Questions to Ask When Interviewing Senior Project Managers / Program Managers

PROJECT MANAGEMENT

1. Specifically, what do you believe are the most critical responsibilities of a Project Manager?
2. What tools have you used to manage people, processes and projects?
3. Can you provide examples of when and how you used motivational techniques to keep your team (s) energized on difficult projects?
4. Walk me through your approach to a new assignment / project. What systems and processes do you focus on?
5. Please cite examples of difficult clients (or client relationships), and how you have handled them.
6. Describe risk analysis and mitigation methods you have used.
7. Give me two or three specific examples of difficult technical issues that you have resolved.
8. Give me two or three specific examples of difficult conflicts you have resolved on a projects.
9. What has been your experience in negotiating contracts?
10. What have been your most significant achievements? Explain.

LEADERSHIP

1. What motivates you as a Project Manager?
2. How do you see your role as change agent?
3. What actions have you taken to facilitate the career development of team members or subordinates?
4. In the past, how have you improved in areas you were weak in?
5. How have you driven innovation in your career?
6. How have you leveraged relationships to accomplish organizational goals?
7. How have you aligned your role as a Manager with organizational goals? What problems have you had in this alignment process?
8. What makes you stand out from your peers?
9. What does growth mean to you?
10. How did you handle difficult superiors?
11. What was your biggest professional failure?
12. What coaching / mentoring experience have you had?
13. What non-monetary rewards have you given your team members and subordinates? Were these effective?
14. Why is organizational learning important? How have you managed to capture “lessons learned” and either use them on other projects or enable your company to use them?

RESUME – SPECIFIC

1. What was your favorite position? Least favorite position?
2. How did you add value over time in the various positions you held?

LOOKING AHEAD

1. Where would you like to be in career-wise, in five years? In ten years?
2. What is your vision for a well-run project organization?
3. What is your vision as a project leader?

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