How would you respond to the interview question, “How do you like to be managed?” If you’ve never thought about management styles before – or your preference for a particular style – this question could throw you off balance. Here are some things to consider before responding.
Why Are They Asking This Question?
This question indicates the company is looking for a person who is a good fit with the department and culture.
“This interview question is a good sign that this employer values hiring employees who will be happy with their management style,” says Indeed. “They are looking for someone they can build a good working relationship with. Being honest in your response can help you find a job that is well suited for you.”
What’s the Best Way to Answer?
You want to outline the traits you most appreciate in a manager as well as why those attributes mesh well with your work style. Be specific in your response and try to give examples if you can.
If you’re not sure where to begin, think of past managers – good and bad. Indeed suggests gaining insight by asking yourself a series of questions. “What did they do well? What could they have done better? What would I have changed about their management style? What did I appreciate about their management style? What did they do that helped me succeed in my role?”
If you’ve only had bad bosses, then you know which management styles you do not like. However, this isn’t the time for negativity or gripes. Criticizing past managers is never a good idea and doesn’t reflect well on you.
Try turning the negative into a positive, says The Washington Post. “For instance, if you’re currently working for a micromanager, don’t say ‘I don’t like to be micromanaged.’ Instead, say you like to work to find solutions on your own with regular check-ins and support from your manager.”
“You should have some preference as to what your ideal boss looks like,” but also “show a willingness to adapt to different management styles,” says The Muse. “Outline one to two things that matter most to you … and pick an example (if you have one) from past experience to highlight what it looks like in practice.”
What Can Your Answer Tell Them?
“By asking this question, interviewers will get a sense of your work style, along with how you prefer to interact with supervisors,” notes The Balance Careers. “If you are interviewing with the person who would be your manager if you landed the role, your response will help them know if you two will work together well.”
And, if you’re hired, the fact that the company is interested in matching work styles means you’re likelier to be happy in your role.
If you’re hunting for a new job, contact the recruitment experts at Pro Resources Staffing Services.