Prepare for a tough interview. Many behavioral questions, some brain teasers. Personality test or an IQ test is also not uncommon in the interviews for this prestigious corporate role. You will have to demonstrate strong knowledge of the field of business. Excellent analytical and process management skills are essential, and will be tested.
What is more, you will often interview with the CEO, or some other top executive from the company (unless you apply for this job with one of the management consultancies, who specialize in providing advice to managers from other companies). Typically you’ll interview in front of a panel, and one of the guys will be the CEO of the company.
These people know what they are doing, they understand the challenges they face in business, and know exactly what they should ask you to test your readiness for the job of management a analyst. Ready? Let’s have a look at some questions!
Why do you think you can be a good management analyst?
Some interviewers will start with a typical chit-chat. They will ask you to walk them through your resume, or they will even start with a typical “Tell me about yourself” question. CEO, or senior executives, won’t typically waste any time though. They will come straight to the point, asking you why you think you can excel in this job.
My recommendation is to show confidence. Tell them about your past experience (with managing the business, with project or process management, with financial and management analysis). You should also say that you know the industry well, understand the common pitfalls, and believe to be able to tell the things that separate the winners from the losers.
Lastly, you can refer to your education, and theoretical knowledge of financial analysis, accounting, statistics, management and other fields that will be useful in this job.
Why do you want to work for us, and not for one of our competitors?
Management analyst (or consultant) does not belong to common job titles. It is difficult to find a vacancy in any smaller city, and once you finally discover something on one of the job boards, you probably didn’t care much about the person or business who advertises the offer.
When interview for a job, however, you should convince them that you know perfectly well what you are doing, that you did not apply by an accident. For example, if they are no. 2. or no. 3. on a local market, you can tell them that you want to help them to get to that coveted first spot. And if they happen to dominate the market, tell them that you are interested to help them keep their dominance.
But you can relate also to other things: the final products of the company (you like them or see potential in them), their values and goals, their mission statement (for sure they want to save the world, so why not jump onboard), or basically anything else that resonates with you.
Praise them. Say nice worlds about their business. Find things you have in common. All of this will help you to create the right atmosphere in the interview.
If we hire you for this job, what will be the first thing you will do?
Buy a new car, pocket of Cuban cigars, and head for an extended weekend to one of the Caribbean islands. Wait. They are asking what you will do in the job. A great option is to say that you will talk to each and single manager in the company (within the reach of your position, of course), face to face, one on one. Then you will call financial analysts to your office, and also other people from financial department.
Making notes on these meetings, and later studying the financial reports, should help you to come up with a basic idea of the recommendations you will make to the managers. Of course this is just a start, the first step….
Special Tip: You can also download the list of questions in a one page .PDF document, print it, and practice your interview answers anytime later:
Our profits have been falling the last three years. Why do you think it has happened? How would you try to identify the reasons for our decline?
In most interviews you will get at least one question of this type. They will complain about something that’s not going well, or at least not as well as they expected. After all, if everything went right, they would not advertise a vacancy for a management analyst…
The good answer to this question depends on the particular situation. Most of the time you will need to see the numbers for the previous years, do some market research and competition analysis, to be able to draw any conclusion. If you prepared for your interview, however, if you did your homework and spent hours studying the company and the industry they’re in, you may have some ideas.
Try to present them in a polite way. Remember that one of the highest executives sits across the table. Do not say anything that may insult them, or touch them emotionally.
How do you feel about dismissing someone, or recommending a dismissal?
Management analysts enjoy various levels of responsibility in various companies. Some of them have the power to dismiss members of lower management, some do not. But they all can make a recommendation–to promote someone who deserves it, or to dismiss someone who does not deserve to work for the company.
This position is pretty much result driven, and you should be ready to put your emotions aside. Tell the interviewers that you keep the goals of the business your first priority, and won’t let the emotions to affect you in work.
Said in simple words, you can say that you would not mind recommending a dismissal of your colleague, if you considered it right for the business.
* Do not forget to check also: How to overcome interview nerves – Learn how to get rid of stress and deliver your best in a job interview.
Describe a time when you struggled to communicate something to your boss, or colleague. How did you manage to get your message over?
You’ll work with people of all intelligence levels in your job. And some of them may have very little understanding of financial terminology, or other things you’ll talk about.
But to get the message over is absolutely crucial in this job. Unless the managers understand 100% clearly what you suggest them to do, how can they follow your suggestions?
Tell the interviewers that you are ready (and happy to) step out of your comfort zone, change your language according to the person you’ll talk to, and even use pictures, charts, and other methods of demonstration while trying to get your message over.
Describe a time when you struggled to build a relationship with someone important. How did you eventually overcome that?
Another crucial thing in this job is trust. Many managers do not like analysts and consultants, since they do not like when someone tells them what they should do. And this is exactly a model situation you should refer to in your answer.
What helps to build trust? Definitely good listening skills will help you. Good results you’ve achieved will help as well.
But more important than anything else is the understanding of the very basic needs and desires of human heart–recognizing your colleagues for the work they have done, and trying to make a good connection with them, on a personal level. Tell the interviewing panel how you managed to do this in the past.
Other questions you may get in your management analyst interview
- Why do you consider leaving your present job?
- Tell us about a time when you used logic to solve a problem.
- What motivates you the most in this work?
- Describe a situation when you felt overwhelmed with work.
- What are your greatest weaknesses as a consultant?
- Where do you see yourself in five years from now?
- Describe a situation when you reached a goal and tell us how you achieved it.
- Describe a conflict you had with your colleague, and how you addressed it.
- Tell us about the best project you’ve ever managed.
- Describe a situation when you were under pressure in work.
- Why should we hire you, and not one of the other job applicants?
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Interview for a job of a Management Analyst belongs to difficult job interviews. The job title normally attracts dozens of applications, and the interview process is typically complex. You will have to deal with many scenario-based questions, and demonstrate both your knowledge of the field, and right attitude to all sorts of situations that can happen in this job.
Try to prepare an answer for each question from my list. And do not forget to do a throughout research about your future place of work. The more you know about them, the easier it will be to connect with the managers in the interviews. Personal preferences always play some role, and you should not neglect their importance.
I hope you will manage to succeed, and wish you good luck!
May also interest you:
- Financial analyst interview questions.
- Management interview questions – Low level, mid level, and top-level management interview questions. Supervisory and marketing manager positions are also included in the selection.
- Consulting interview questions.