Ever wondered why interviewers ask about your old managers?

It's not just for small talk!

Talking about your past managers reveals your work preferences and the type of support you work best with, helping interviewers understand your needs.

Getting better at this question shows your teamwork skills and how you adjust to different managers.

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Nail the answer to this question and make yourself stand out as a great team player!

Why Do They Ask Such a Question?

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Interviewers ask about your old bosses to learn more about you. How you talk about your past managers can show:

  • Your work habits: They want to know what kind of work habits you have and what leadership styles you like.

  • Preferred company style: They want to see if you'd fit well with their company's management style.

  • Willingness to learn: They want people who take advice and improve. Your answers show if you're willing to learn and follow directions.

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How To Answer

  1. Choose and be consistent:

Select a manager you admire and consistently highlight similar positive traits. Discuss what you learned from them and how it influences your work style


"I respected my manager, Mr. Nick, for his supportive approach, encouraging open communication, which helped me grow my confidence."

  1. Provide specific examples:

Mention specific situations that showcase your manager's positive attributes and how those experiences shaped your professional behavior.


"Mr. Nick led a project that improved our team's efficiency, teaching me valuable project management skills."

More Steps and Examples

  1. Demonstrate personal growth:

Explain how you've applied your manager’s teachings to your own work approach, showing your adaptability and eagerness to learn.


"I've adopted Mr. Nick's practice of regular feedback sessions, which I find enhances team collaboration."

  1. Connect skills to the role:

If they taught you a relevant skill, mention how it applies to the job you’re applying for.


"The project management techniques Mr. Nick taught me are directly applicable to this project coordinator role."

Jim from The Office says,

Give It a Go

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Imagine you’re in a job interview for a position you’ve been really excited about. You’ve talked about your skills and experience, and now the interviewer looks at you thoughtfully. Then, they lean forward slightly and ask: "So, could you tell us about your favorite manager and why they were your favorite?"

How should you answer?


"My favorite manager was Mr. Nick. He always encouraged open communication and provided constructive feedback, which helped me develop confidence and improve my skills. For example, during a major project, his guidance on task delegation improved our team's efficiency and taught me valuable leadership skills, which are directly applicable to the project coordinator role I'm applying for."

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"I liked my manager because he was cool and let us do what we wanted most of the time. He didn’t really bother us much, so we had a lot of freedom, which was nice because I could work however I liked without someone constantly checking on me."


In the scenario above, what is the best answer?

Take Action

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Now that you know how to give a great answer to "Who was your favorite manager and why?":


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