15 of the Best Job Interview Questions to Ask Project Managers

Need help figuring out what to ask candidates during the interview?

You can bet that PMs are well-versed in how to answer standard interview questions like, “What’s your greatest strength? Weakness?” or “Why should I hire you?” or even “Where do you see yourself in five years?”

Because questions like these are so often used to gauge a PMs potential to perform well in a particular sector, answers are usually very scripted, insincere, and most cases tailored to what you’re looking for in a candidate. And, unfortunately, that doesn’t tell you a whole lot.

The best PMs are like axles: They smoothly link management, clients and staff to keep projects rolling along. If you want route out the good project managers from the mediocre ones, you’ll need to spark a more authentic and revealing discussion.

How, the answer is simple: ask better questions!

  1. “Why are you here?”
  2. “What’s your definition of hard work?”
  3. “Tell me a little bit about your career path, how did you move into Project Management?”
  4. “What do you feel is the value of a good Project Manager (PM)?”
  5. “How do you take advantage of your strengths? How do you compensate for your weaknesses?”
  6. “What’s the one accomplishment you’re most proud of? Why?”
  7. “Describe one of your most challenging projects? Why was it challenging and how did you pull the project through it?”
  8. “Tell me about the kinds of performance metrics you use to see if the project is on track?”
  9. “Tell me about a time when you encountered a serious conflict and how you dealt with it.”
  10. “How do you handle a situation where the client does not want to surface and address Risk?”
  11. “How do you make decisions?”
  12. “How do you deal with client employees with low motivation or low skills?”
  13. “What is motivating your job search?”
  14. “What qualities in your co-workers bother you most? Do you appreciate most?”
  15. “If I were to ask your current boss what your greatest strength is, what would he or she tell me?”
  16. “What types of projects don’t you want to work on?”
  17. “Tell me about a work incident in which you were totally honest, despite a potential risk or downside?”
  18. “What will make you love coming to work here everyday?
  19. “If you were limited to just one person to get advice and help from, which person would you choose? Why?”
  20. “What’s your greatest fear about this opportunity?”
  21. “Tell me about a time you screwed up?”
  22. “Was there a time you thought the program was going “too fast?” What happened?”
  23. “Describe a time when you were asked to do something you weren’t trained to do. How did you handle it?”
  24. “What would you do if management made a decision you didn’t agree with?”
  25. “What changes have you made in working with others to be more effective at work?”
  26. “If you had only one word to describe yourself, what would it be?”
  27. “What is there about this opportunity that most excites you?”
  28. “Describe the boss who would get the very best work from you?”
  29. “What can you tell me about this job that isn’t in the description?”
  30. “Is there any question I haven’t asked you that I should?”

What do you think are the most revealing interview questions to ask job candidates? Share in the comments!

Subscribe by email