How Do You Set Goals
Great leaders understand the importance of goal setting. This leadership interview question gauges whether you can set effective goals for yourself and your team. Consider citing your goal-setting process such as the SMART format to help you set specific, achievable, measurable, relevant and time-bound goals.
Example: I use the SMART structure when setting my goals. In my current role, I take time to think about the goals I want to achieve and whether they’re achievable. Once I set the goals, I strategize on how to realize them and which measures and deadlines to put in place to meet them. I then delegate tasks to team members according to their individual strengths. I use a visual progress tracker for measuring our short- and long-term progress.
First Consider The Traits Of Good Leaders That You Admire
Make a list of people in your life who represent good leaders. It can include people youve worked with, managers youve had, family, friends or prominent figures. For each person on your list, consider what qualities demonstrate good leadership. Consider the traits that you admire and would like to develop in yourself. Think about if your examples of good leaders share any traits. Those are the traits that make a good leader.
Describe A Time You Went Above And Beyond
Keep in mind that leadership can be exhibited in something as simple as spotting a problem at work and finding a solution. Employers will appreciate any time that you went above and beyond the basic requirements of your job. You dont have to have served as a project manager to describe a time that you were a leader. If you found a way to make workflow more efficient, better execute a task, or help new members of the team, employers will love to hear these examples of leadership.
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Lastly Use The Star Method
When you understand what leadership means to you, think back on your work experience and identify an example of a time when you demonstrated leadership. Describe the event using the S.T.A.R. method by explaining the situation, the task you had to complete, the action you took and the results you achieved. This allows you to answer the question, What does leadership mean to you? and provide an example of when you have demonstrated leadership accordingly.
When There Is A Disagreement On Your Team How Do You Handle It
If you are trying to secure a management role, conflict resolution is going to be a core part of your job. At some point, a disagreement will happen. If it gets out of hand, youll need to diffuse it.
The hiring manager wants to know that you arent afraid to manage conflict and that you have the skills to pull it off.
When theres a disagreement, my first step is to understand the perspective of each person involved. I use active listening skills, giving each party my full attention. Ill summarize my understanding of the situation, asking probing questions to gain additional clarity as required. At that point, my goal is to facilitate conversations that lead to resolutions. Using a calm and respectful approach, Ill work with the involved parties to find a reasonable compromise, brainstorming, and discussing ideas until a suitable option is found. The process ensures everyone can learn more about the others perspective and that the resolution is a collaborative venture.
Quiz: What Type Of Leader Are You
Many different leadership styles make a police department. Which type are you?
Leaders have varying characteristics. A leader is anyone within a team who can further a department and bring out strengths in self and others. Leaders emerge to inspire others. What type of leader are you?
Continuous progress takes all types of leaders. Comment below. Which type of leader are you? What type of leadership do you like to work with?
How To Choose And Develop Your Leadership Style
As someone who is interested in the leadership path or looking for more structure in their leadership approach, it can be helpful to choose a leadership style that feels authentic to you. Some questions you may ask yourself when trying to determine which style is right for you include:
- What do I value moregoals or relationships?
- Do I believe in structure or freedom of choice?
- Would I rather make a decision on my own, or collectively?
- Do I focus on short or long-term goals?
- Does motivation come from empowerment or direction?
What does a healthy team dynamic look like to me?
These are just a few examples of questions to ask yourself while reading through leadership styles to help you decide which style you relate most with. To develop your leadership style consider these strategies:
While a certain leadership style may be impactful in a specific jobfor example, autocratic leaders tend to do well in military settingsthe best leadership is using a blend of these styles. Knowing what style to enforce in workplace situations comes with time, practice and emotional intelligence. Remember, most leaders borrow from a variety of styles to achieve various goals at different times in their careers.
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Top 25 Leadership Interview Questions
Many candidates assume that only managers have to face off against leadership interview questions. It makes sense that leaders would need to prove that they can, well, lead. Its a core part of their job, after all.
But, in reality, anyone may actually find themselves staring down a leadership question.
Because leadership is a ridiculously valuable soft skill. Those who know how to lead often step up during a crisis, and they are willing to guide others, sharing their expertise to help others thrive. Its a great quality, and hiring managers are chomping at the bit to find it.
What does that mean for you?
That you need to be ready to put your leadership capabilities on display. Lets look at how you can make that happen.
What Leadership Skills Do You Find Most Useful
Leadership skills are essential to nearly every career, but certain skills may be more helpful in specific situations. This question allows you to define good leadership in your own words. Showcase skills and qualities such as patience, active listening, empathy, positivity, reliability and team building.
Example: While communication skills like active listening and intentional body language help me to be a good leader, holding myself accountable is essential to lead by example. In my last position, we created a new dress code policy, and I was asked to enforce it as the supervisor. My approach was to discuss the new policy, clearly outline what new clothing items were acceptable and provide a deadline for when the policy went into full effect. I also listened to any concerns my team had about whether the new dress code would be comfortable enough to work in.
At the next shift, I wore the new uniform to show my team what the appropriate dress code looked like and to demonstrate how it was more comfortable than the old uniform. As a result, my team felt more confident switching to the new policy, and the whole team began following the dress code before the deadline.
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Tips For Giving The Best Responses
Sound like a leader. The tone of voice and body language you use when answering questions about leadership are as important as your actual responses. Sit up straight, maintain eye contact, and let your expression display your enthusiasm for your work and the company.
Look like a leader. As a job candidate who will be being groomed for leadership, you should be well-groomed in your appearance as well. Here are tips for what to wear to your interview.
Strategize like a leader. Whenever you can, use your answers to show how you would address common management issues for the employer. Research the company ahead of time so that you are well-versed in its organizational structure, company culture, mission, successes, and challenges. You should also prepare a list of questions to ask the interviewer that shows that you have thought deeply about how you could bring value to their operations.
Give credit where its due. Good leaders acknowledge the contributions of their team members. As you describe instances where you assumed leadership, remember to credit the individual and collaborative efforts of those you managed.
Example Leadership Interview Questions To Ask Candidates
- Tell me about a time you struggled with work-life balance. Did you manage to solve the problem? How did you do it?
- Tell me about a time you took the lead in a team project. What was the outcome of the project?
- Tell me about a time your idea improved the company in some way. How did you make sure it was implemented?
- Two employees left from your team just before the deadline on a big project. How would you change your leadership style to meet the deadline?
- How do you monitor the performance of individual team members?
- In what specific ways do you motivate your team?
- How do you make decisions about the compensation of team members?
- How would you describe your leadership style?
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How To Answer The Interview Question: What Is Your Leadership Style
If a hiring manager asks this question, it likely means they are looking at leadership as a significant factor when deciding who to pick. You dont necessarily need to have direct experience as a manager or supervisor.
The role itself might not require leadership skills. However, it is a sign that the organisation seeks to bring more leaders on board to help in the future.
When answering this question, here a few things to include:
- Outline a System: The hiring manager wants to find out if you have uncovered a leadership method that works for you. They know that there is no one-size-fits-all way to go about the process. It is also essential for you to sound like a reasonable leader. The company is unlikely to want an autocrat.
- Cite Examples: If possible, avoid saying that you have never had to lead anyone. Even if you have to go back to secondary school when you were the chess team captain, find an occasion when you were in charge. Then you can provide a specific example of how and when you used your leadership skills.
- Why It Is Valuable: The it in this instance is your leadership style. You need to communicate it and explain why you feel it works for you or is valuable in a general sense.
What Are Good Leadership Interview Questions
- Can you tell me about a time when you demonstrated leadership skills?
- Are you able to delegate responsibilities efficiently?
- What can you do to motivate a team?
- What values are most important to you as a leader?
- Are you able to collaborate with others and accept new ideas?
- Who is your favorite leader? Why?
- Are you more comfortable with verbal or written communication?
- Can you tell me about a time when you solved a problem for your employees/employer?
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Tips To Assess Leadership Skills In Interviews
- All candidates will claim to have communication and motivational skills. Behavioral and situational interview questions will help you identify how they use these skills in work-related scenarios.
- Leadership is not about knowledge. A good leader shares the companys values and contributes to its long-term growth. Opt for candidates who aspire to grow and are interested in developing their careers.
- Team leaders get involved with hiring and training new members. Ask interview questions to gauge their familiarity with these procedures.
- A good leader is tenacious during hard times. Use work-related leadership examples to identify how candidates react to challenges and approach difficult decisions.
- Ask leadership questions that reveal candidates creativity. Employees who can make quick decisions when things dont go as planned can prove vital for your company.
How Would You Describe Yourself As A Team Leader
This question works as a self-review for interviewers, making it a popular team leader interview question.
With this question, the interviewers try to understand the approach you follow to lead a team.
Discuss your team leader skills to give them a general idea. You can also talk about your relationship with your team and how it helps you in leading a team.
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Describe Your Weaknesses As A Leader
As well as what makes you great, you should be prepared to talk about any weaknesses you may have.
Self-awareness is an important trait for any leader, so admitting weakness will not make you unsuitable. However, you should always state how you try to overcome your weaknesses and are a good leader in spite of them.
Perhaps you fell behind on a project because you were reluctant to delegate work. You adjusted your approach and trusted your team to work independently. As a result, your team worked more efficiently and the project was completed on time.
Tell Me About A Time You Implemented Change
Good leaders are innovative and forward-thinking. If you can demonstrate a time you successfully oversaw a positive change, you will demonstrate leadership potential.
Perhaps you implemented a new administrative system at your previous job or introduced a formal mentoring program to support new employees. Maybe you invented and filled a new position on your college societys committee.
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Dont Say You Have Never Been A Leader
Even if you have never been a traditional leader, you must have managed a project at least once in your career. If youve ever led a class project or a group task at your previous job, then you were a leader. Think about how you managed the situation and use that to discuss your leadership style.
Whatever you do, dont say that you have never led or managed people. State that there is a method that works for you. When employers ask you about your leadership style, what they really want to know is whether you are observant. So, determine your leadership style beforehand and share the style as a method that always works for you.
Dont Say Youve Never Led Anyone
Pick your most impressive leadership experiences as you think back and try to come up with an answer for this. It might be on a sports team, in a class project, or previous jobs.
But whatever you do, dont answer this interview question by saying, Im not really a leader, or Im not sure, Ive never really led people in the past.
Find SOMETHING, no matter what. .
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Preparing To Ask Great Questions
If theres a particular leader you admire, youre probably familiar with their work. You read their blog or newsletter, listen to their podcast, and/or follow them on social media. If theyve written a book, youve read that too.
Dont waste precious moments of face-to-face, one-to-one interaction on questions that theyve already answered a dozen times.
Theres no point, for instance, asking them how they got started in their industry if the whole story is already published on their blog or in their memoir.
Example Answer : Pacesetting
Pacesetting managers establish challenging goals for employees to aim for, like sales quotas or quick deadlines. Their goal is to motivate their employees to reach beyond normal expectations to achieve heightened work performance.
” I love it when managers set high expectations to encourage employees to reach new levels of job performance, so I respond well to leaders who have a pacesetting management style. I also work well under managers with a transactional management style because it gives me an incentive to work toward. At my previous job, my manager used a management style that combined both transactional and pacesetting methods, which inspired me to exceed my weekly goals.”
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When Might You Be Asked About Your Leadership Skills
Many job seekers assume that if theyre not looking for a management role, they will escape leadership interview questions. In fact, employers are looking for potential leaders at any employment level, including entry- and graduate-level.
Businesses look for employees who are dedicated and likely to progress within the company, and your interviewer will ask you leadership questions to assess whether you are a good long-term investment.
Therefore, whatever your experience level, it is vital you prepare for behavioral leadership questions by referring to specific times you have demonstrated leadership qualities.
Example Answer : Laissez
Laissez-faire managers trust their employees to conduct their job duties with little to no instruction. They typically provide advice in response to problems or initial guidance before employees start projects.
“I am a very independent worker, and I have a great deal of self-discipline that allows me to maintain my work performance with very limited instruction. Because of this, I usually work well with managers who instill their trust in me to complete tasks with little guidance. However, I do also enjoy working for managers who have a pacesetting style as it gives me clear goals to drive my daily tasks.”
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Management Styles And Examples
While managers may use a blend of the below styles depending on the circumstances, there are a few commonly-used styles many people use to organize and lead their team to achieve a common goal:1. Authoritative6. Transformational7. Collaborative
In the section below, we’ll explore these management styles in detail including advantages, disadvantages and examples of each.