A great project manager is primarily valued for their soft skills – their leadership, their planning and strategic thinking, their empathy, and their ability to communicate with all members of a team. However, technical skills are also vital for project managers to have so they can fully understand the work that their team members are working on and provide guidance when needed.
When interviewing for a project manager position, you may be given mostly behavioral questions and quizzed on your soft skills, but some companies also ask project manager applicants technical questions too.
In this guide we’ll provide X sample questions that you may be asked in an interview for a project manager role. For more tips on interviewing for a technical role, check out our 2022 Guide to Acing the Technical Role.
- Explain how this product works.
- Can you explain “scope creep?” How do you deal with “scope creep” in your projects?
- Do you have a favorite project management software or tool?
- How do you track a project’s progress?
- How do you track your team’s performance?
- Talk about a favorite project that you’ve worked on?
- Talk about a project that you worked on that had problems or failures? How did you deal with this?
- Tell us about a mistake you made on a past project?
- How do you motivate your team?
- Do you have a strategy for delegating tasks?
- Talk about your process for collecting project requirements.
- Talk about the elements of a good project plan.
- How do you identify and plan for risks?
- How do you manage conflicts between members of your team?
- How do you manage underperforming team members?
- How do you deal with change requests?
- Tell about a time you have demonstrated integrity.
- Tell about a time you have demonstrated initiative.
- How do you deliver bad news or failure?
- Which metrics do you think are important to track?
- Are you familiar with six sigma principles?
- Are you familiar with agile methodology?
- How would you describe your leadership style?
Now that you’re familiar with the questions you may be asked in a project manager interview, you’ll want to practice your interview skills and mentally prepare. Below are a couple more steps you can take to ace your project manager interview:
- Mock Interview
Practice answering these questions out loud, as though you are speaking with your interviewer. If possible, have a friend act as the interviewer and ask the questions. It’s a good idea for them to switch up the order so you can get used to some uncertainty during the real interview. If you can’t find someone to act as your ‘interviewer,’ at least try answering the questions out loud on your own. You can record yourself and watch the video back to learn which answers come off as impressive and spot any questions that you struggled with.
- Watch Interview Simulations on YouTube
To get a feel for how to answer these questions, try searching YouTube for a video of someone else answering in a mock interview setting. You should not memorize the answers they give or try to copy them exactly, but their answers should give you a feel for how deep you should dive on each question.
- Learn More From Our 2022 Guide to Acing the Technical Interview
This resource is geared towards interviewing for highly technical positions. A project manager role is not the most technical position but it is still important that people in this role are great at communicating about technical topics.