HomeBlogInterview Question: What Challenges Your Problem Solving Most?
Interview Questions

Interview Question: What Challenges Your Problem Solving Most?

25 August 2023
Visual prompt: A stunning, cinematic image in yellow, black, and white tones. A person stands at a crossroads, surrounded by towering, intricate puzzles, symbolizing the challenges that test their problem-solving skills on their midjourney.
Interview Question ThemePurpose of QuestionExpectations from Candidate
What challenges your problem solving most?To assess a candidate's problem-solving abilities and challenges facedHonest, reflective responses; Ability to identify own strengths/weaknesses
Lack of information or dataUnderstanding candidate's approach in situations with limited dataShow systematic approach and ability to find additional information
Time ConstraintsAssessing ability to solve problem under time pressurePrioritization skills, ability to break complex problems into manageable steps
Dealing with conflicting perspectivesDetermining how well a candidate can handle conflicting viewsAbility to listen, communicate, and navigate differing viewpoints
Fear of making mistakesAssessing a candidate's approach towards failureGrowth mindset, acceptance of failures, learning from mistakes
General ConsiderationsEvaluating how well a candidate reflects and provides examples in their responsesAuthentic, reflective answers, specific examples
Growth OpportunitiesUnderstanding a candidate's dedication to continuous improvementCommitment to personal growth and development
Problem-Solving AbilitiesAnalyzing a candidate's understanding and application of problem-solving skillsDemonstration of effective problem-solving skills in real-life scenarios
Intended Interview LevelDetermining the depth and complexity of answer according to the level of interviewHigher level candidates expected to provide detailed examples and insights
Self-AwarenessGauging a candidate's understanding of their own strengths and weaknessesDemonstration of strong self-awareness and honesty in their responses

Problem-solving skills are considered essential in the workplace, regardless of the industry or job position. Employers value individuals who can identify, analyze, and find effective Solutions to various challenges. During job interviews, employers often seek to assess a candidate's problem-solving abilities by asking questions like "What challenges your problem solving most?".

This article aims to delve into why this Interview Question is asked, the purpose behind it, the intended interview level, the expected answer from candidates, and provide possible answers along with considerations to keep in mind when responding.

Why is this interview question asked: What Challenges Your Problem Solving Most?

When an employer asks, 'What challenges your problem solving most?' during an interview, they want to gain insights into a candidate's problem-solving abilities and the specific challenges they may face when approaching a problem or finding solutions.

This question helps the employer assess the candidate's critical thinking skills, resilience, adaptability, and ability to handle complex and demanding situations.

The purpose of the question:

The purpose of asking this Interview Question is to gauge a candidate's self-awareness, honesty, and ability to reflect on their own strengths and weaknesses. Employers want to understand a candidate's potential limitations and how they handle challenges, as this can be a crucial factor in their effectiveness as problem solvers in the workplace.

At what interview level is it asked?

This question can be asked at various interview levels, ranging from entry-level positions to senior Leadership roles. The level at which it is asked may influence the depth and complexity of the expected answer. Candidates at higher levels may be expected to provide more detailed examples and insights into the challenges they face.

Related Course: Leadership Development Course

What kind of answer is expected from the candidate?

Employers expect candidates to provide honest and self-reflective answers when addressing the question, 'What challenges your problem-solving most?' They are looking for candidates who can demonstrate a clear understanding of their own problem-solving strengths and weaknesses.

An effective answer would include specific examples, strategies for overcoming challenges, and a growth mindset that shows a willingness to learn and improve.

Possible answers to consider:

Lack of Information or Data: One common challenge in problem-solving is insufficient or ambiguous information. Candidates may face obstacles when they do not have access to all the necessary data or when the information they have is incomplete or contradictory.

However, a strong problem solver can work around this challenge by adopting a logical and systematic approach to gather additional information, consult relevant sources, and make informed decisions.

Time Constraints: Another common challenge in problem-solving is time pressure. Candidates may encounter situations where they need to find solutions quickly, leaving limited time for in-depth analysis and contemplation. Effective problem solvers can manage their time wisely by prioritizing tasks, breaking down complex problems into manageable steps, and making efficient use of available resources.

Dealing with Conflicting Perspectives: Problem-solving often involves collaborating with diverse teams or stakeholders who have different perspectives and opinions. Balancing these conflicting viewpoints and reaching a consensus can be a significant challenge. Candidates who can demonstrate their ability to navigate through differing perspectives, actively listen, and foster open communication are highly valued in problem-solving roles.

Fear of Making Mistakes: The fear of making mistakes can hinder problem-solving abilities. Candidates who are too cautious or afraid of failure may struggle to take Risks and explore innovative solutions. Overcoming this challenge requires a growth mindset and the willingness to learn from mistakes. Candidates should emphasize their ability to embrace failure as an opportunity for growth, learn from their experiences, and adapt their problem-solving approach accordingly.

Considerations when answering the question:

When responding to the question, 'What challenges your problem-solving most?' candidates should consider the following points:

  1. Be Authentic and Reflective: Employers value honesty and self-awareness. Candidates should provide genuine examples and insights into their own challenges rather than trying to give an idealized response. Reflect on personal experiences and growth opportunities to showcase a commitment to continuous improvement.

  2. Provide Specific Examples: Supporting answers with specific examples makes them more impactful and demonstrates the ability to apply problem-solving skills in real-life scenarios. This helps employers gauge the depth of a candidate's problem-solving abilities and their contextual understanding.

  3. Emphasize Strategies for Overcoming Challenges: While discussing challenges, candidates should also highlight the strategies they employ to overcome these obstacles. This demonstrates their problem-solving mindset, resilience, and adaptability. Including specific strategies, such as seeking feedback, collaborating with others, or engaging in continuous learning, can leave a positive impression on employers.

The question, 'What challenges your problem solving most?' provides an opportunity for candidates to showcase their problem-solving skills, self-awareness, and ability to adapt to various challenges. By addressing this question authentically, providing specific examples, and highlighting strategies for overcoming obstacles, candidates can impress employers and demonstrate their value as effective problem solvers in the workplace.

Remember to approach the question with confidence, self-reflection, and a growth mindset.

Types of problems that require creative problem solving techniques

Problem TypeExamplesCreative Problem Solving Techniques
InnovationDeveloping a new product or service, finding alternative solutions to existing problemsBrainstorming, Mind Mapping, SCAMPER technique
Conflict ResolutionResolving disputes between team members, negotiating with stakeholdersMediation, Collaborative problem solving, Win-win solutions
Decision MakingSelecting the best investment option, choosing between competing projectsDecision matrix analysis, Cost-Benefit analysis, Six thinking hats
Process ImprovementStreamlining manufacturing processes, optimizing supply chain operationsValue stream mapping, Root cause analysis, Kaizen
Marketing and AdvertisingCreating a memorable ad campaign, increasing brand awarenessStoryboarding, Empathy mapping, Mindset shifting

Common obstacles that hinder effective problem solving

ObstacleDescriptionSolution
Lack of informationNot having enough data or knowledge to fully understand the problemConduct research, gather more data, and seek expertise
Lack of creativityDifficulty in generating innovative ideas or thinking outside the boxEngage in brainstorming, mind mapping, or other creativity-enhancing techniques
Emotional biasesAllowing personal emotions or biases to influence decision-makingPractice self-awareness, logical reasoning, and seek diverse perspectives
Time constraintsLimited time available to analyze the problem and explore potential solutionsPrioritize tasks, delegate when possible, and use time management techniques
Lack of collaborationWorking in isolation without input or assistance from othersInvolve stakeholders, assemble teams, and encourage open communication
Fear of failureBeing afraid to take risks or make mistakes while problem-solvingEmbrace a growth mindset, learn from failures, and view mistakes as opportunities for improvement

Strategies for overcoming challenges in problem solving

ChallengeStrategyExample
Lack of claritySeek clarificationAsk questions to better understand the problem
Limited resourcesFind alternative solutionsUse open-source software instead of expensive proprietary tools
ComplexityBreak down the problem into smaller partsDivide a large project into manageable tasks
Lack of experienceResearch and learn from othersRead books or seek advice from experts in the field
Time constraintsPrioritize tasks and allocate time effectivelyCreate a timetable or schedule to manage time efficiently
Resistance to changeCommunicate the benefits and involve stakeholdersConduct meetings and presentations to address concerns and gain support

Similar interview questions:

  1. Which factors challenge your Problem Solving Skills the most?

  2. Which obstacles affect your Problem Solving Skills the most?

  3. What are the situations in which your Problem Solving Skills are most challenged?

  4. What are the issues you struggle with the most in the problem solving process?

  5. Can you share the moments when your Problem Solving Skills were most tested?

  6. What challenges do you face when solving problems in your mind?

  7. What factors challenge you the most in the problem solving process?

  8. Which factors hinder your problem solving ability the most?

  9. In which situations do you feel that your problem solving ability is most challenged?

  10. Which mental obstacles affect your problem solving process?

What challenges your problem solving most?, To assess a candidate's problem-solving abilities and challenges faced, Honest, reflective responses; Ability to identify own strengths/weaknesses, Lack of information or data, Understanding candidate's approach in situations with limited data, Show systematic approach and ability to find additional information, Time Constraints, Assessing ability to solve problem under time pressure, Prioritization skills, ability to break complex problems into manageable steps, Dealing with conflicting perspectives, Determining how well a candidate can handle conflicting views, Ability to listen, communicate, and navigate differing viewpoints, Fear of making mistakes, Assessing a candidate's approach towards failure, Growth mindset, acceptance of failures, learning from mistakes, General Considerations, Evaluating how well a candidate reflects and provides examples in their responses, Authentic, reflective answers, specific examples, Growth Opportunities, Understanding a candidate's dedication to continuous improvement, Commitment to personal growth and development, Problem-Solving Abilities, Analyzing a candidate's understanding and application of problem-solving skills, Demonstration of effective problem-solving skills in real-life scenarios, Intended Interview Level, Determining the depth and complexity of answer according to the level of interview, Higher level candidates expected to provide detailed examples and insights, Self-Awareness, Gauging a candidate's understanding of their own strengths and weaknesses, Demonstration of strong self-awareness and honesty in their responses
What challenges your problem solving most? what challenges your problem solving most what challenges your problem solving most?
Yu Payne is an American professional who believes in personal growth. After studying The Art & Science of Transformational from Erickson College, she continuously seeks out new trainings to improve herself. She has been producing content for the IIENSTITU Blog since 2021. Her work has been featured on various platforms, including but not limited to: ThriveGlobal, TinyBuddha, and Addicted2Success. Yu aspires to help others reach their full potential and live their best lives.
Yu Payne
Blogger

Yu Payne is an American professional who believes in personal growth. After studying The Art & Science of Transformational from Erickson College, she continuously seeks out new trainings to improve herself. She has been producing content for the IIENSTITU Blog since 2021. Her work has been featured on various platforms, including but not limited to: ThriveGlobal, TinyBuddha, and Addicted2Success. Yu aspires to help others reach their full potential and live their best lives.

Related Posts
Our team of experts is passionate about providing accurate and helpful information, and we're always updating our blog with new articles and videos. So if you're looking for reliable advice and informative content, be sure to check out our blog today.
A group of people, two men and a woman, are looking at various papers spread on a table. The woman is wearing glasses and a green sweater, while the man on her left is wearing glasses as well. They are intently studying the documents, occasionally pointing at certain sections or writing something down. In the background, two white letters can be seen on a black background. A close-up of the woman wearing glasses reveals her concentration on the papers. Another close-up shows a person holding a pen, most likely writing something down. All the people in the image are engaged in an activity that requires their full attention.
Problem Solving

Problem Solving in the Workplace

24 October 2022
A man wearing glasses and a beard is standing in front of a glass wall. He is holding a black tablet in one hand and several sticky notes in the other. The sticky notes are yellow and white in color and have black text written on them. On the glass wall behind him, there is a white letter on a black background and a black and white tree with circles and dots. In the foreground, there is a close-up of a hand holding a tablet and a close-up of a tie. The man appears to be concentrating intently, likely studying the notes and the tablet screen.
Problem Solving

Definition of Problem-Solving With Examples

22 October 2022
A man in a grey shirt is looking intently at a diagram in front of him. He is wearing glasses and has his head cocked slightly to the left. He is surrounded by a maze of white lines on a black and white patterned background. The main focus of the image is a white letter O on a black background with a white outline. The letter is surrounded by a grey background which has similar white markings. The man's attention is focused on the diagram, which is comprised of many interconnected shapes and symbols. He appears to be studying it intently, likely trying to figure out its meaning.
Problem Solving

Problem Solving in 9 Steps

24 October 2022
A woman stands beside an expansive screen, showing a map of different locations. She holds a clipboard in her hands as she looks intently at the map. A man in a black shirt and grey pants is pointing to something on the map. On the right-hand side of the map, there is a truck symbol with a pointer. On the left-hand side, there is a white airplane on a black and orange pin. Above the map is a yellow and black striped object, with a white object with black lines beside it. Below the map is a yellow and white logo and a yellow and grey sign with black text.
Problem Solving

Problem Solving Method Of Teaching

03 December 2021