Would you hire someone that always has great ideas but never shares them? It’s one thing to be an analytical thinker, it’s another to be able to communicate those thoughts effectively with those around you. Employers are looking to hire someone that can clearly communicate their logical ideas in an effective and persuasive way. If this is the sort of person the role requires, then it’s quite likely they will ask you questions that directly relate to this talent.
Behavioral Interview Question: Tell me about a project where you needed to analyze key information and then make a recommendation. What kind of thought process did you go through?
While the question itself requires the use of excellent analytical skills, the key focus here also needs to be on the recommendation. How effectively did you communicate the key information of the project? Did you communicate it at all? Make sure you show that you are:
If possible, try to focus on a story that has some degree of resistance to your idea, so that you can make sure that you’re proving how you were able to use persuasion and clear communication. However, only do that if the story makes no one else look bad. After all, part of being persuasive is about understanding why others chose their ideas as well.
“…While company X had a marketing department, IT was in charge of online marketing, since it involved website maintenance and management. It was clear that this was causing a variety of issues. First, marketing is not the priority of IT, who were mainly focused on the server and software. Second, marketing had no way of influencing or directly communicating with IT. It made sense to have IT oversee some aspect of online marketing, but putting them in a position to be the decision makers on all online marketing strategies only served to hold up the marketing progress and create unnecessary friction.
I knew IT would be resistant to giving away their responsibilities, but I also knew marketing needed to be more involved in the online work. So I held a meeting with the heads of IT and marketing and discussed the development of a marketing liaison – a decision maker in the IT department that worked almost exclusively with marketing. They would report to IT, so they could stay in touch with IT’s needs, but also lent the most of their time to the marketing department. They would also be in charge of the decisions, thus allowing IT to maintain control, while simultaneously putting marketing in charge of ideas and strategy. After laying out all of the benefits of this position to both departments, we decided to create the new position, and since then the company’s online presence has grown dramatically.’
Think back to any meeting you had, any time you changed anything at a previous job – even something you did at school, like help alter a curriculum or change a process. Chances are there is something there that made logical sense, and you used persuasion to turn it into a reality. If you can’t think of anything, tell the interviewer what you “would” do if faced with that situation instead.