40 Area Manager Interview Questions (With Examples)

By Indeed Editorial Team

Published 9 June 2022

The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.

Area managers help businesses recruit, hire and train new departmental managers, prepare budgets, create sales targets and direct growth in specific regions. Interviewing for this position may include multiple questions focused on your skills, education and experience. Understanding some of these area manager interview questions may help you prepare for this meeting. In this article, we list 35 interview questions you may face as an area manager and include five example questions with sample answers you to use as a guide to craft your own responses.

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General area manager interview questions

General area manager interview questions may help a company better understand you as a candidate. These questions may cover topics such as your career experiences, personal interests and overall motivations. They help the hiring manager gauge how well you fit with a company's culture and its management team. Here are 10 questions you may encounter during your interview:

  1. Do you respond well to constructive criticism?

  2. What are your top strengths as an area manager?

  3. Do you work well under pressure?

  4. How do you schedule your daily tasks?

  5. Why are you interested in our company?

  6. What role do you see yourself in over the next 10 years?

  7. How many years of experience do you have in area management?

  8. What was your biggest challenge in life?

  9. How do you handle stress at work?

  10. What work environment feels comfortable for you?

Related: 20 Project Manager Interview Questions and How to Answer Them

Interview questions about experience and background

Background questions may help an interviewer gauge your area manager qualifications. These questions may showcase your accomplishments and duties from previous positions. Try to connect these items to your new job to emphasise your strengths as an employee. Here are 12 background and experience questions you may encounter in your area manager interview:

  1. What about area management appeals to you?

  2. How do you allocate essential duties to your employees?

  3. What do you expect to do as our area manager?

  4. Describe a time when you managed communication breakdowns on your team.

  5. Why does your job experience qualify you for this job?

  6. How do you handle difficult team members?

  7. What's your area management style?

  8. How do you motivate a struggling employee?

  9. What challenges do area managers face?

  10. Describe your biggest area manager career success.

  11. How did your education prepare you for this position?

  12. Do you have any extra certifications suited to this position?

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In-depth interview questions

In-depth questions help the hiring manager understand more complex information about you. For example, they may discuss your work habits, style and ethics as an area manager. They may also ask situation-specific questions to gauge your reactions. Here are 13 in-depth questions you may get during your interview:

  1. How do you resolve personal interest conflicts as an area manager?

  2. Define a successful managerial team.

  3. What continuing education steps do you prefer?

  4. When do you decide to let go of an employee?

  5. How do you collect and use manager success data?

  6. Discuss a time when you managed your team remotely.

  7. How do you stay on budget?

  8. What steps do you use when building a successful team?

  9. How do you manage unexpected situations?

  10. Have you ever attended management workshops?

  11. How do you coordinate sales within different regions?

  12. Describe how you consult with your clients.

  13. What do you do if your team can't meet a deadline?

Related: 15 Interview Questions to Ask When Hiring a Manager

Area manager questions with sample answers

Hiring managers may ask even more questions to learn about your personality, career skills and qualifications. Reading a few sample answers may help you frame your responses during an interview. Here are some potential interview questions the hiring manager may ask you with sample answers:

1. Why would you make a good manager for this position?

Your hiring manager may ask this question to understand how well you know the position. They may also ask you this to gauge your reasons for applying, such as your job expectations and career goals. Use this question to discuss your previous experiences as an area manager and any skills and training you can bring to the position.

Example: 'I learnt many important management skills at my previous positions, including planning complex goals, working with multiple team members and preparing budgets. My managers and I created training exercises for each employee, tracked company morale and provided support through high-level HR. My focus on team support strives to get each team member to meet and exceed their potential as employees. I believe that my 10 years of experience in this profession has taught me the necessary abilities to help your firm.'

Related: How to Sell Yourself in an Interview (With Interview Tips)

2. Describe an unpopular management decision you had to make.

Companies may ask this question to learn how you handle hard decisions in the workplace. They may also use it to see whether you prioritise the company's best interests with every decision you make. Consider using this question to showcase your willingness to make important choices and discuss how you handle potential complaints from your teammates.

Example: 'I discovered that a very popular manager was scheduling easier shifts for their friends and providing them with better promotion opportunities. I believed that this was a conflict of interest and an ethical problem that could have damaged our company's reputation. During internal investigations, many of this manager's employees pressured me to let them stay in their position. This manager was also a friend of mine, but I let them go in the company's best interests. We lost a few employees, but this decision showed our company's commitment to ethical behaviour.'

3. How do you create sales targets?

The hiring manager may ask this question to learn more about your financial skills and sales forecasting methods. They may also ask this question to know more about your sales successes in other positions. Answer this question by talking about your planning techniques and previous achievements. Prepare to answer with real financial data to increase your accuracy.

Example: 'I create sales targets by researching the focus market, analysing previous sales numbers and using multiple predictive models to gauge potential success. After gauging these numbers, I check each team member's previous successes and use them to estimate how many sales they may make. This simple method helped my last team increase profits by 125% over five years by producing accurate sales targets. This method also increased sales efficiency by 50% and shipping costs by 75% over the same span.'

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4. What traits make a good area manager?

Interviewers may ask this to gauge what kind of managers you may train. They may also ask this question to learn more about your hiring and interviewing processes. Use this question to highlight manager traits that you think are important, such as specific training or career experiences.

Example: 'I think an excellent manager is a powerful leader who isn't afraid to make tough decisions. Managers must also provide a calm emotional centre for an office to create a positive and professional atmosphere. They must continually put the needs of the company and their employees first. When I select managers, I look for people with strong empathetic skills and an expert understanding of our market. I then train them using a person-centred concept. I emphasise the importance of understanding each employee and identifying their strongest traits.'

Related: 4 Steps to Emphasise Personal Strengths in an Interview

5. Discuss your budgeting method.

Hiring managers may ask this question to see whether your budgeting methods work for their needs. They may also ask this question to see how well you understand the budgeting process. You can use this question to highlight your financing skills and discuss previous successes with budgeting.

Example: 'I start each budget by getting input from all department managers at each area location. I learn more about their budgetary needs, potential profits and expenses. After pooling this information, I check corporate funds to gauge availability and create a budget around these needs. The primary goal is to support each department and help them succeed while minimising unnecessary expenses. I constantly search for simple ways to cut back on costs, such as eliminating unnecessary steps in the hiring process. In five years, I cut our budget expenses by 30% to increase profits by 75%.'

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