Interview Questions - For interviewing a team lead/mgr

12 Oct 2007 - 9:51am
6 years ago
3 replies
3669 reads
david.shaw6@gma...
2004

Hi All,

I know there's been discussions before about interview questions, but
I don't think there's been discussion on this kind. I've got to
interview a potential teammate who might end up leading us. I'm
curious from those that have been through this as to good questions to
ask to get a good indication of what that person will be like to work
with, as well as possibly work for.

Any guidance would be great!

Thanks,
David

--

w: http://www.davidshaw.info

Comments

12 Oct 2007 - 10:17am
Joseph Selbie
2007

Aside from all the usual:

1. Ask for the references of people he has led. You might get someone to be
candid. It's tough though, as you know, most people are afraid of
consequences and will be circumspect -- and of course these are the
candidate's references so it's likely they will be fiends or very positive
co-workers.

2. Go out to lunch with the potential hire and include the person who would
be his or her boss. Then see what kind of dynamics you can observe. Oddly
enough, people who are great to me (a little too great) as their boss, are
often tyrants to those under their authority.

3. Trust your intuition. Usually if I feel there is something a bit odd
about someone, there usually is. Hard to present as a rational evaluation to
those making the decision however.

Unfortunately though, I think the age old trial and error method will be the
only way you'll find out. Assuming he or she has the technical
qualifications and experience you are looking for, and if he or she has good
enough people skills to have been in the lead position in previous
situations, chances are their skills will be good enough that they will
figure out how to give good answers/impressions through the interview
process about their leadership. Only time will reveal issues.

Joseph Selbie
Founder, CEO Tristream
Web Application Design
http://www.tristream.com

-----Original Message-----
From: discuss-bounces at lists.interactiondesigners.com
[mailto:discuss-bounces at lists.interactiondesigners.com] On Behalf Of David
Shaw
Sent: Friday, October 12, 2007 7:52 AM
To: IxDA Discuss
Subject: [IxDA Discuss] Interview Questions - For interviewing a team
lead/mgr

Hi All,

I know there's been discussions before about interview questions, but
I don't think there's been discussion on this kind. I've got to
interview a potential teammate who might end up leading us. I'm
curious from those that have been through this as to good questions to
ask to get a good indication of what that person will be like to work
with, as well as possibly work for.

Any guidance would be great!

Thanks,
David

--

w: http://www.davidshaw.info
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12 Oct 2007 - 12:03pm
susandoran
2010

Hi David,

A few things you could ask your teammate...

- how do they foresee balancing their management tasks with their project
tasks (assuming they will still be working on projects)

- how do they see their relationship with you-all changing?

- if this is a new "layer" in the organization -- the
new-manager/former-coworker is now between you and who you used to directly
report to -- how would they optimally see you and your old manager
interacting with each other? or how do they see their role in terms of being
an intermediary or advocate? what differences do they envision there might
be with their own relationships with other, more senior staff and managers?
how will they change or adapt?

- maybe toss out a couple of scenarios and see how they respond---like
imagine what specific problems might crop up if the coworker becomes your
(or anyone's) manager....like if you know they have a tendency to come in
late to meetings or miss deadlines or over-commit or get pulled in too many
directions or get snippy under stress or whatever. Build out a hypothetical
and see how they respond. Listen maybe not only for the right answer, but
how self-aware they seem to be, like "np I handle stress extremely well and
stay totally cool under pressure" when you've seen otherwise

- ask them how they foresee building up their skills as a manager

I could think of lots of others but will stop for now. If you think it'll be
worthwhile, maybe you'll tell us a bit more about the circs so we can
suggest more relevant Qs and approaches.

- Susan

On 10/12/07, David Shaw <david.shaw6 at gmail.com> wrote:
>
> Hi All,
>
> I know there's been discussions before about interview questions, but
> I don't think there's been discussion on this kind. I've got to
> interview a potential teammate who might end up leading us. I'm
> curious from those that have been through this as to good questions to
> ask to get a good indication of what that person will be like to work
> with, as well as possibly work for.
>
> Any guidance would be great!
>
> Thanks,
> David
>
> --
>
> w: http://www.davidshaw.info
> ________________________________________________________________
> Welcome to the Interaction Design Association (IxDA)!
> To post to this list ....... discuss at ixda.org
> Unsubscribe ................ http://gamma.ixda.org/unsubscribe
> List Guidelines ............ http://gamma.ixda.org/guidelines
> List Help .................. http://gamma.ixda.org/help
>

12 Oct 2007 - 12:08pm
Cindy Alvarez
2004

I'm
> curious from those that have been through this as to good questions to
> ask to get a good indication of what that person will be like to work
> with, as well as possibly work for.

"As a manager/lead, have you ever inherited a team that you were then
responsible for? What were some of the challenges in working with
them?"

"What other departments have you worked closely with? What have you
found difficult or what do you wish they would do differently in their
collaboration with you?"

By focusing on OTHER people - not YOUR hires, not YOUR team - both of
these questions give the candidate an opportunity to bad-mouth or
blame other people - I want to know if, given the opening, they will
do so. Obviously your inherited team might have been terrible! But a
good manager will be able to talk about how they tried to resolve a
situation and ultimately how they made changes (training, more
managing, firing) instead of just ranting.

Cindy

--
http://www.cindyalvarez.com

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