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There are two common interview questions that I have a tough time with even though I know that they're going to be asked. I recently had my 3rd interview and still don't feel comfortable with my answers. What sort of approach would you guys take to the following:
Have you ever had a disagreement with a team member and how did you handle it?
Have you ever had a team member who did not pull his/her weight and how did you handle it?
I've had an ok answer to this but I don't think it really gets at what they want to hear about how I would handle these situations in a study group environment. Thoughts?
dukes, I've no idea of your experiences so can't help you choose which to use and how to present it. However, some useful pointers would be:
a) Focus on the positive side of the experience whenever possible.
b) Balance the wish to sound like a good team player with the possibility of sounding arrogant / exaggerated. Eg: choose a rather small example from your everyday work rather than presenting a story of how the whole company was falling apart until you stepped forward and saved the day.
c) Try to show how you understood the other person's motives and act upon them.
d) Don't use an experience with and open end (eg: so we are still fighting on a daily basis with this person and it's becoming unbearable).
e) Don't use an experience where you had to raise issues to a higher authority for them to be solved.
They also want to know your methodolgy for resolving these issues. Did you use logic to convince the other party? or did you have to reach a compromise by discussing each other's different perspectives? or did you simply use your authority / brute force? You get my drift...
Adding to what Hosam said, I think part of "seeing how the interviewee thinks" is gauging their emotional intelligence. So I think it's important to include, as part of your story, that you understood why the person was the way they were. For instance, "I don't think so-and-so meant to be rude, I think they were just in over their head and were taking their frustrations out on me..." and then explain how you used this knowledge to bring them to your way of thinking.