Customer question on: preparing for a job interview with the president or vice-president of a company

Executive management interview

Let me tell you a little bit about my situation. I met with the controller for the 1st & 2nd interview. Now for this 3rd interview I am to interview with the President and VP.

Should I prepare different? I am so nervous about this one.

I am going for a Staff Accountant position for a small to medium sized company. The hardest question that I have to answer is why do I want to leave. Well right now I currently work in a large corporation and I am not happy with my current job.

I was mislead about what the positions responsibilities were meaning there was more clerical work than accounting. I just don’t know how to answer that question and I know they will ask that.

Also, how do I let them know that I am going to stick with them and not leave. I really need to seal the deal and my 3rd interview is tomorrow morning.


Don’s answer to: Interviewing with the president or vice-president of a company

Congratulations on making it to the 3rd interview.  I’m sure they are strongly considering you for the job, having made it this far in the interview process.    I don’t know anything about the position or company for which you are interviewing, but they will probably focus on behavioral questions at this point. 

All the questions about why you are looking for work, tell me about yourself, why did you leave your last job, etc., should have been answered in the first interview.

They already feel you are qualified for the job or you would not have made it to this point.  Now they want to know how well you will be able to do the job and will probably ask questions like this:

  • What is your work ethic?
  •  How well do you work with others?
  • Are you a leader or follower?
  • Can you work under pressure?
  • Describe a difficult problem and how you dealt with it.

I can’t say for sure because every interview is different, but these are the types of questions I would prepare for.  Don’t just give a yes or no answer to these, you need to answer with real life examples from your past experience.

Just look in the guide and you will find a variety of answers to these type of questions.  Once you get a gist of how to answer the question from my examples, you should be able to easily come up with your own answer.

The third interview is also a time for you to close.  I usually don’t out-right ask for the job, but I do edge closer.  I will ask questions like:  When do you expect to have a final decision?  Or  When can I expect to hear from you?  How may others are you considering to offer the position to?

In closing, tell them you like everything they have told you about the company, the job, the opportunities and how much you would like to work there and that you feel you will be a valuable asset to the team or company. 

I don’t know if training is involved to get you up to speed, but I usually like to tell them that  with all my previous experience and training that I feel I will be almost immediately productive stepping into this new position.

Depending on the job, new employees are usually not immediately productive because they require on the job training which slows down the other people who need to train you, thus the  company is not as productive during your first 1-3 months. 

That’s why I like to tell them I am ready to go out of the chute and will be productive and profitable, but whether you can say that depends on your situation.

All in all, you need to stand out in the third interview as someone who can do the job, requires the least training, and will work well with everyone else.  With lots of emphasis on the latter because if they don’t think you get along with your new co-workers, you won’t get the job.