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Business Manager Interview Questions

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  1. What is your typical approach to managing your team and delegating tasks to other employees? See answer
  2. What do you do when you are given responsibility for a project but not a very large budget to work with? See answer
  3. What is your approach to leading business meetings to ensure that everything goes smoothly? See answer
  4. How do you ensure that your team’s values are aligned with the organization’s? See answer
  5. What strategies do you use to motivate your team? See answer
  6. As a manager, you will be responsible for coaching less-experienced employees. Tell me about someone you coached before.
  7. How do you manage underperforming employees so they can contribute effectively to the company’s goals?
  8. Do you have any experience creating and implementing budgets? What is the biggest budget you’ve handled?
  9. What tools do you use to track the progress of your teams?
  10. What is your approach for providing an employee negative feedback?
  11. Do you see yourself as a risk-taker? What level of risk is acceptable to you?
  12. Tell me about how you will improve the performance of an underperforming team with a poor work ethic.
  13. If hired, what are your plans for the first three months with our company?
  14. Based on what you read in the job description, what strategies will you adopt to help our business grow?
  15. How will you manage a project that is over budget?
  16. What factors do you consider when making strategic business decisions?
  17. How will you handle an employee that consistently misses deadlines?
  18. Tell me about your management style.
  19. Tell me about a time you had to make a difficult decision regarding a project or an employee?
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6 Business Manager Interview Questions and Answers

Q:

What is your typical approach to managing your team and delegating tasks to other employees?

A:

As a business manager, your candidate will be in charge of overseeing the work of several team members to ensure that business objectives are being met. This can include analysts, receptionists and other team members who have varying levels of experience and diverse job responsibilities. As a result, your candidate should be able to understand each person’s strengths and delegate tasks accordingly to ensure that projects are carried out successfully. What to look for in an answer:

  • Outlines a clear plan for delegating tasks
  • Cites examples of past leadership
  • Is reasonable and logical
Example:

“When we start a project, I divide the tasks into different categories and work with my team to ensure that the best-fit person is on the job.

Q:

As a manager, you will be responsible for coaching less-experienced employees. Tell me about someone you coached before?

A:

Your business manager is, oftentimes, someone who has a certain number of years of experience working in team capacities. Since they will be overseeing many employees, it is important that they are capable of leading and mentoring those with less experience in the field. This will help increase your team’s cohesiveness and also help develop the skills of new hires to ensure that your organization’s talent pool remains strong. What to look for in an answer:

  • Cites examples of past individuals they have mentored
  • Explains their process for mentoring and checking in
  • Highlights outcomes of mentorship
Example:

“I checked in weekly with an analyst for three years at my last organization. She is now the vice president of the company’s sales and marketing department.”

Q:

What do you do when you are given responsibility for a project but not a very large budget to work with?

A:

There may be times when your business manager will take responsibility for a project without a lot of funding. This may be because the organization is running low on cash flow or because the project’s scope will exceed what was previously anticipated, so expenses will be more than anticipated. Your candidate should be able to have the business acumen to determine where the problem lies and make a proper business decision with the budget they do have. What to look for in an answer:

  • Explains approach to problem-solving
  • Shows a strong understanding of the business situation
  • Demonstrates strong communication skills
Example:

“When I realize that my budget is too small for the project, I first recalculate my anticipated expenses to ensure all the numbers are correct. Then, I cut out any unnecessary expenditures, such as travel expenses.”

Q:

What is your approach to leading business meetings to ensure that everything goes smoothly?

A:

Your business manager will both lead several direct reports as well as communicate his or her team’s findings to other individuals in different parts of management. The candidate should have the leadership skills necessary to work with analysts to understand key business metrics in team meetings. More importantly, your candidate should be able to synthesize and extract key takeaways from the meetings to report to other members of management. What to look for in an answer:

  • Cites examples of leading group exercises and meetings in the past
  • Exhibits a clear leadership style
  • Explains the outcomes of meetings
Example:

“I always begin my team meetings by taking a few minutes to set up a checklist. When we follow the agenda, we are more productive.”

Q:

How do you ensure that your team’s values are aligned with the organization’s?

A:

Organizational dynamics will be a key part of your company’s success or failure. Retaining top talent and reducing turnover as well as ensuring existing teams work in harmony are all key components of your business manager’s list of daily tasks. As such, it is vital that your business manager is able to create a good team dynamic and ensure that organizational norms are carried out on a daily basis. You are looking for a candidate who understands how culture affects a team’s effectiveness and is able to build a positive work environment. What to look for in an answer:

  • Gives past examples of team leadership
  • Explains how he or she previously upheld organizational values
  • Speaks to dealing with problematic team members
Example:

“I instill a warning system in my teams where each member gets three warnings for mistakes and bad behavior before we escalate the situation to the human resources team.”

Q:

What strategies do you use to motivate your team?

A:

Business managers oversee both capital and human resources, and one of their core functions is to motivate their teams to achieve organizational goals and objectives. Interviewers use this question to identify candidates' leadership style and their ability to empower employees based on individual strengths and weaknesses. The candidate's answer should emphasize:

  • Effective communication skills
  • Interpersonal skills
  • Leadership skills
Example:

“As a business manager, I understand that employees have different core competencies, strengths and weaknesses. For me, taking time to understand each team member's strengths allows me to delegate more effectively. When I see a person struggling to deliver results, I try to identify their challenges, pair them with work that aligns best with their capabilities while providing continuous feedback to help them achieve their fullest potential.”

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