Manager Interview Questions

Interview questions for managers are used to identify, test and measure the candidate’s managerial capabilities, experience and knowledge. Discover the best examples of the interview questions for managers that will help you evaluate your candidates’ management skills!

Want to Unlock the Secrets of Job Interviews?
Conducting job interviews is a critical task that requires preparation, structure, and a clear understanding of what you are looking for in a candidate.
Start evaluating candidates


➡️ Before we dig deeper into the interview questions for managers, don't forget to download The Ultimate Candidate Interview & Employee Onboarding Checklist!

The importance of hiring a good manager

According to the Harvard Business Review, Gallup has found that companies fail to choose the candidate with the right talent for the job 82% of the time.

Since managers are responsible for guiding teams to successfully deliver important business results on time, bad managers have a direct impact on the company's bottom line and revenues. Bad managers can drive away your talent and cost businesses billions of dollars each year.

This is why it is extremely important for every company to be able to successfully attract, select and hire greats manager for all its open managerial job positions.  

Check out our Tips for recruiting executives

What do interview questions for managers test?

Interview questions for managers are used to identify, test and measure candidate’s management capabilities, experience and knowledge.

Asking interview questions for managers will help you select the candidates with the best people and leadership skills. Management interview questions are created in order to test job candidates abilities to lead, support and motivate their teams.

According to Google’s research based on data analysis, there are 8 characteristics of highly effective managers. Great management interview questions will help you assess all of these traits in your job candidates for managerial positions.

Job positions to use management interview questions for

You should use interview questions for managers every time you are looking for a perfect candidate to fill your senior level job positions (e.g. team leaders and managers).

Ask management interview questions for positions such as Project Manager, Product Manager, Social Media Manager, Operations Manager, HR Manager, IT Managers, Chief Administrative Officer, Chief Marketing Officer (CMO), Chief Operating Officer (COO) and Chief Technology Officer or any other managerial position.


Examples of the best interview questions for managers

Here is the list of the top 10 job interview question examples for managers.

Asking these 10 interview questions will ensure that you’re addressing all the crucial characteristics, traits and soft skills that make a great manager.

Management style interview questions

In order to discover the management style of your managerial candidates, aks these 2 job interview questions:

  • Please describe your management style in 3 words.
  • What do you think is more important: Achieving your goals or being liked by your team?

Management experience interview questions

In order to assess the management experience of your managerial candidates, aks these 2 job interview questions:

  • How long have you been a manager?
  • How many people have you managed so far in your career?

Leadership interview questions

In order to evaluate the leadership skills of your managerial candidates, aks these 2 job interview questions:

  • In your experience, what is the key to developing a good team?
  • What would you do if a member of a team you lead would refuse to follow your instructions?

Problem-solving interview questions

In order to examine the problem-solving aptitude of your managerial candidates, aks these 2 job interview questions:

  • Give me an example of a time when a person in your team was performing poorly. What did you do?
  • What would you do if you have a project deadline set for tomorrow and your team informs you that they won’t be able to finish the job on time?

Motivational personality interview questions

In order to rank your managerial candidates based on their ability to motivate others, aks these 2 job interview questions:

  • What strategies do you use to motivate your team?
  • As a manager, do you reward people for hard work or achieved results?

How to use these interview questions for managers?

In order to ensure fairness and objectiveness of your interviewing process, you should follow these 6 steps:

  1. Make a final list of a fixed set of interview questions for managers you will ask your candidates.
  2. Develop a rating system prior to interviewing your first candidate. 
  3. Follow your list during the interview and ask all your managerial job candidates the same questions, preferably in the same order.
  4. Make sure you take notes of your candidates’ answers during the interview.
  5. After the interview, go through your notes and score each of your candidates’ answer.
  6. Finally, compare the top 3 candidates and select the best one.

Looking for more questions to ask your candidates in an interview?

If you’re looking for more great interview questions to ask your candidates for managerial positions, browse our list of interview questions by type.

Make sure you also check out our Complete guide for asking candidates the best interview questions. 🙂

Ultimate Guide for Conducting Job Interviews

Do you use a modern recruitment software? If not, you're missing out. See how your life can be easier. Start your free 14-day TalentLyft trial.

Start my free trial