Engineering manager interviews
In this video and article I'm talking about how to prepare for engineering manager interview
Engineering manager role comes in a lot of flavours and the interview processes for this role at various companies reflect that differences. In this video I'm talking about what kind of interviews and questions you can expect, and below the video you can find a list of 70+ questions that you might hear during different interview rounds.
0:00 developer interview vs manager interview
0:59 programming interview
02:20 system design interview
03:36 system design - how to prepare
05:30 team management interview
07:25 stakeholder management interview
08:20 management interview - how to prepare
11:05 general interview tips
- what is your leadership style?
- what is the role of engineering manager?
- what does it mean to be a successful engineering manager?
- how do you define a successful team?
- how do you define an individual success?
- have you ever had a very urgent situation when you had to make a quick decision? what was that and what did you do?
- have you ever made a bad decision that affected your team? how did you resolve the situation?
- who's the best leader you've ever worked with? what have you learned from them?
- who's your role model? why them?
- how do you motivate your team?
- how do you handle team members that lack motivation to grow?
- how do you onboard a new team member?
- have you ever had a person that was difficult to work with? what did you do about it?
- have you ever had to let go a member of your team?
- have you ever had a conflict between your team members? how did you deal with it?
- have you ever built a team from scratch? how does it differ from taking a lead of existing team?
- how do you keep track of ongoing work in your team?
- do you do 1-1 meetings with your team members? how do you do it?
- have you ever managed people who are way more experienced than you? how did you help them succeed in their roles?
- have you ever managed a team budget? how did you keep track of it?
- have you ever made a decision that your team didn't like?
- have you ever managed a fully distributed team? how did you ensure the team was successful?
- how do you stay in touch with your team when working remotely?
- how do you measure individual performance in your team?
- how do you measure performance of your team? what kind of metrics do you use?
- what kinds of performance review process are you familiar with? which of them works the best in your opinion?
- have you ever had a very high performing team? what made the team work so well together?
- have you ever had an underperforming team member? what did you do about it?
- have you ever had to put someone on PIP?
- have you ever promoted a team member? how did you help them progress?
- have you ever denied someone a promotion? how did you explain it to them?
- have you ever turned a low performing team member into a high performing one?
- how do you pass a message about a low score in performance review? how do you keep a low performing employee motivated?
- have you ever used or created a skill competency matrix?
- what's engineering manager role in hiring?
- who do you involve in hiring process?
- who do you involve in making hiring decisions?
- have you ever made a bad hire? what did you learn from it?
- have you ever negotiated an offer with a candidate?
- have you ever decided not to hire a candidate when other people were very positive about that candidate?
- what do you pay attention to when hiring?
- how do you choose the best canidate when you have many good candidates and just one seat?
Delivery & processes
- have you ever had to manage multiple urgent tasks? how did you do that?
- have you ever dealt with project that missed its deadline? what did you do about it?
- have you ever led a project that failed? what made it fail? what did you learn from it?
- have you ever dealt with suddenly changing requirements? what did you do about it?
- are you familiar with agile methodologies?
- have you ever worked with Scrum/Kanban/SAFe etc? How do you understand your role in that methodology?
- have you ever had to manage unclear product requirements? how did you do it?
- have you ever taken a struggling project and turned it around? how did you it?
- have you ever introduce a significant change in processes? how did you convince others to implement it?
- have you ever worked with UX designers/Technical Writers/testers/product managers? How did you ensure that you worked well together?
- how do you imagine a collaboration between engineering manager and product manager?
- have you ever had a conflict between you and some stakeholder? how did you solve it?
- how do you ensure that your team and other stakeholders are on the same page?
- how do you pass the feedback from your team to other stakeholders?
- how do you work with stakeholders when project is delayed?
- who were the most important stakeholders in your previous roles?
- do you have experience with Python/JS/Java etc.? Have you used Postgres/Jest/Hadoop etc.?
- what's your opinion on Postgres vs MySQL, Hadoop vs Spark etc?
- do you have experience with e-commerce/cybersecurity/logistics/other business domains?
- have you ever dealt with legacy software? how did you balance between technical debt and feature work?
- how do you introduce a new tool to the company?
- how do you choose whether to buy some software or to build it yourself?
- what's the software you wrote that you're most proud of?
- what's the last technology you've learned and why did you choose it?
- how do you promote best programming practices in your team?
- how do you stay up to date with ever changing technologies?
- what's your favorite programming language/framework and why this one?
- how do you implement monitoring in order to minimize downtime?