No matter where you work, your employer wants to know that you can work well with others in the team as well as working well with volunteers. The better you are at contributing to common goals, the more an employer will want to hire you. This is why employers will ask:
Behavioral Interview Question: What have you found to be the difficult part of being a member, not leader, of a team? How did you handle this?
There are many different ways you can answer this question. The following are the 6 best ways to prove that you are a team player, and not someone that dislikes being told what to do or how to work with others.
6 Best Team Player Approaches:
1. The “Adaptive” Approach:
“It’s often difficult to remember that every person has their own personality and their own way of working. Rather than tell them how to contribute, I believe in talking with my coworkers and seeing what they want to do on a project, and then taking on the areas that are left over.”
2. The “Leader/Not Leader” Approach:
“When it’s clear someone is passionate about a project, I am always happy to take the lead and provide input when necessary. Then if it’s clear that there are areas that need some type of leadership I will take over, so that no variables are left without someone making sure that part of the project is kept accountable.”
3. The “I Embrace Work But Can Give it Up” Approach:
“The hardest thing for me to do is give up my role in a project and let someone else run with it. But when someone has a good idea, that idea should be nourished. So if someone comes up to me and shows me that they would do a great job with my tasks on a project, I will happily give it up and trust that they’ll complete it.”
4. The “Plan for Everything” Approach:
“One of the most difficult parts of working in a team is being unable to plan things the way I would plan them myself. Luckily, I have worked with some amazing people so I’ve been able to put a lot of trust in them, and when I am worried that there is something that is being forgotten, I’ll usually try to do it myself or work with the person that is completing it to make sure it’s done.
5. The “It’s Not My Decision But I’ll Help” Approach:
“While I prefer to lead any project since it’s easier to be confident in the outcome, I have grown more comfortable with letting others control because I trust in my coworker. In the event I do have concerns or questions, I’ll map out why they are a concern and how to solve them and respectfully submit it to the person in charge.”
6. Being a Team Player
Those that can prove they are team players without making it sound like they simply take direction blindly are going to be most successful at answering this question no matter which of the 5 approaches they take.
As usual, it’s always better to use specific examples rather than write broadly like the examples above. Use the examples above to start you off then include a specific example from your experience.