Top 21 Team lead and Leadership Interview Questions with Examples:
Now a day’s every employer is looking for the employees with strong and efficient leadership skills. Leadership is nothing but influencing others by his/her behavior and motivating them to follow the right path to achieve the goals in their career.
Management is the main skill which organizations are looking into. It is just only a component of Leadership.
Generally, management skills deal with planning, organizing and controlling the activities of an organization. But Leadership skills include the ability to listen, inspire and encourage, helping others to develop and grow in their career, assigning the responsibility and making decisions.
As a leader, one should not only share his views and ideas with the team instead he should be ready to change his ideas or accept any suggestions from others. If he does so he will be more successful in achieving his goals.
Recommended read => Leadership in Testing
What You Will Learn:
Good Leadership Interview Questions
Recommended read => QA Lead interview questions
How to Answer Interview questions about leadership?
Q #1) Differentiate team leader and team manager?
Ans) A Manager handles the everyday jobs and responsibilities of his team members and also ensures that they complete their assigned work on time. Whereas a Leader will encourage and inspire his/her team to finish and work out their goals.
Q #2) Define a difficult and important task of a Leader?
Ans) The role of a leader involves two duties. As a leader, he should act as a team member and simultaneously he should act as an individual to drive the whole team.
A leader should ensure that all his team-mates are on the same path towards the end goal which in turn leads to organizational success.
Q #3) How will you guide your team to improve or develop their individual skills?
Ans) As a leader I will suggest my team members attend any training, workshops on soft skills, behavioral courses to improve or strengthen their interpersonal skills and other talents.
Q #4) What is the motivation for your leadership? As a leader how will you measure your success?
Ans) A Leader gets motivated by his/her team’s achievements like team-mates finishing their targets, achieving their professional as well as personal goals etc.
Obviously, a leader’s success lies in his/her team member’s success.
Q #5) When you come across any bad news then how will you put it in front of your team?
Ans) To deliver any bad news with the team, I will arrange a small meeting with the team and deliver it. Will try to explain all the possible solutions that need to be implemented in the near future so that such mistakes cannot take place.
At last, will ask my team to share their views, ideas, concerns or any suggestions that can be carried out in the next activity to avoid such situations.
Q #6) What is your approach when you are not clear about achieving your goals on time?
Ans) As a leader you should be ready to accept any comments or opinions from your team. And should not hesitate to seek help from your immediate superiors or your team-mates.
Taking all the inputs into account, you should come up with a new and clear agenda on how to finish your target on time.
Q #7) How will you encourage your team by sharing the other team member’s success?
Ans) Praising one’s success in front of others will inspire and motivate them to work harder. It encourages and gives confidence to others to perform better. One who gets succeeded in their career should be rewarded.
As a leader, if we link the performance of a team member to any reward or recognition, then it motivates them to work harder.
Q #8) Is there any strong or unique skill in you that makes me hire you?
Ans) My career objective is to serve a professionally managed company and achieve a challenging position by utilizing my abilities developed through my experience and education and contribute to enhancing the goals of the company. This makes you
This makes you hire me into your organization.
Q #9) Are you comfortable with group discussions/meetings or one on one?
Ans) As a leader I prefer group discussions because in a group we will be able to know the individual skills and hidden qualities of the team-mates. This can help everyone to improve their interpersonal skills. And as a whole, it will lead to the success of the team.
Q #10) Explain your strength and weakness as a leader?
Ans) Being a leader one should maintain a strong relationship with the team members and should focus on their goals. Simultaneously a leader should inspire and encourage his/her team to work hard and give their best. If a team performs well in the project, then it shows the strength of a leader who is leading the respective team.
Simultaneously a leader should inspire and encourage his/her team to work hard and give their best. If a team performs well in the project, then it shows the strength of a leader who is leading the respective team.
Even though a leader is capable of finishing a task on his own, he should distribute that particular task among the team. If a leader did not do so, then he will end up with a lot of work on himself and cannot complete the task on time.This can be considered as leader’s weakness.
This can be considered as leader’s weakness.
Q #11) What is over supervision in your view as a leader? How will it affect an employee?
Ans) Over Supervision is nothing but when a person is given with more direction than what he needs. When an employee is under such situation, they get frustrated and angry.
They stop trying and taking risks. They stop making decisions on their own, and their participation and initiation come down.
Q #12) What will be the situation when an employee is under supervised?
Ans) Under supervision is nothing but giving directions to an employee in a coaching pattern when he is in need of some direction and close supervision. When people are in such situation, they fail because they did not get the proper guidance which they need and gets frustrated.
Q #13) What will be the situation if a leader’s supervision and an employee’s working style gets matched?
Ans) When the Leadership style and development level of the subordinate get matched, then there will be a win-win situation. Employee or subordinate should not feel that someone else’s loss is their win or that their win is someone else’s loss.
Q #14) How will you assist your subordinates based on their competency and commitment levels?
Ans) A leader should provide his subordinate what they cannot provide for themselves.
- For an employee with Low Competence or High Commitment, the leader should provide direction and the subordinate provides his own eagerness and support.
- For an employee with Some Competence or Low Commitment, the leader should provide direction along with motivation and encouragement.
- For an employee with Moderate-High Competence or Variable Commitment, the leader should provide support and encouragement because that particular team member is self-directive, but his assurance is low on one aspect.
- For an employee with High Competence or High Commitment, the leader should delegate the responsibility for task achievement to the team member.
Note: Competency deals with Knowledge and Training Skills. Commitment deals with Self Confidence and Self Motivation.
Leadership does not mean “Different types of guidance for different employees”, it also means that “Different types of instructions for the same employees, based on the job”.
Q #15) What are the four different leadership styles and brief them?
Ans) Generally the Leadership styles differ in three ways: the amount of direction provided by the leader, the amount of support and encouragement given by the leader, and the involvement of an employee in decision making.
- DIRECTING: This is described as one-way communication. The leader will define the roles and goals, guiding the employee what, when, how, with whom, and where to carry out the task. The leader initiates the Problem-solving and decision making. Resolutions and conclusions are announced, and a job is closely observed by the leader.
- COACHING STYLE: This is a two-way communication. The leader assigns the task to the employee and also motivates, encourages, praises the employee’s views on how to proceed with the task. Even though the leader approaches the employee, decision-making and problem-solving are up to the leader.
- SUPPORTING: In this style, both the leader and the employee identify the problem together and will set the goals. Problem-solving and decision-making shifts between them. The employee will share his view on how to proceed with the job. Then the leader provides any assurance or support, resources etc if needed.
- DELEGATING: In this style, the employee and the leader jointly define the problem and goals. The employee prepares the plan about when, how and with whom the task should be done. A leader will monitor the employee’s performance periodically.
In a Leadership interview, you will be more focused on the scenario type questions.
Like, you will be given a scenario and will be asked to give your explanation or views against the same. And you will be judged based on your perception towards the answer.
Here are few scenario-based questions for the interview
Scenario 1) You have asked one of your team members to prepare a report for a newly added requirement into your current project. Usually, he completes the task assigned to him on time with encouragement from you. However, this time his report is overdue.
Q #16) How would you handle this situation?
Ans) You tell him what you are expecting from him and when you want the report to be completed. But discuss with him regarding the reason for not preparing the report on time. Apart from that, you need to keep track on his performance daily.
Scenario 2) Recently, you have been facing a problem with one of your team member. He became lazy and exhausted. Your constant follows up has brought task completion. Because of such experience with him, you suspect that he is not capable of completing a high-priority task.
Q #17) How will you overcome such situation?
Ans) As a leader I will involve him in Problem-Solving with the task and offer support to him. And will try to utilize his ideal in the task completion. Apart from this, I’ll try to draw out his attitudes and feelings concerning this task assignment.
Scenario 3) One of your senior employees is assigned with a new job which is important to your team in near future. Even though he is excited about the new job, he has no experience with the task.
Q #18) How will you motivate him to take up the task and proceed further?
Ans) I will discuss the job with him by defining the necessary activities to proceed with it, supporting his ability to do the task. And highlight his outstanding performance in the past. Ask him to share his views on the new job so that they can be implemented.
Scenario 4) A highly productive and efficient member of your team has asked for your help on a task. He is familiar to work effectively on his own but some work hurdles have discouraged him to solve the task by himself.
Q #19) How will you solve his problem and make him comfortable to work?
Ans) I will try to analyze the problems and outline the methods to solve them. Finally, I will help him to determine and implement an appropriate solution to resolve the task on his own.
Scenario 5) A new employee has been assigned to your team to perform a new assignment. He is excited and confident enough to accept the task but he has no experience in that job or task.
Q #20) How will you deal with that new employee?
Ans) First of all I’ll welcome him into the team and will explain him all the details regarding the new task and will tell him what the job demands from him. As a leader will guide him how to proceed with the task. I will also convey him that what is the expectation on him and will monitor his work frequently and closely.
Scenario 6) Recently you have been appointed as head of a department. Under former HOD’s supervision, the team functioned satisfactorily with his encouragement and support. Since you have taken the authority, the team’s performance has come down.
Q #21) How will you identify their problem and suggest a solution for it?
Ans) Immediately I will call for a team meeting and discussion regarding the team’s low performance and will suggest the possible solutions overcome those difficulties. Will also support their efforts to indicate any corrective actions. At last, will ask for any inputs and suggestion from the team.
Here are few tips to empower your subordinates as a leader:
- Should encourage your subordinates when they do not expect it and when they are not asking for it.
- An individual who tries and fails in any job can be complimented for having the courage to try.
- Mistakes made by any employee can be treated as learning opportunities instead of blaming them. But ensure that this should not happen all the time.
- Few employees who think that they have to do things perfectly are often afraid to attempt for fear of making mistakes. Such people should be encouraged and given support.
This article is useful for those who are attending an interview for lead or manager positions.
Leadership skills are very much needed for every individual. Even a person applied for entry level jobs should be able to answer the leadership questions in the interview. As he moves ahead in his career, one day he will reach some manager level and he needs leadership skills.
Also read => Test Lead Leadership Interview Questions
In the above article, there are some scenario-based questions which will help you to clear the interview easily.