Top 25 Emotional Intelligence Interview Questions and Answers in 2023

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Written By Editorial Team

Successful employees do not just need specialist knowledge – that is a fact. Practice shows that emotional intelligence is essential for professional success. It is not for nothing that many job advertisements list soft skills such as empathy, the ability to work in a team, and motivation. Questions about emotional intelligence have become common in any job interview.

That is why we present you with the top 25 emotional intelligence interview questions and answers.

1. How Well Do You Adapt To A New Environment?

Starting to work in a new environment requires flexibility and change. However, I have always adapted quickly to new work situations. Much of this has to do with my ability to get along and communicate effectively with many people. For example, when I started at my previous job, I introduced myself to my colleagues right away and felt confident asking them questions in my first few weeks. When I was unsure about something, I did not hesitate to ask for pointers.

My ability to be open and friendly with everyone, and to communicate my questions or concerns when necessary, will help me quickly adjust to this new work environment. I know that you value the collaboration on many projects in the company, so I know that my ability to foster relationships and communicate effectively will also help me in this regard.

2. What Is Your Dream Job?

My dream job involves a lot of teamwork, like regular staff meetings and group projects. I am drawn to this job because it emphasizes communication between colleagues, management, and staff. My previous job was 50% team projects, and I am excited to continue that kind of teamwork and open communication here. I feel best when collaborating with others and feel that this job vacancy is close to my dream job.

3. What Makes You Angry?

In general, I am a fairly balanced person. Experience shows that there are times when things do not go as planned. Sometimes it feels like someone is not doing their part. But I try to avoid these situations by forming contingency plans and keeping the lines of communication open with my team. When I feel fired up, I usually try to take a moment. Taking a breather helps me gain a new perspective and not make a hasty decision. Getting a fresh perspective is beneficial for everyone.

4. Have You Ever Had A Hard Time Working With A Manager?

I once had a manager who brought her problems to work with her every day. She was going through a difficult time in her personal life. The way she behaved affected the atmosphere in the office. It did not affect my work because I sympathized with her circumstances, but the situation was challenging. Although I like to get close and friendly to my colleagues I think there is time and place for that. We should be professional when a job needs to be done. And we should not, in any case, make the job of others more complicated.

5. What Has Been The Biggest Disappointment In Your Work Life?

In retrospect, I would see my first criticisms as a manager as a failure. At the time, I was not prepared for this additional responsibility. I wanted to present convincing results quickly and gave more weight to technical aspects than personal ones. As a result, an overall high-performing employee who reported to me resigned without warning. He felt too much pressure. That was a personal defeat for me.

I reflected intensively on my leadership communication at the time and took advantage of intensive coaching. In short, I learned from the damage. I did not have to experience anything like that again. Ultimately, I found that a bitter disappointment comes from false expectations and poor communication. The more imprecisely we formulate our wishes or expectations of others (in relationships as well as at work), the greater the risk of being disappointed. Anyone who remains silent and hopes the other person will fulfill their wishes is ignorant. After all, we have no control over the behavior of others or how things turn out.

6.  As The Company’s Goals And Priorities Change, How Do You Help Your Team Understand And Embrace The New Goals?

Priority shifts happen in every company and every position. Restructuring and adapting to the economic situation are the order of the day for many companies in today’s dynamic times. That is why it is crucial to be flexible about changes and support the change processes.

Regular changes are part of the everyday life of every company. It is crucial to show empathy towards colleagues in the team and to motivate them. This not only includes regular discussions and good planning but also subordinating one’s own needs and projects in a critical situation. This leads to the success of the company.

7. How Do You Motivate Yourself For A Task That You Find Uninteresting?

I try to break this task down into small parts. In doing so, I often discover interesting aspects from other perspectives, which I devote myself to immediately. Once the start has been made, interest in the entire task usually grows.

8. What Are You Passionate About?

I am passionate about pastry. I enjoy the process of researching new recipes and trying them out. I have been writing about my baking experiences for the past three years. Every year I host a massive holiday cookie swap with friends. I am very detailed and I love the scientific aspects of baking. However, I am also a very social person and use my baking as an opportunity to meet up with friends and family.

9. What Have You Achieved And What Are You Most Proud Of? Why?

My proudest thing is that we took the initiative to upgrade our filing system to a virtual platform. For years, my boss talked about how our paper filing system was becoming outdated and making it hard to find the documents we needed. I convinced my boss to let me download a program that would allow us to streamline our documents so that they are all in one secure online location that all employees can access. Thanks to this change, the department can find documents faster than before. In addition, the files are safe from physical dangers and are only accessible to the account holders;

10. What Kind Of People Would You Hire If You Had Your Own Company?

If I were to start my own company, I would hire people with a great work ethic and organizational skills. These two skills would ensure that employees give their best and manage their tasks. I would also focus on organizational skills. As they are important for effective communication between departments.

11. What Would Your Current Co-Workers Say Is The Most Rewarding Thing About Working With You?

If my co-workers had to describe me, they would say that I am kind and organized. Recently, my manager entrusted me with the direction of a project that consisted of contacting our main donors to inform them of our next gala. He trusted me to maintain a professional demeanor and follow through on all the details regarding who could attend and if they would donate an end-of-year gift.

12. What Makes You Unique?

Something that sets me apart from many other candidates is my ability to connect with clients on a human level. From the beginning, by making them feel comfortable they are uncovering all of their pressing needs around my product. From there, I can conversationally present my product, in light of their needs. I attribute this skill in large part to my flair for small talk with ‘warm-up’ clients, as well as my genuine interest in sports and the news of the day.

13. What Would You Have Done Differently At Work?

Early in my career, I had the opportunity to lead a complex group project. I did not feel prepared in terms of my management skills and declined. Now, I wish I had been open to challenging myself. To ensure I never felt that way again, I took management training courses and also built mentoring relationships. That has given me confidence in my management skills. I also developed a professional relationship with a group of people I can consult about opportunities.

14. What Role Do Emotions Play In The Workplace?

The world of work is changing. We are not only valued for how smart we are academically speaking or for our training or experience, But also for how we relate to ourselves and others.

Our performance largely depends on how we manage our emotions and those of others. Being emotionally intelligent predicts success better than what we traditionally understand as intelligence since it better determines our flexibility and adaptability to the job. Emotional incompetence is detrimental to the company. This is for the worker and society, so if we want to be successful in any aspect of life, including work, we cannot ignore this reality.

15. What Motivates You To Be Better?

Meeting deadlines and achieving goals motivate me. Setting and meeting deadlines give me a great sense of accomplishment. I love creating an organized schedule to complete a task and achieve my goals on time. When I ran a fundraiser last year, I set multiple deadlines for tasks leading up to the event. Reaching each milestone motivated me to keep working and helped ensure the event ran smoothly.

16. Would You Describe Yourself As A Nice Person?

Yes, I consider myself a nice person. I am compassionate toward others, and I am always willing to help someone in need. For example, while working on a complex team project, a team member was frustrated and having trouble completing their tasks. I worked hard to complete my assignments ahead of time so I could help her. I listened to her frustrations and helped her find a solution. My kindness helped our team to complete the project successfully.

17. Tell Me About A Time You Made A Mistake

I am the type of person who tries to learn and grow from every mistake. A few years ago, a team I was working with did not make a sale. And we were told it was partly to do with our ineffective images. Over the next six months, I spent much of my free time learning how to use various software programs to create compelling visual presentations. Since then, I have received continual praise for my images at sales meetings and presentations.

18. Do You Work Well With Other People?

Working on many team projects has allowed me to develop my ability to communicate clearly with others and mediate conflicts between team members. For example, on a recent project, two of my teammates could not agree on how to approach a project item. I listened to each of their concerns and had everyone sit down, We came up with a solution that would satisfy everyone. Thanks to my ability to listen to others and mediate conflicts, we finished our project ahead of schedule and even received a compliment from our employer for the high quality of our work.

19. How Would You Describe Yourself?

I would describe myself as an enthusiastic person and a valuable team player. I played basketball in both high school and college, so I learned how to work with others to achieve a collective goal. I also learned the importance of not only being able to lead but also knowing when I needed to follow. Those skills have served me well in my career. I know how to communicate, listen and support my partners and the public, and I am proactive when it comes to identifying personal conflicts so they can be resolved quickly.

20. How Do You Feel About Working In A Team Environment?

I think I have a lot to contribute to a team environment. I love helping to solve group problems through research and communication. For example, while planning a corporate event, our team struggled to decide how to set up the room. Instead of getting into a discussion of personal preference, I did some research. I read publications on event planning to find information on the best customer experience room set up for our type of event. Sharing the research and rationale, my co-workers and I agreed that this was the best approach. We had a great event. Customer satisfaction increased several percentage points from the previous year’s event.

21. What Do You Think About Self-Criticism?

When things happen to us we have a different view than when they happen to others, due to a strong sense of self-criticism that makes us ruthlessly attack ourselves while being more tolerant of others. We perpetuate our negative thoughts and behaviors because at some stage in our lives they have been useful to us. So, self-criticism is beneficial to a certain point. I use it to improve and get better at my job. However, I will not allow it to lead to a negative self-image.

22.  Are Emotions Like Sadness Or Anger Healthy?

They are powerful emotions that drive change. We have to realize that negative emotions such as sadness and anger are not negative. They appear in us with a purpose. Not allowing emotions is not positive for us. Every emotion has something to tell us, and we really cannot hide them. I will not hide away from any emotion. I will use it to improve my work style and relationships with colleagues.

23. Tell Me About A Time You Received Negative Feedback From Your Boss. How Did That Make You Feel?

At first, I was surprised and a little frustrated by my manager’s comments about the project. But when I delved into the reasoning behind his comments, I realized that I definitely could have paid more attention to several key areas.  I used his feedback to develop a more comprehensive approach to my next project.

24. What Do You Do If An Employee Regularly Fails To Comply With Your Instructions?

I try to analyze the work situation, listen to my colleague, and understand the reasons for their behavior. Surely there is an understandable reason why they do not comply with the instructions. They are maybe confused about what they are supposed to do, have difficulty executing the task, or even have personal problems. Together we can find a solution so in the future this does not happen again. I will make a decision only after a precise analysis of the situation.

25. How Do You Deal With Setbacks At Work?

I draw conclusions, analyze my mistakes and learn from this experience to do better next time. Learning from experience is one of the most successful learning methods and is essential for personal and corporate success. Setbacks are an inevitable part of working, and just a step toward achieving the end goals.


HR managers often use tricks to test candidates’ emotional intelligence. During the interview, they say cheekily and openly that they have doubts about the applicant’s abilities. Candidates with a low emotional intelligence score will be angry and express their indignation openly. An emotionally mature applicant remains calm and politely asks what is causing the doubt.

So, stay calm and composed. Give confident answers to the questions, and you will make a positive impression on your interviewer.