Involved in closely supervising employees on a daily basis, supervisors are on the top rung of the lower rank of management. They’re strong leaders who know how to work hard, but they also know how to follow orders from higher ups.
11 Essential Supervisor Interview Questions
1. What are the essential qualities of a good supervisor?
In your interview answer include these key competencies or supervisory skills that apply to all supervisor jobs.
2. What do you consider to be the role of a supervisor?
“The primary role of the supervisor is to plan, coordinate and oversee a group or team of people to efficiently use available resources and maximize productivity in order to achieve set objectives.”
3. Describe your supervisory style.
When answering supervisor interview questions around your personal supervisory style remember that there is no wrong or right supervisory style.
The only criteria is that it should be appropriate to the situation. Your ability to adapt your style to the demands of the person you are dealing with, the task at hand and the circumstances is key to success as a supervisor.
Provide examples of how you have had to adapt your supervisory style to meet different needs.
4. What are your strengths as a supervisor?
This complete list of employee strengths will help you answer this common interview question. Make sure you highlight those strengths that are relevant to the job opportunity.
Relevant supervisor workplace strengths include:
You may be asked which areas you would like to improve on as a supervisor. This list of common workplace weaknesses can help you with this.
5. How do you motivate your employees/team members?
The more your employees or team members understand about their jobs and responsibilities the more motivated they are. Show how you ensure each subordinate has clarity about his or her role and responsibilities.
6. Tell me about a time an employee made a significant mistake. What action did you take?
This is a behavioral or situational interview question. You are expected to provide an example of how you successfully managed a difficult employee or team member. Find out more about handling the behavioral interview.
In your answer to this supervisor interview question focus on your ability:
7. Describe a time you had to introduce important change in your last job.
Your ability to persuade and influence your employees or team members to accept change is key.
Show how you were able to gain support and commitment from them:
8. Describe a time you had to manage conflict within your department/team/group.
Your example can show how you identified the source of conflict, used the conflict situation as a constructive process to exchange opinions and ideas and clarify roles and responsibilities.
Discuss how you kept the focus on the desired outcome rather than on personal grievances.
9. Tell me about a time you had to coach an employee to perform a task.
Coaching and developing others is part of the supervisor function.
Supervisor interview questions about the development of employees should include your ability to:
10. Tell me about a short term plan you developed for your department/team/group.
These supervisor interview questions explore your ability to plan and organize. Your interview answer should demonstrate your ability to:
Good time management interview questions and answers
11. When evaluating an employee or team members performance what factors are most important to you?
This question is designed to assess your performance standards. Show:
You will also find these pages useful for your supervisor interview
Supervisor interview questions will also include common job interview questions. Find out how to answer frequently asked interview questions.
What Makes a Good Supervisor?
There are several hard and soft skills that effective supervisors possess.
Key skills include:
What characterize a great supervisor?
A great supervisor can motivate their subordinates, they go by example, they have good observation skills, and they can utilize the strengths of the people they lead in their teams. Alternatively you can say that great (production) supervisor maintains the highest possible productivity and motivation of the team (or of each team member), and helps the company to achieve their goals on an ongoing basis.
How do you ace an interview for a supervisor position?
How do you answer what makes you a good supervisor?
How do you pass a supervisor interview?
Why you think you will be a good fit for a supervisor role?