Sample Questionnaire

Assessing Candidate through proper questioning to understand his thoughts at the time of recruitment

Almost all the time during interview process, interviewers / organizations focus on discussing topics written by candidates in their CVs, like Education / Upbringing / Experience / General Awareness etc. Surprisingly limited attention and focus is given to assess ‘competencies’ needed for the job in question. More-so, there are important elements like ‘value alignment’, candidates thought process with regard to various aspects of job etc.

We have prepared below a set of questions to get a ‘direction’ from the candidate on his thought alignment with respect to them matching companies ‘core values’.

For value alignment to be company (applicants having similar beliefs as the core value of the company), prospective candidates could be probed on following questions. Below are some obvious benefits of this exercise:

–       Can provide added perspective on a candidate about his/her deeply held beliefs

–       Added input to determine his/ her chances of gelling into the organizational culture

–       Helps in smooth induction and assimilation into a work team as the receiving manager/ team now understands the new incumbent holistically

–       Reduces the chances of ‘values mismatch’ at the very onset helping the organization save on potential rehiring cost & time

Interview Questions

3-5 questions have been designed for each of the core values for example if the core values are:

  • Entrepreneurship
  • Innovation
  • Excellence
  • Personal dignity
  • Integrity
  • Collaboration

Questions are mixed- some direct while others indirect; some expecting the candidate to share from past experiences while others asking them to put themselves in a situation and share how they would respond to these

Some questions would push the employee to take a stand- these typically would push an employee to share some deep rooted beliefs

This is not the only tool for determining suitability of the candidate; it is meant to be used as a tool for gaining additional perspective

The interviewer should be self-aware and avoid bringing his/her own beliefs and values into play while making an assessment; focus should remain on alignment sought with organizational values




Share with us a particularly difficult life/ workplace situation you encountered in the recent past. Share with us the choices you made to address the challenges and the rationale behind each of the decisions taken

Share your thoughts with us on the following statement(s)

It is fine to act and fail sometimes in life/ at work rather than choosing to be safe and succeed most times

Processes and procedures are a hindrance many times as they come in the way of getting things done at workplace

In a situation where the customer is not happy with results it is OK to go beyond stated and accepted norms/ boundaries of the team



Share with us an instance at workplace where a breakthrough idea generated by you helped the team achieve results/ move forward when they were stuck

Share your thoughts with us on the following statement(s)

Creativity cannot be inculcated/ taught; one is either born with a creative streak or it is absent; in other words one cannot train oneself or others to be more creative

Ever- changing customer needs, requirements and specifications sometimes are a great nuisance to good planning and organizing work in teams

Changing project scope/ instructions from management poses a hurdle to established structure, process and procedures in project teams


Share with us an achievement in your personal/ professional life which you are extremely proud of having accomplished. What attributes do you think contributed to this success?

Share with us something which you are really passionate about/ a cause you hold dearly to your heart. What have you done to further the cause/ passion in the past couple of years?

Share your thoughts with us on the following statement(s)

Your manager asks you to push yourself and get the job done but overlook some process guidelines which according to him do not really matter much in the larger scheme of things

Personal Dignity

Share with us your thoughts on the following statement(s)

Making accommodation for women employees at different times is not being fair to other colleagues in the team

All cannot be treated equally in a team/ organization as each employee makes different levels of contribution to the stated objectives/ goals

Sales/ Engineering teams should be paid higher than other departments as they contribute way more to the organization’s success


Share with us a situation from personal/ work life wherein you experienced a clash between your personal and organization’s values. How did you go about resolving this?

Share with us an example from the workplace where there was a thin line between ethical & non ethical conduct. What did you do in this situation?

You notice that while your performance assessments have been fine, some other members in the team are not getting fair work allocation/ work assessment. What would you do in such a situation?

Share with us your thoughts on the following statement(s)

Your manager asks you to pass an entry into the office systems skipping certain process steps to book an order on the last day of the month to recognize the revenue. This would help you achieve your personal and team goals for the month. What would you do in such a situation?


Share with us an instance from the recent past where your team members had very diverse/ divergent views leading to a project getting stalled/ not moving forward. What did you do to make a difference to the situation?

One of the support functions in the organization has a reputation of not being easy partners. You have a project coming which will need their 100% support and commitment. What would you do in such a situation?

You notice that your team ends up having differences with project members from across borders because of perceived differences in values and norms. What would you do in such a situation?

Share with us your thoughts on the following statement(s)

The QA team is rejecting the code repeatedly, citing bugs, leading to slippage on timelines committed to client. These are small bugs in your view which would not make a huge difference in the customer experience. What do you do in such a situation?


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