Last updated on January 10th, 2020 at 11:07 am

Degree from civil engineering, and previous experience as construction supervisor or field superintendent plays a big role in this interview. If you have both of them, the success and a new job contract is not far away…

Experience notwithstanding, you will have to make a good impression, demonstrate your readiness for the job, and answer the questions for the hiring managers. Let’s have a look at some questions.


Tell us something about your experience in the field

Young manager is smiling before his interview with a construction companyAny relevant experience is a good experience. Talk about time when you coordinated or supervised building of all types of residential, commercial, and industrial structures, roads, bridges, power plants, schools, and hospitals.

Even when you only supervised a bunch of workers on a small construction site, and talked two or three times with architects and building engineers in the process, you actually gained a relevant experience for a construction manager.

When going through your resume, do not forget to stress the successful completion of building projects you worked on, and your role in the project.

The key is to present yourself as a skilled manager, who understands the ins and outs of the job.


How do you imagine your typical day in work, if we hire you?

Job description should help you to understand the basic duties you’ll respond for. Tell them that you do not plan to spend all days in your comfortable office.

Speak about going to the construction site, supervising the supervisors, talking to workers, and keeping a constant and close contact with all important members of the team.

That’s the attitude they look for in a perfect candidate for the job.


When managing a building project, what do you consider the most important thing for success of the building?

A manager interviews for a job in an international corporation.You can approach this question from a variety of angles. Good approach is saying that everything matters, from the first draft to the last brick, and you do not really consider something pivotal.

Then you can elaborate on your answer and say that you plan to oversee each step carefully, since each step matters.

Another option is focusing on planning. The right plan, including both people and materials, is crucial for every success.

Third good option consists in talking about human resources. Each great building is a team effort. Some of the best building managers excel in one thing only: hiring right people to their team, and motivating them in a right way, to work as a team, and to deliver their best.


If we hire you, you will manage this or that building. Knowing a bit about the project, what do you consider the biggest challenges you will face?

Obviously, the right answer differ from one project to another. However, the right attitude is always the same. Show them that you are aware of the challenges, that you do not close your eyes.

Tell them how you plan to approach the challenge, and speak about it without fear, or hesitation. Many building projects came to grief becasue their leaders could not overcome the challenges. And it can happen to everyone. But you should not be afraid of the challenges while talking to the hiring managers.

Special Tip: Download a full list of questions in a simple one-page long .PDF, and practice your interview answers anytime later:

interview questions for managers at construction site, in pdf


Describe a situation when you were under pressure in work.

The most common pressure building managers experience is meeting a final deadline. In reality, more than half of buildings will not meet the original schedule, and the managers are not always to blame. Sometimes the plan doesn’t work out, sometimes the weather halts the plans.

The key is to show the hiring managers that you do not crack under pressure, can prioritize your work, and have an ability to motivate your subordinates to work harder. You should demonstrate all of that while narrating a situation from the past, one when you had to meet a tight deadline, or faced some other form of pressure.


Describe a time when you struggled to communicate something to your colleague, subordinate, or to a customer. How did you manage to get your message over?

Small panel of young interviewers put the job candidate under a lot of pressure. You’ll work with people of various levels of IQ, and various fields of expertise. It may easily happen that the two of you won’t understand each other.

You, as a leading figure in the project, and as someone with the right attitude to work, should be the one who steps out of his comfort zone.

Tell the hiring managers about a situation when you changed your language, simplified it, or used demonstration, pictures, charts and other tools, to get your message over. It doesn’t necessarily have to be the situation you experienced in work. Your attitude matters the most to the interviewers, not the particular situation you narrate.


Other questions you may get in your construction manager interview

  • Describe a difficult decision you had to make in your professional career. How did making this decision affect you?
  • Tell us about your biggest failure in construction business.
  • Describe a time when you experienced a conflict of your personal and professional interests. How did you get over it?
  • Describe a situation when you had to motivate someone in work (your colleague, your subordinate).
  • Why do you think you can become a good construction manager?
  • How long do you want to have this job?
  • Why did you leave your last job/ Why do you plan to leave your present job?
  • Describe a conflict you had with your colleague.
  • Why should we hire you, and not one of the other applicants?


Conclusion and next steps

Construction manager is a great position that offers a variety of working duties, and interesting starting salary. And while the job title doesn’t belong to the most popular jobs in the US, you will typically compete with one or two other people for the job.

Experience (and your ability to speak about it in a right way) is often decisive. But you can also help your chances with good answers to interview questions, demonstrating right attitude to work, and readiness for the job. We hope that our article will help you to succeed.

And if you are not sure yet, you can continue your preparation with one of the following articles:

  • Body language in an interview – What do your gestures and movements say about you? Can we control our non-verbal communication?
  • Interview Success Package – Great answers to thirty most common interview questions, and a guide on how to impress the hiring managers. Paid product designed for people who want to stand out in the interview.
  • Work portfolio for an interview – Learn how to prepare a selection of your best works, and how to use it to show the interviewers the value you can bring to their team.

Matthew Chulaw
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