask this question to evaluate your motivation and ability to meet standards and comply with legislation regarding social work. Use your answer to highlight any continuing education, special licences and methods you use to stay updated in your field of social work.
Example:’I follow several social work websites and online journals where I can update myself on current research, debates and theories in social work practices. I also attend yearly workshops to keep my licence current and in compliance with all care act legislation. Besides my interests in social work current events and my licence renewal, I also visit organisations in social care and social work to learn about novel approaches to serving target demographics.**’
Where Do You See Yourself In Five Years Time
There arent many career growth options for most positions in social sector . And a good social worker should actually not seek promotion, or a career change.
Oppositely, they should be happy with their job, seeing the purpose, enjoying doing the same thing over and over, trying to improve their work with the target group.
You can say that you will be happy to have the same position, or you can actually turn your focus to your personal life. You can say that you see yourself starting a family in five years time, or just see yourself being a better social worker, a better mother, a better person
Special Tip: To know how to answer a question, and to come up with an amazing answer on a big day, when facing a panel of interviewers, are two different things. If you experience anxiety, or do not know how to answer the questions, have a look at my eBook, the Social Work Interview Guide. Multiple great answers to 25 most common social work interview questions will help you simplify your interview preparation, and deliver when it matters the mostwhen you sit in front of your interviewers. Thank you for checking it out!
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Dont Be Afraid To Close The Deal
Once the interview is over, the likelihood is both you and the interviewer have a good idea of where one another stand. As you stand up post interview and engage in a final handshake, be upfront. Confidence here can go a long way. If you believe you nailed the interview, be bold:Im going to be straight with you – I think that went really well and I think Id be a great asset here. Where do I stand as of now?. Alternatively, if you dont think it went wellyou probably have your answer already.
What Do You Know About Vivid Signs Of Abuse
With this theoretical question, the employer is testing your knowledge and experience. The ability to identify the signs of abuse in a target group is a crucial competency as a social worker.
Example: Unusual changes in behavior, agitation or social withdrawal can be signs of emotional abuse. Bruises or black eyes are evident signs of physical abuse. Also, when the caregiver refuses to let visitors see the vulnerable individual alone, it can be a sign that something is wrong. Finally, the individuals report of abuse is a clear sign that I will take seriously.
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Can You Tell Us Your Strengths And Weaknesses As A Social Worker
Being asked about your strengths and weaknesses is a staple question in almost every interview, irrespective of the role youre applying for. If youre unsure of the answer, ask a friend, family member or previous colleague to help you out.
You want to leave the best possible impression on your interviewer, even if it means highlighting your weaknesses. As long as you mention that you strive to overcome them, youll be on the right track.
I believe I have great communication skills. In fact, Ive been told Im quite a people-person. I can remain calm in conflict situations and find the right solutions in times of crises, and I find that I am extremely responsible. I would say that my weakness is perhaps being too honest, although this is a trait I am working to improve.
Social Worker Interview Questions
Question: Why have you chosen to apply to this organization, and how does it fit with your professional experience?
Explanation: This is a general question the interviewer will use to begin the conversation, learn more about your background, and collect information they can use throughout the interview. The assumption is that youve researched the organization before applying to this job and accepting the interview. You should be able to provide the interviewer with your impression of and some details about the organization and how this role matches your experience and skill set.
Answer: When looking for my next role, I researched many social service agencies in this region. I chose to apply to this agency because of the important work it does, its target client population, the leadership of the organization, and the stability of its funding sources. I believe this is an ideal next step to my career, and I am looking forward to becoming a member of the team.
Question: What do you believe is the most critical aspect of managing a clients emotions?
Explanation: Social workers typically engage with clients who are facing challenging situations. Most clients are likely to be emotional and may exhibit signs of being high strung, nervous, afraid, or some other strong emotion. Your ability to address and deal with these is critical to this job.
Question: What steps would you take if a client disagreed with your clinical approach or treatment plan?
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Describe Your Process Of Creating A Case Plan
The interviewer wants to know how you effectively develop a case plan
Tip #1: Demonstrate how you arrange your case plan
Tip #2: Show your vast knowledge in developing case plans
I create my case plan by first recognizing the case plan objectives that are specific, measurable, and achievable. I then identify the case plan progress reports that evidence the familys progress and highlight the areas which need improvement and should be keenly checked.
How Did You Take A Situation When The Work You Did Was Criticized
Tip: This is a test of how you respond to criticisms that are thrown at you as a leader, does it break you down or improve your work and character. A supervisor should expect his or her work to be criticized, it should be accepted and the work improved upon.
Let the interviewer know that you accepted it positively and reviewed what was done. It didnt break you down but instead fired you up knowing that eyes are watching what you do. Make him understand that you view criticism as a means of checking the quality of what you do. Be positive with your answer about criticism and the people who criticized your work whom you view as essential stakeholders in the job process.
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Tell Me About Your Ability To Work Under Pressure
Heres where the ability to perform under fire comes into play. And, if possible, give an example that is relatable to the type of position that you are applying for.
The ideal way to respond to this question is to provide examples and situations of how you have handled stress in your previous jobs. In this way, the interviewer can establish a clear picture of how well you are likely to react when the going gets tough.
Pro tip: make sure you are not referencing a time when your lack of organization or communication put you in a self induced stressful scenario. This is to say, dont share a story about how your procrastiation created a situation where you had to finish a project quickly.
Id like to think I react to situations as opposed to stress. The reality is, when handled correctly, many problems avoid becoming unnecessarily stressful. Come to think of it, I belive I actually work better under pressure. Its help me produce some of my best work and to be honest I like being challenged. From a stress management point of view, I like to burn off the day with a workout or by going for a run.
What Are Your Career Goals For The Next 5 Years
The interviewer wants to know the missions you want to achieve in your career
Tip #1: Focus on personal, professional growth and development
Tip #2: Assure the employer that you have great goals to accomplish in your profession
I want to sharpen my skills and creativity and successfully come up with ways to fix challenges that occur in these positions. Be identified as a social worker who has positively impacted the lives of people. Make a change in the lives of my client and promoted social justice to all.
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What Are Your Most Significant Weaknesses In The Role Of A Social Worker
When the interviewer asks about your weaknesses, they want to ensure you can recognize your limitations and work on them. Select a weakness that will not impair your performance as a social worker, like a lack of self-control or difficulty in making decisions. Also, be sure to explain what steps you have taken to improve.
Example: I am so dedicated to providing a high-quality service, that sometimes I take on too much work. This is a weakness I am well aware of, so I make an effort to talk with my colleagues when my workload increases. Recently, I have become much more comfortable asking for help and delegating tasks.
How Do You Handle Employees Who Underperform
Hiring managers can ask this question to see if you understand the importance of teaching employees how to set and achieve goals and standards. When answering, emphasize how you’re comfortable addressing issues with individuals and how you use people’s individual talents to resolve their production and performance challenges.
Example:”I recently had a long-term team member who received client complaints. She wasn’t responding to communication, was missing deadlines and started calling off work. I scheduled a meeting with her to find out what was going on. During our meeting, she disclosed the court system selected her as a foster mother and the process, was overwhelming.Together, we worked out a plan to lighten her account load and scheduled weekly update meetings to help her balance responsibilities. She returned to her regular production levels within a month.”
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