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Program manager Interview Questions

Program managers are responsible for overseeing several company projects that are connected by a common goal. Employers are looking for candidates who excel at people management and conflict resolution. Interviewers will want to know about your leadership and multitasking skills, so come ready to discuss a time you were able to successfully motivate a group to meet an imminent deadline or any experience diffusing issues between coworkers.

Program manager Interview Questions

Program manager Interview Questions

Program managers are responsible for overseeing several company projects that are connected by a common goal. Employers are looking for candidates who excel at people management and conflict resolution. Interviewers will want to know about your leadership and multitasking skills, so come ready to discuss a time you were able to successfully motivate a group to meet an imminent deadline or any experience diffusing issues between coworkers.

13,375 Program Manager interview questions shared by candidates

Top Program Manager Interview Questions & How to Answer

Here are three top program manager interview questions and how to answer them:

Question #1: What are the warning signs a program might be at risk?

How to answer: Interviewers want to know you can identify and solve problems. When answering this question, explain potential risks to a program, as well as how to eliminate these risks with problem-solving skills.

Question #2: What is the difference between a program manager and a project manager?

How to answer: You want employers to know you have a strong understanding of the job description. If asked this question, explain the key differences between program managers and project managers, including the fact that program managers take a more strategic approach to their position. Go on to explain the strategies you would use if you were hired for the position.

Question #3: How do you keep a program on track?

How to answer: The duties of a program manager include pacing the team, keeping up with deadlines, and solving problems. An interviewer may be interested in how you resolve conflict in the workplace to keep things on track. They may also want to know your planning process, how you stay organized, and how you communicate with team members.

Top Interview Questions

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Kyocera
Senior Program Manager was asked...February 22, 2011

how did you handle people who don't co-operate?

2 Answers

explain why, communicate the bigger picture of what you're asking them to do, show that what you are doing is in full view of process/not a personal thing but a strategic or tactical problem-solving approach. If thats not effective, contact his/her resource manager/boss and ask to be added to the employee's review process. Then let his/her boss tell that person you hold this power... Less

make them owners so that they will be accountable

The Ohio State University

Do you enjoy working with people and are you able to handle people in a problematic situation?

2 Answers

Yes

Problematic, being large, noisy or difficult crowds. As Event Mgr. or Program Super one needs to be able to anticipate & prevent possible problems before they happen or even while they are happening! Less

Nova Management

Examples of my Program Management experience and how/if I was able to positively influence outcome.

1 Answers

Provided specific examples and methods employed to boost communication and manage schedule, successfully completing the various programs cited meeting technical objective & schedule while staying within budget. Less

Tell me why do you think you would be a good manager?

1 Answers

Because i have a natural talent to motivate people and to generate a team work environment Less

REI Systems

When you have a large portfolio of projects under you, how do you know when a project is healthy or at risk? What indicators do you look for? What information do you request from project managers / task leaders, and how do you track it? Follow up question (just as important) -- Give a specific example of what you have done when you have identified a project risk. What was the risk? How did you identify it? What did you do about it?

1 Answers

I won't get into my detailed response here. I covered basics of project health / risk, such as quality, timeliness, budget, scope, staffing, client satisfaction, etc. I talked about anticipating, identifying, and mitigating risks and how to get out in front of risks. I talked about program / project dashboards, simplified reporting tools, taking early action, meetings with clients and PMs/leads, and developing trusting relationships with PMs/leads so that they view me as a partner and resource to help them rather than as a person who is monitoring and judging them. Less

Sprinkles Cupcakes

If your FOH team is low on energy how do you motivate them to do better?

1 Answers

By setting goals in the beginning of the day and reminding the employees how close we are to completing them and reasserting them with positive encouragement. Less

AECOM

What was my management style

1 Answers

Collaborative with goal setting

Amazon

Why Amazon?

26 Answers

It's no surprise that Amazon is the world's leading company in existence, with the highest profile & reputation bar none. I have always dreamt of being in a prestigious company as Amazon, as I know I have alot of to give in looking for thee most efficient ways to resolve any types of problems. I have extensive experience in the Customer care industry, & I can truly say that my life's passion is ensuring I can make people happy with the service I will provide. Less

“I really believe the vision that making Amazon the Earth’s most customer-centric company more than anyone and I wanted to be a part of it on it’s pursuit which is the reason and motivation driving me to join Amazon.” Less

In my previous organization my subordinate left work unfinished. Later I have had attended it with a lot difficulty coz he didn't follow principles for the work. But finally with dedication, hardship job done Less

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Microsoft

Consider a lift lobby where people are waiting for the lift. Now when lift arrives people get in irrespective of who came first. Thus, the person who came first keeps waiting and others keep getting in. Design a lift system which can solve the problem of this person.

16 Answers

I don't find any of the answers posted above by Vikram, Vishnu or Deb as appropriate! @Vikram: Can you increase the size of a lift lobby??? FYI a lift lobby is the space u generally have between an array of lifts located on opposite sides of a wall. Having a narrow path and having a long waiting queue?? Imagine such a situation in an office or a shopping mall or an apartment! and will u demolish an existing building to reinstall this design u are suggesting - who will buy ur design? @Vishnu: Elevator - do u mean escalator? Imagine a 30-40 floor building and and escalator going 30 floors up and down! Think of the time u will have to take to reach the top floor. There can be n types of solution, but it is important to evaluate every solution. we are not suggesting just an alternate solution, but addressing the users problem. I think we are increasing his problem by this design. And also consider the technical feasibility of such design in say 50 floor building? and again will u demolish an existing building to reinstall this design u are suggesting - who will buy ur design? @Deb: Again, we are solving the users problem here and not just suggesting solution for the sake of it. Imagine such a lift system installed in your apartment complex! The camera would know that you are no. 7, how would you know that? not knowing this you will try to enter a lift and then u say that the lift will stop u!!! and there may be 6 lifts in the lobby. Say at a particular instance of time 2 lifts - lift 1 (going down) and lift 4 (going up) arrive. you will not let in person no 10 who wants to go down while all other 9 who came before and wants to go up. And how would the camera know which floor the person wants to go?? I am just giving pointers and this is the way the options will be struck down, if they do not address the actual problem/ or you do not consider the feasibility of implementation. The solution that i gave was this: When one enters a lift lobby first thing he does is to press up or down button to call a lift going up or down respectively. Once we enter a lift we have the keyboard to press the floor number inside the lift. What i suggested is to have a similar keyboard somewhere at the entrance of the lift lobby along with a small embedded display screen. So that when i am entering the lobby i press say 11 (to go to the 11th floor). While i press that, instantly the lobby shows me the lift number (say Lift 1, 2, ..6) i need to get into. So i know which lift i need to get into and i will obviously stand in front of that lift. At any time, the same lift number will not be issued to more than X people (where X is a predefined number of persons who can go in a lift at a time). Here the design is not in reinventing the entire lift system. Nobody will incur so much real estate cost to scrap the existing lift system and build a totally new designed one! The actually design here would be to build the backend logic that the lift system would use to assign the right lift number to every arriver in the most efficient way. e.g. Assume a simple start state (for a 2 lift lobby) when all lifts are stationary at the ground floor. When P1 (going to F10) comes System assigns him L1. For P2 (F5) assigns L2. Now to P3 (F12) assign L1, P4(F11) assign L1, P5(F4) assign L2 and so on. This is a simple situation. All we need is an algorithm which can address this lift assignment in the most efficient way. I WAS SELECTED :) Less

Have a two way door opening in the lift. But always entry should be in one side and exit other side. Less

Sorry for my previous response. Wrongly understood the question

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Microsoft

You are on a game show. There are three doors, behind one of which is a prize and the other two is a chunk of coal, and the host knows which door holds the prize. You choose door #1. Before it is opened, the host opens door #3 and reveals a lump of coal. You have the choice to stick with the door you chose originally or switch to door #2. What do you do?

17 Answers

Interview Candidate and Anonymous are right. This is also known as the Monte Hall problem Less

Your choice splits the doors in two sets. Set A contains the door you selected, and the probability that is a prize behind this door is 1/3. The set B contains all remaining doors, and the probability that the winning door is somewhere in there is 2/3. By removing one door, which all have the success probability of zero because there's coal behind them, from set B, only one door remains in B, but the overall probability for success in set B is still 2/3. Therefore you must switch. Less

Interview candidate is right. You got 1/3 chance that prize is behind door #1 and you lose if you switch. And you got 2/3 chance that prize is behind either door #2 or #3. Since the host will always eliminate the wrong one. 2/3 chance will be allocated on the left one. Less

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