Interview Question 14 – Describe a time where you had to drive a team through change. How did you achieve this?
A difficult question if you have not had a very long managerial career or this question is asked at a time in your career when you have not really had to deal with much change in the workplace. If you are reading this at a fairly junior level it is important to try and focus on a work based example even if this does only relate to your weekend work at Next or Gap rather than trying to talk about a sports club or something involving your family. An example of an answer to this question is (using the STAR Technique – Situation, Task, Action, Result):
“In 2006 whilst working as a project manager for BP, the management identified a need to relocate three departments from Aberdeen to The Wirral. This meant that a group of about 140 people would need to be either relocated or offered redundancy packages. My task as project manager was to handle this relocation and to effect a change on the company whilst minimising any effect on productivity from those departments. I instigated a full programme of consultation with all departments and employees to ensure that every member of staff within those departments felt that they had had some input in their own destiny and following this made recommendations to senior management in respect of redundancy packages to be offered and assistance with relocation. The management had not considered using an external contractor to provide relocation services and I persuaded them that this may be a useful exercise, particularly because the cost was minimal to the business but generated a lot of good will with the employees affected. The result was a smooth transition for the department concerned and the operation took place without any loss to the company, both in terms of good will with its employees and also financially.”