Interview Questions for Developing Others and Teams

When interviewing candidates, you’re assessing them for a myriad of skills and traits. To start designing an effective interview, you can use these behavioral interview question examples to build out your interview questions and process.

However, to discover how adept candidates are at developing their own skills and the skills of team mates, you need questions designed to reveal their self and team development skills.

The questions below will help you identify how skilled candidates are at maintaining and growing their skill levels and the skill levels of their teammates.

Interview Questions for Developing Yourself, Others, and Teams

Self and team development is an important focus for fast-growing companies. You want employees that will be motivated to develop themselves and take the initiative to develop others on the team.

Interview Questions for Self-Development

The example questions below are great for identifying if potential employees have the initiative and motivation to develop themselves.

Using these interview questions, you’ll learn about different areas they’ve grown in, and their processes for developing themselves and their skills.

  • In the last year, what skills have you learned to make your job easier? How did you start learning these skills and how did you take them to their current level?
  • Have you ever been in a role that required you to learn new skills? What were they?
  • What do you think is an area you need to keep growing in professionally?
  • What are new skills you hope to learn over the next 6 months?
  • Are there any apps/programs/websites you regularly use to stay current on industry knowledge/skills?
  • If your manager asks you to complete or do a task/project and you don’t know how to do it, what do you do?
  • Tell me about a time when you were asked to do something you didn’t know how to do. What steps did you take to understand / complete the task? Did you ask for outside help? If so, who? What was the outcome?
  • Have you ever wanted to expand or change your role? What skills were required to do this? Have you taken steps toward learning these skills?
  • Have you ever had to learn new skills in preparation for or in anticipation of a promotion?

Interview Questions for the Development of Others

Employees that can act as mentors or help to onboard new hires within their department are extremely valuable, and you want to identify these candidates from the start.

These interview questions are great for identifying candidates who are skilled at developing / training other employees.

  • Have you ever mentored a new hire / intern / or other member of your team? If so, how did you ensure they learned what you were teaching?
  • Tell me about a time where you had to train someone on your team? Why did you have to train them? How did you balance the time requirements of training with other work?
  • Have you ever had to train someone from a different department on how to use/do something that you were an expert in? What was your strategy for training them? What was the outcome?
  • Have you ever had to onboard new hires to your team? How did you ensure they were up to speed as quickly as possible?
  • Do you enjoy training new hires? Why or why not?
  • Do you enjoy mentoring team members? Why or why not?

Interview Questions for Team Development

Great hires looking to take on leadership roles will want to contribute to the development of their team.

These interview questions are tailored to reveal the types of teams that your new hire likes to work in and build.

  • Do you prefer to work as part of a team that is primarily autonomous? Why or why not?
  • Can you describe one of your favorite teams that you’ve been a part of? What made this team your favorite? How would you replicate or improve this type of team at our company?
  • What was the worst functioning team that you’ve been a part of? What made it challenging to work as part of this team? What would you do differently to make this team function better and/or be more enjoyable to work in?
  • What does your ideal team look like? Describe roles, collaboration tools and communication practices used.
  • What do you think is more important for a team: technical skills or communication? Why?
  • What type of employee development program would you put in place to help your team gain/improve skills?
  • Would you rather give your team the opportunity to gain new skills or hire a new employee for those skills?
  • Describe your ideal process for hiring and onboarding new team members?
  • How would you handle a member of your team who is not performing well?
  • How would you handle a member of your team who is having communication issues with other team members?

Final thoughts: Interview questions for developing others and teams

As you know, building a high performing, adaptable team can be a challenge. Your company will have constant needs to fill vacancies on teams and will require employees who are able to learn or gain new skills along the way. Using the above interview questions can help you discover which candidates are great self-starters, and those who are motivated to help grow and develop other members of the team.

Check out some of our other interviewing tools such as this interview guide, and these interview questions for executives and leaders to further help you identify candidates that would be a great fit to lead your company.