Whenever I'm faced with the question on how I've handled conflict in the past, I struggle to find past examples of this happening with a direct report, a peer or even a senior.

What does that say about me? Does it mean that I consciously evade situations leading to conflict? Or does it mean that if such a situation has never happened then maybe I have not managed people for long enough?

What is the best way to answer such a question?


1 Answer 1


Find a list of such questions off the internet.

Sit down and think for a couple of hours about what you would say if you were asked each question.

"Conflict" doesn't have to be a shouting match. It can be as simple as mild disagreement, or a case of competing priorities, or allocation of scarce resources, or whatever.

Interviewers are generally looking for evidence that you are able to recognise conflict, and you can manage/resolve such situations in a useful, productive way.

  • 3
    If you don't find one, make one up, just tell these guys what they want to hear...
    – Laurent S.
    Commented Nov 26, 2020 at 18:56
  • @LaurentS. it's very easy to tell if someone is making stuff up and that does reflect badly. Behavioral interviews are all about authenticity. The OP's answer doesn't have to describe an "epic conflict", just a real one. The point is to give an idea of what the interviewee is like when there's problems.
    – teego1967
    Commented Nov 27, 2020 at 18:30
  • There is actually no need to make one up. A conflict is just a disagreement. Everyone has had them. Commented Nov 27, 2020 at 23:11

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