Teamwork Interview Answers

Most jobs require their employees to be involved in a team when carrying out their tasks. Even if they are not explicitly in a group at all times, those at their individual desks are still working together to achieve a common goal. Because this applies to most jobs, employers are seeking employees who can do this well. You must then prove your ability to handle the issues of a team properly.

Listed below are five questions typically asked during interviews in regards to your ability to work on a team. Each question is followed by guidelines you must adhere to in order to respond to the question successfully.

1) Have you ever been in a situation in which you were part of a team but your role was not clearly defined? How did you deal with it?

This question is testing your ability to handle problematic situations in a rational manner. Your response must consist of actions you will take such as:

-Speaking up and clarifying your position on the team without demonstrating any hostility
-Not allowing to get “pushed over” or be invisible by making one’s presence known in a tactful manner
-Demonstrating your willingness to contribute

2) When your team encounters issues with each other, how do you attempt to resolve them?

Again, this is a question that tests your problem-solving skills. You must show that you:

-Value working relationships and understand how valuable they are to the company
-Listen to each person’s perspectives and try to reason with them
-Encourage them to voice out their opinions calmly
-Can suggest voting on a particular side if the issue is about making a certain decision

3) What do you think makes a team successful?

The interviewer is fishing for your opinions on what makes a good team. Respond with qualities that you believe are necessary for a team to achieve good results such as:

-Good communication
-Balance of skills within a team
-Being able to learn from each other
-Each person having a voice
-Reliability of each team member
-The ability to share and constructively make comments
-Active Participants
-Open-mindedness and flexibility
-Problem-solving skills
-Respectful and supportive of each other

4) If you observe that one member of the team is not contributing anything, what actions would you take?

Because this is a common problem within teams, the interviewer would like to know if you would simply allow that team member to not do anything. Of course ignoring the issue is never the solution. It is better to:

-Confront the person individually and nicely express your thoughts on his performance (having a one-on-one conversation is more beneficial so the person does not feel as if he is being “ganged up” on)
-Use delicate words and control your tone of voice as you may come off as attacking
-Emphasize to him or her that goals can be achieved in a more efficient manner with the help of each member and that without him or her, some great ideas might be missed

5) Give an example of a time when you were part of a team. How did you perform your role?

The answer to this will vary per person, but be sure to include:

-The specific tasks assigned to you
-Your willingness to help your other team members out with their tasks even if those were not the ones assigned to you
-That you exerted more than the minimal amount of effort
-Independent when you needed to be, but also was not afraid to ask questions

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