How to create awesome executive candidate interview questions
Your ideal executive candidate is probably an influential strategy wizard.
Are we right? 👍
Here are some more things to look out for:
- Strategic-thinkers: As executives are responsible for driving growth, they should be awesome decision-makers.
- Influential leaders: These candidates need to manage and motivate like a pro. Look for people who make tough decisions confidently, have strong problem-solving skills and lead by example.
- Goal oriented: Executives are responsible for team results, so their goals need to closely align with the company’s.
Executive interview questions
- How would you describe your leadership style? What would you do if you had to shift that style for a tough deadline?
- How would you ace your feedback to an underperforming employee?
- Do you know about 360-degree performance reviews? How would you react to negative feedback from a team member?
- What’s your #1 piece of advice for a successful team?
- What would you do if a department manager consistently overruled your ideas?
- Describe a successful project you managed end-to-end and how you overcame challenges.
- How would you inspire an unmotivated team?
- What’s the ultimate number of meetings for team leaders and the executive management team? How do you prepare for them?
- Tell me about a time your idea improved the company in some way. How did you implement it?
- Describe a time you had to move fast on an urgent decision. How did you communicate your decision with your team?
- Everyone makes mistakes. Tell us about one you made at work and what you learnt.
Candidates to look for
- Value matches: Your candidate could be with your company for a long time. Look for people with career goals that match your company’s.
- They dig into experience: The right exec will have a ton of experience, so expect to hear about it. Bonus points if they talk openly about difficult situations.
- Great culture fit: The ideal candidate will fit in with your company culture but won’t be afraid to pitch new ideas.
- They have it all: Look for candidates who combine industry know-how with soft skills like team management, communication and decision-making.
- Bonus tip: Diversity is key for a thriving workplace. Keep an eye out for executive-level candidates from varying backgrounds and aim to eliminate bias from your hiring process.
Candidates to avoid
- Stressed or uncomfortable candidates: Interviews are hard. But, if candidates are so stressed they can’t find an answer, that just proves they don’t handle difficult situations well.
- Unprepared candidates: If your candidate didn’t prepare for their interview, they’re probably not that interested.
- They lack presentation skills: You’re after a candidate who can represent your company to people from all levels. If they lack confidence, are reserved or unprofessional, a C-level role probably isn’t for them.
- Arrogance: Arrogant candidates are a big no-no. Great leaders are under constant self-improvement but arrogance = resistance to new ideas.
- Dishonesty: If you can tell a candidate is lying or you spot inaccuracies in their answers, they’re not the pro you’re looking for.