How Do You Handle Conflict Interview Questions?

how do you handle conflict interview questions

Conflict interview questions can be one of the most difficult to answer during a job interview. They require that you show the less glamorous side of your work experience, and it might be uncomfortable for you to talk about some of the unpleasant experiences you’ve had at work. But if this is done well, it’s a great opportunity to shine. 

Employers ask conflict-related questions to gauge your ability to handle disagreements quickly and professionally. This helps them gain insight into your temperament and ability to take on challenges that go beyond your daily work tasks.

Common Conflict-Related Interview Questions

When answering a question related to any type of conflict, it’s important to demonstrate your capacity to identify the underlying problem and address it objectively–this means you are capable of taking ownership of your role in resolving the issue.

To make sure you’re ready for challenging questions, we’ve selected several of the most common interview questions with answers about conflict to help you prepare.

“Can You Tell Us How You Handle Conflict?”

“I believe I handle conflict well, and I understand it’s a part of professional life. In conflict situations, I try to find a mutual resolution that suits the needs of the team, so as not to put my own interests first. I know that sensitivities can run high, so I act intentionally and mindfully.”

This is a succinct response to a general question which shows you are comfortable with the question and a confident employee, and would be a great way to introduce yourself at an interview in the early stages. In such a scenario, you might receive a more specific follow-up question about how to manage specific instances of conflict.

“Have You Ever Had a Disagreement While Working in a Team? How Did You Deal With It?”

“Let me start by saying that I love collaborating in a team dynamic. Conflicts can arise, especially if the employees are passionate about what they do. I operate with a curiosity-based mindset to conflict to maintain an objective point of view, and also see room for growth. One example is… ”

This answer showcases your ability to value your peers’ concerns and are able to implement solutions which benefit them, while not sacrificing the greater needs of the project at hand.

“Have You Ever Had a Situation Where You’ve Had a Disagreement With a Senior Staff Member? Can You Tell Us About It?”

“On one occasion, my manager told me that I was going to have to work late one evening per week as part of a collective effort to improve sales. I believed this should be performance-related, so I asked my manager if this could be related to revenue generated per individual. My manager agreed this was a good idea and this system was implemented not only for me, but for everyone in the team.”

This response shows employers that you are able to think of solutions and turn a conflict into a better situation for the workers and the company. It also showcases your ability to handle conflict even with senior staff members.

In Conclusion

Showing you are able to deal with conflict shows character, maturity, and critical thinking skills that are extremely valuable to employers. Don’t worry about questions concerning conflict, but think about how you can answer them to showcase your assertiveness and diplomacy skills. You must also make sure there is no reason you are not getting interviews by having an outstanding CV and knowing that you are ready for the questions you’ll be asked.

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