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Working in diverse teams
Working in diverse teams

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2 Competency-based interview questions

During an interview, one of the types of questions an interviewer may use to test competencies is a competency-based interview question You will now look at what is meant by a competency-based interview question and consider what a good answer to this might look like in the light of the knowledge you have built up about working in teams throughout this course so far.

A competency-based question is one that may start with the words

‘Can you give me an example of when you…?’


‘Can you describe a situation where you had to…?’

Employers like to use these types of questions as they are seen to be a good indicator of future behaviour. If the employer gets a sense of what you have done in the past when confronted with that situation, then the thinking is that with this information they can better predict what you might do in the future.

Some examples of competency-based questions which would test your teamwork skills include:

  • Tell me about the most successful team you have ever been part of and what you did to ensure its success.
  • Give me an example of a time when you experienced conflict within a team you were part of.
  • Tell me about a time when you have supported a member of your team who was struggling.

Activity 2 If you were on the spot

Timing: Allow about 5 minutes

Have a look at the three competency-based questions above. Choose one of the questions and consider what you might say in response if you were asked this question in an interview. Note down your thoughts in the box below.

At this time don’t worry too much about what your answer looks like. Just jot down some initial thoughts of the kind of thing you would be likely to say.

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How did you find that? It can be difficult to think of a good example. Don’t worry too much about whether your example is ‘good enough’ as it is the process that you went through that an employer is interested in so any example you can think of will be fine.

Next you will look at how you could demonstrate your teamwork skills in an interview using the STAR strategy.