The answer should set out what is important to the candidate, an insight into what motivates them, and are they in tune with the prospective Employer’s needs? It is also a test of cultural fit.

Cultural fit is a reoccurring theme, a national survey revealed that 43% of hiring professionals believe that cultural fit was the single most important factor in whom to hire.

Providing a positive answer concerning how you interact with your colleagues, management, and stakeholders is important. It should also refer to your personal and professional attributes and contain mini-stories.

It is always best to lean on the professional side of work over the social side, which like any interview answer, takes preparation. Without this preparation, one could default to ‘friendships,’ ‘fun,’ ‘relaxed atmosphere,’ or an answer that is scattered, vague, ill-thought-out, rather than portraying you as a professional that will deliver for the company.

Sample answer. Traits in (bold)

I really enjoyed my time working at XXXX (Positive). Like most companies, it was a steep learning curve but the support from my colleagues was immense. I set out immediately to learn the processes, procedures, and systems as well as learn how the project team worked. In order to achieve this goal, I needed to build relationships, work out who was the most knowledgeable and helpful (Go-getter). This is a challenge in itself but it pays dividends in many ways. I got great support from management (Collaborative) particularly the boss I reported to.

I’m a firm believer in the importance of building relationships with the construction team; I set up regular and frequent site visits (Relationships). as well as regular updates and planning meetings with the key stakeholders (Organizer), the response was very positive. Previously, they had received little or no attention from the previous Contract Manager. The result was a collaborative working environment where information and experiences were shared to the project’s benefit (Benefits to the Employer).