A project manager is a crucial job that several other people’s jobs will depend on. Companies wish to get someone who is competent and experienced enough to handle the type of project that will stabilize their position in the industry, as well as bring in much needed profit. It’s important to know what to expect, so you can prepare for your job interview. You should expect to be asked questions about your ability to manage projects effectively, considering that you’re the person who will be spearheading the whole activity. There will be matters pertaining to different subjects and skills, such as your ability to plan, delegate, communicate, innovate, encourage people and evaluate.
1. How many projects have you handled before and what were these?
Always answer honestly or you risk your career and the entire project. Some companies will require you to produce a certification to that effect or may ask for the contact number of the person or company you’ve worked with before. Potential employers who know about your experience will most likely give you tasks that they believe are on par with your current experience. Describe the projects you’ve handled briefly but accurately by describing the industry, the different departments and the specific objectives.
2. What were the most challenging aspects of the project and what did you do about these?
Potential clients or employers like to define your problem-solving skills. As you get ready for your interview, think of three very difficult situations. These should also be based on your actual experience. Describe the predicament in each, then explain how you created specific solutions for them. Companies like it when you innovate, not compromise. Some of the usual difficult situations in projects include managing incompetent team members or dealing with new strategies employed by the competition.
3. How do you encourage team members?
This question intends to determine your leadership skills. It would be to your advantage to provide actual solutions to this type of problem, instead of merely answering that you took care of the job yourself or removed the person from the project. Potential employers like to see how you can motivate bored or destructive team members and transform them into productive and efficient individuals. Enumerate your techniques in dealing with unproductive members, and share one experience in which you completely changed a person for the better.
4. What are your strengths and weaknesses?
Project managers should have the ability to evaluate themselves. Companies do not appreciate people saying that they have no weaknesses. You increase your chances of getting the project if you show that you’re aware of your limitations and will focus on improving them. Also, share your key strengths and how you have used them in various projects. When it comes to weak areas, companies determine if you have the ability to delegate tasks to more competent and skilled members of the group.
5. What are the essential qualities of a project manager?
The traits and characteristics may differ, depending on the size and type of project. However, many companies will agree that leadership and the ability to empower other members of the team are the key qualities that will make a good project manager. Projects will depend largely on the leader and your skill in appointing activities to the right individuals based on their core strengths, skills and experience.
6. What project management systems do you use?
Companies like to know if you’re up-to-date on existing management models and systems. Cite a number of programs and software that you’re using. Also, mention books or materials pertaining to project management and any concepts and principles you constantly refer back to when dealing with projects.
7. How do you close a project?
Typical interview questions also deal with how well you can finish a project. Many groups have experienced having project managers who do not finish the job strongly or fail to finish at all. Describe one or two of the best projects you’ve managed from start to finish. Share how you evaluate the results and related feedback given by team members and clients.