Tell of Some Situations in Which You Have Had to Adjust Quickly to Changes Over Which You Had No Control. What Was the Impact of the Change on You?


Your job interview is a great place to make a strong impression on the company you are applying to. It is important to realize that you will be faced with different formats of interview questions. There are questions of a typical and general variety- and then there are more specific questions- like those of the behavioral type. One such question you may be asked is ‘Tell of some situations in which you have had to adjust quickly to changes over which you had no control. What was the impact of the change on you?’

Behavioral interview questions are aimed at getting a candidate to talk about what they have done in the past and how they have done it. You can take these questions as opportunities to share the special talents you have that allowed you to excel in the given situation- and to show that you are capable of reflective thinking. The above question is focused on adaptability- so you will want to think of a time when you dealt with change successfully. This question could also be phrased in such a way as ‘How have you been able to adapt to change in the past? Give a few examples and talk about how they led to personal growth.’ You can approach behavioral questions with confidence when you prepare by reading example questions and helpful strategies like the STAR method.

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How to Answer the ‘Tell of Some Situations in Which You Have Had to Adjust Quickly to Changes Over Which You Had No Control. What Was the Impact of the Change on You?’ Behavioral Interview Question

Give a Good Description of How You Adjusted. With this question- an important aspect to mention is how you handle change. First think of an example involving change that was either challenging or significant. The example should be one in which you were able to gracefully deal with the change. It is okay if you decide to use an example where you struggled with change- as long as you emphasize on how you were eventually able to overcome your difficulties and talk about how you learned from the experience.

Show Your Reflective Ability and That You Know Your Limits. Behavioral interview questions that focus on change require you to think about what it was about the change that was significant. In this particular format- the question asks about something that was not in your control. We all have limits- and no one person can do everything. The way you answer this question shows your ability to discern what lies within your limits and can be an opportunity to demonstrate humility and perceptiveness.

Think About How You Have Grown. When you are asked about the impact of something on you personally- you may be tempted to just talk about how it made you feel or say something brief like “It made a strong impact” or “It didn’t really impact me that much.” However- this part of the question gives you an opportunity to show off more of your qualifications. When you think about the impact that change has had on you- you can talk about what you learned from the experience. After going over the way your perspective changed or what skills you learned- reiterate by stating that the strengthening of that specific skill was a definite result of the change.

Use the STAR Method. The STAR method is a useful technique to remember when you are approached with behavioral interview questions. Using this strategy will keep you focused and ensure that you don’t forget to fully answer the question in the way that will most satisfy the interviewer. STAR represents these key elements:

  • • Situation or Task
  • • Action
  • • Result

The first thing to talk about in a STAR answer is the specific situation that applied to the question you are answering. After describing the circumstances thoroughly, the next part is to explore what action you took. Finally, explain the results of those actions.

Sample ‘Tell of Some Situations in Which You Have Had to Adjust Quickly to Changes Over Which You Had No Control. What Was the Impact of the Change on You?’ STAR Interview Answer

Once when I was working in fast food, my manager hired a new employee who was simply not willing to do the work that was needed. I didn’t like working with this individual because he didn’t ever pull his weight. Rather than make a complaint about having to work with him, as I realized it was not up to me, I simply did whatever tasks he left undone. For example, if something still needed to be cleaned because this person neglected to do so, I cleaned it. In reporting to my manager at the end of every shift, I would make note of the extra tasks I had to complete. This way, the laziness of the new employee was shown, rather than me having to try to criticize him directly. That employee ended up getting fired and the actions I took actually led to my promotion.