How to Show You Can Take Charge of a Project

FEBRUARY 17, 2015 | BY LIA
Taking charge of a project

If you had to take on a leadership position, could you do it? When most people think about being a leader they imagine a huge, radical change in behaviour that is obvious to them and everyone around them. But leadership isn’t always about changing the world, often it’s more about a series of small, everyday gestures that make a difference. 

Behavioral Interview Question: Tell me about a team project when you had to take charge of the project? What did you do? What was the result?

This question is pretty straight forward. it gives you the opportunity to show that you have leadership potential and that you are a true team player. Don’t look for a life changing event, just think back to a time where something happened that forced you to take charge. It can be a small change, it does not need to be monumental. Answer it positively, and show that you handled the situation calmly and with maturity. Here is an example of a simple, but perfectly acceptable answer:

“I was part of a sales team that dealt primarily with email marketing. Originally the team lead was the VP of sales, but he started to feel overwhelmed with his other work. During one of our weekly meetings, he admitted he had enough. He said to the group ‘unfortunately, my other tasks are keeping me from dedicating myself to this project. MY NAME, you’re in charge now. Call me if you have any questions’ and he left. I’ll admit that at first it was surprising since we hadn’t discussed it before and his departure was unexpected. But I had my own ideas for our email marketing campaign that I wanted to try anyway, and my coworkers were very receptive to the idea of changes and supported me the entire way.”

Off course this won’t be your exact answer, just try and focus on developing this type of answer. It is simple, effective and can be applied to many different types of jobs. Maybe you were one of a group of cashiers at a grocery store when suddenly your supervisor had to go to the backroom and you had to take charge. Maybe you were working on a small team project and your boss got sick. There are lots of examples of this happening, and any good answer here will be impressive to the interviewer.

You may also be asked a similar question more directly. A common Management Interview Question is – Do You Think You Will be Comfortable in a Supervisory Role? If you have the time look over our prepared answer to that question as well.

See Also – Related Post – 5 Key Steps for Leading Any Difficult Group

See Also – Related Post – How to Show you Can Manage a Project 

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