Tough Interview Questions for Managers: How Do You See People Fail as Managers?

By Jeff Altman, The Big Game Hunter
How do you answer this tough interview question for managers that will help you create a favorable impression with an interviewer?

Tough Interview Questions for Managers: How Do You Approach an Employee About a Performance Issue?

Here’s a tough interview question for managers. What’s a common way you see people fail as a manager? Now, I remember from my own experience, many years ago, I was interviewing two individuals to run a workshop. And each of them had done very well on a previous workshop in their particular role. And nowinterview we were going to ask them to step up to be the overall facilitator for it. And when I interviewed each of them, and asked them, What would you say the most important thing is, the first thing you should decide on in your role running this retreat? Each of them answered from their own perspective. ‘I need someone who could do what I did last time,’ is the way each of them answered, as opposed to thinking in terms of the overall workshop and finding someone who could lead it and thus support them in identifying what was necessary for the rest of it and its leadership.

I think of it from the standpoint of what do they really want to find out about you, the answer is, can you think outside of your own limited scope? Can you think bigger picture?

Now a typical answer is, ‘You know, I often see managers who lack transparency and it becomes their directive. They don’t explain their decisions. They just expect people to follow things by rote.’ That’s a pretty traditional answer to this question. But the concept is, as you tell this, you want to tell a story, that perhaps you observed someone who was struggling in their role, and they were losing the support of their team because they weren’t transparent.

Remember, wherever you can, think of a story that you can tell. I rushed through mine but just think in terms of a story that you can tell, that connects with the audience and allows them to see that you can think outside of your scope, or your previous experiences and can think bigger picture.

So I’m Jeff Altman. Hope you found this helpful. My website is Go to the site and go exploring there’s a ton in the blog to help you and people hire me for no BS career advice. So that can involve a job search, hiring more effectively, management, leadership, career transitions, dealing with workplace issues– a holistic approach to you and your career.

Tough Interview Questions for Managers: How Do You Approach an Employee About a Performance Issue?


Jeff Altman, The Big Game Hunter
Jeff Altman, The Big Game Hunter

Jeff Altman, The Big Game Hunter is a coach who worked as a recruiter for what seems like one hundred years. His work involves career coaching, as well as executive job search coaching, job coaching, and interview coaching. He is the host of “No BS Job Search Advice Radio,” the #1 podcast in iTunes for job search with over 2400 episodes.

Are you interested in 1:1 coaching, interview coaching, advice about networking more effectively, how to negotiate your offer or leadership coaching? People hire me to provide No BS career advice whether that is about a job search, hiring better, leadership, management or support with a workplace issue. Schedule a discovery call at my website, 

My courses are available on my The courses include ones about Informational InterviewsInterviewing, final interview preparation, salary negotiation mistakes to avoidthe top 10 questions to prepare for on any job interview, and starting a new job.

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