Question Overview: This question is designed to see how applicants handle failure. It's important to note that you don't have to have failed at a project to answer this question. You can discuss a project that was canceled or one that you had to scale back.
Sample Answer: I once had a project that was supposed to be completed in six months. We ended up taking nine months. I was not able to communicate the delays effectively, and the client was upset. I learned that it's important to be honest and transparent with clients. I also learned that it's important to have contingency plans in place in case something goes wrong.
Question Overview: Program managers are responsible for the success of multiple projects. It's important to see if applicants have a long-term vision for their career and how they plan to achieve it.
Sample Answer: I see myself as a program manager with a portfolio of successful projects. I want to be known as a leader who is able to take on new challenges and adapt to change. I want to be able to work with a variety of teams and clients, and I want to continue to grow professionally. In five years, I hope to have moved up in my company and have more responsibility. I want to be able to mentor other program managers and help them develop their careers.
Question Overview: This question tests your ability to make a decision based on data. It's important to understand the difference between qualitative and quantitative data. Qualitative data is subjective and can be difficult to interpret. Quantitative data is objective and easier to understand.
Sample Answer: I would look at the specifications of each MRI machine. I would examine the cost of each machine, the number of MRI scans it can perform per day, the length of time it takes to perform a scan and the cost of maintenance. I would also look at the quality of images produced by each machine. I would examine the resolution, contrast and signal-to-noise ratio. I would also look at the size of each machine and how much space it takes up.
Question Overview: This question asks applicants to explain their analytical thinking and problem-solving skills. It also tests their ability to design a system that prevents click fraud, which is when a user clicks on an ad without buying anything.
Sample Answer: I would start by researching click fraud. I would look at the current system and identify what's working and what's not. I would examine the root causes of click fraud and find ways to prevent it. I would look at the data and identify patterns. For example, I might notice that click fraud is more likely to occur on Mondays or that it's more prevalent on certain types of ads. I would then create a system that prevents click fraud based on these patterns.
Question Overview: This question gives you an opportunity to see how applicants handle difficult situations. Great program managers have the ability to lead teams through tough times and come out on top.
Sample Answer: I once managed a project that was in danger of failing. The client was unhappy with the progress and threatened to cancel the contract. I worked with the project manager to create a plan for improvement. We identified areas for improvement and created a new timeline. We also re-evaluated staffing needs and made changes. We then presented our findings to the client and they agreed to give us one more chance. We were able to deliver on time and within budget, and the client was very pleased with the final product.
Question Overview: This question is designed to see how applicants handle difficult situations. It's important to be honest, but also show how you've overcome your weaknesses.
Sample Answer: I'm a perfectionist. I want everything to be just right. This can be a strength, but it can also be a weakness. I've learned that it's important to let go of the small stuff and focus on the big picture. I've also learned that it's okay to ask for help. I've found that my team is willing to lend a hand when needed.
Question Overview: This question is designed to see if applicants are passionate about their work. It also shows how they think about products and services.
Sample Answer: I love our new product line. I've been working on it for a while now, and I'm excited to see it on the market. The product is a revolutionary new way to manage inventory. It's going to save our customers a lot of time and money. It's also going to make our company more competitive in the marketplace.
Question Overview: This is your chance to sell yourself. Applicants should demonstrate their leadership skills, ability to work on a team, and how they'll make the company more efficient and productive.
Sample Answer: I'm a strong communicator with a proven track record of working in teams. I'm also a creative problem solver with the ability to think outside the box. I've been able to lead teams through change and help them achieve success. I'm also an effective communicator and have experience working with executives. My experience in program management will help me lead your program management team and ensure we're working towards your goals.
Question Overview: This question tests your ability to think on your feet and solve problems. You'll be asked to write code for a B-tree, which is a data structure used to store information.
Sample Answer: I would start by writing a function that takes in a number of nodes and returns the number of nodes in the tree. Next, I would write a function that takes in a node and returns the parent node. Finally, I would write a function that takes in a node and returns the left and right child nodes.
Question Overview: Program managers are responsible for the success of their programs. If a program manager is not getting the results they need, they must be able to identify and address the problem. This question asks applicants to describe how they would handle a situation where project managers are not performing.
Sample Answer: I would first analyze the situation. I would look at the project's progress and determine if there are any issues with scope, budget or staffing. I would then meet with each project manager to discuss their progress. I would also meet with their leads to see if there are any issues that need to be addressed. If I find that the project manager is not meeting expectations, I would meet with them again and discuss ways to improve performance. If the issue is still not resolved, I would meet with their manager and have a candid conversation about the situation.
Question Overview: Customer obsession is a key attribute of great program managers. They are always looking for ways to improve the customer experience and make sure the company is meeting its customers' needs. This question asks applicants to share a time when they were customer-focused and how they achieved success.
Sample Answer: I was working with a team that was developing a new product. We had a beta version ready for testing, but we weren't getting the results we wanted. I decided to go straight to the source and speak with our customers directly. I discovered that our product was too complicated and wasn't meeting their needs. We made some changes, and the product was a success.
Question Overview: Program managers are responsible for the success of multiple projects. This question asks applicants to rank the importance of each project to the company.
Sample Answer: I would rank the records in this order: Project A, Project B, Project C. Project A is our highest priority because it's a new product launch. We need to ensure we're providing a quality product to our customers. Project B is a new website redesign. This project is important because it will increase our customer satisfaction and sales. Project C is a new training program. While this project will improve employee skills, it's not as important as the other two projects because it's not tied directly to revenue generation.
Question Overview: Program managers must be able to solve problems in a variety of ways. This question asks applicants to describe a time they found a simple solution for a complex problem.
Sample Answer: I was working with a team that was struggling to complete a project on time. We had already missed several deadlines and were running out of time. I realized the problem wasn't with the team, but with the project itself. We were trying to do too much at once. I broke down the project into smaller pieces and assigned each piece to a different team. This allowed us to complete each piece on time and meet our overall goal.
Question Overview: Risk management is a process for identifying, analyzing and mitigating potential threats to a project. Great program managers are able to identify risks and make adjustments to ensure projects are successful.
Sample Answer: I always start by identifying potential risks. I then analyze the likelihood of these risks occurring and the impact they would have on the project. I use this information to develop a risk management strategy. I share the strategy with project leads and teams so everyone is aware of potential issues. I also develop a plan for addressing risks. For example, if we're concerned about a team's ability to deliver on time, we might adjust staffing or add resources.
Question Overview: This question tests your ability to think creatively and solve problems. It's a great way to see how you approach challenges and whether you can think outside the box.
Sample Answer: I would design a drone that can fly in any direction. I would start by creating a drone that can hover in place. Then, I would add a propulsion system that allows the drone to move in any direction. I would also add a camera for recording and taking pictures.
Question Overview: This question is designed to see how applicants handle mistakes. Great program managers are able to admit their mistakes and learn from them. They are also able to communicate their mistake and what they learned to others.
Sample Answer: I once made the mistake of not communicating effectively with my team. We were working on a project that was behind schedule and over budget. I was so focused on the details that I didn't realize the team was feeling overwhelmed. I should have been more open about the challenges we were facing and how we were going to overcome them. I learned that it's important to communicate with team members about the big picture, as well as, the details.
Question Overview: Large scale implementations are projects that involve multiple departments and multiple teams. They're often complex and require a lot of coordination. Great program managers are able to manage these projects effectively and ensure they're completed on time and within budget.
Sample Answer: I've managed several large scale implementations in the past. I've learned that it's important to have a clear understanding of the project's scope. You must also have a solid grasp of the company's vision and goals. I work with each project manager to define parameters and milestones. I then create a communication plan to keep everyone on the same page. I also make sure we have a clear understanding of what success looks like. This way, we can identify if changes are needed along the way.
Question Overview: This question is designed to see how applicants think on their feet. It's a good way to see how they approach problems and challenges. Applicants should be able to explain their thought process and how they would solve the problem.
Sample Answer: I would change the way email providers sort messages. I'd like to see a feature that sorts messages by sender, date and subject. This would make it easier for me to find important emails quickly.
Question Overview: Program managers are responsible for overseeing the development of software products. This question asks applicants to think critically about a product they use and how they would improve it.
Sample Answer: I love the way the new version of X software is organized. I think it's a great improvement over the previous version. I would like to see more integration with other software products. I also think it would be helpful if there was a mobile app available.
Question Overview: Program managers are often responsible for overseeing multiple projects at once. This question asks applicants to describe their biggest accomplishments and how they've positively impacted the company.
Sample Answer: I've made a significant impact on our company's bottom line. I've streamlined our processes and improved our efficiency. I've also helped to reduce costs by eliminating defects and reducing rework. I've also increased revenue by improving client satisfaction.