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Chief Operating Officer (COO) interview questions and answers

This set of Chief Operating Officer (COO) interview questions can help you identify candidates with essentials skills to qualify for this position.

Christina Pavlou
Christina Pavlou

An experienced recruiter and HR professional who has transferred her expertise to insightful content to support others in HR.

chief operating officer (coo) interview questions

Chief Operating Officer (COO) Interview Questions

Chief Operating Officers (COO) oversee all company procedures and day-to-day activities. They’re responsible for keeping company operations under control and executing long-term and short-term organizational plans.

Your COO will have various duties, so it’s important that they have solid experience in business environment and are able to multitask. Usually, a big part of their job is behind the scenes, so you should keep an eye out for candidates who like to organize and coordinate. A background relevant to your industry is also nice to have, as they’ll have a deeper understanding of your organizational functions and needs. For better results, tailor these questions to meet your specific job requirements.

This is a senior management position, so you should focus on professionals with excellent interpersonal skills and business acumen. Your ideal candidate will act as your company’s second-in-command. They should have strong leadership skills and be able to interpret your corporate vision into growth strategies and profitable operations.

Operational and Situational questions

  • What are the most important aspects of a company’s culture?
  • How do you deal with disagreements with the company CEO?
  • What’s your decision making style? Give an example of a situation where you had to make a quick decision.
  • Describe your typical daily tasks. How do you prioritize?
  • What analysis software tools have you previously used?
  • How do you prepare forecasting reports for quarterly office costs?
  • Which are the most effective performance appraisal systems?
  • How can you contribute to fundraising ventures?
  • What company policies would you suggest we implement?
  • We’ve found a new vendor for hardware supplies, who’ll decrease costs but their shipping is less reliable. What would you do?
  • How do you keep track of a company’s progress? Are there specific metrics you’ve found useful?
  • What’s the most effective way to give and receive feedback?

Behavioral questions

  • Describe a time when the management board was struggling to reach a decision. What did you do?
  • Have you ever implemented any correction moves to improve company procedures?
  • Give me an example of a time-saving solution you suggested and implemented.
  • Describe a situation where your team accomplished a specific goal. How did you motivate them?
  • What’s the biggest challenge you’ve faced so far? How did you handle it?

Source and a recruit skilled COO with Workable’s Boolean search cheat sheets.

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