Management Interview Question – How Do You Motivate Employees?

JUNE 30, 2010 | BY MICAH

Management job interviews have a variety of questions that relate directly to your own management experience, or at the very least how you expect to use your new position of leadership. It is in the interests of the company to ensure that you are ready to take full advantage of your new role and are going to work harmoniously with the company.

Management questions are about competency, so their answers should be based on your own beliefs and experiences. The only wrong answer to these questions is no answer. Explain to the interviewer exactly what you believe or plan on instituting, and you will likely receive a positive response.

How Do You Motivate Staff?

You will likely be asked questions about how you get staff members to work efficiently. “How do you motivate employees” is found at a number of different management job interviews. Your answer to this should come from your own beliefs and experience. The only thing to keep in mind is to make sure you explain how you motivate employees at all stages of the process, not only completion. Those newer to management like to only talk about how they reward staff for performing above and beyond expectations, but they do not mention how they keep staff motivate during their work.

Sample Answer

“I use a variety of different methods to motivate staff. When a project is about to start and I am delegating tasks, I supply some type of mild reward, such as ‘I will treat you all to coffee once this is over.’

Once the project has started, I schedule weekly meetings where we go over checkpoints to ensure that the staff has reached their goals. I also try to create time sensitive team projects so that the staff is motivated to work harder in order to not let down their partners. Throughout the process I will also check in at random intervals to see if there are any questions or problems. I do not blame staff for falling behind, and will help out where I can, but the random check-ins should do an adequate job keeping them active and working.

Once the project is over, anyone that has performed above and beyond expectations I will report to the executives, and may even request that one of the executives acknowledge the staff member in person if they have time. I also treat the entire staff to coffee, as originally promised.”

This answer discusses how you motivate staff at all stages in the project, from birth to completion. You should give an answer that explains all stages of the process similar to this answer, but add your own motivation techniques where applicable.

Take Away Interview Tips

  • The only poor answer to a management style question is no answer or an incomplete answer.
  • Discuss the type of motivation you use at all stages of the project.

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