How do I deal with this stress

Interview: How do you deal with stress?

Examples of resilience and stress behavior ✓ Working under pressure ✓ Planning, prioritizing, reaching goals on time ✓ Extra: Managers and stress ✓

  • How do you work under stress?

  • Can you give me an example of your resilience?

  • On a scale from 1 to 10, what is the stress level at which you can still do a good job?

  • What is more important to you: Complete a task on time or perfectly, but later?

  • How do you relax after a hard day at work?

How to answer Applicants are happy to ask these and similar questions in job interviews in order to find out more about working under time pressure and stress.

The pressure increases: No wonder, because in times of flat hierarchies and increasing project work, workload peaks occur more frequently for employees. And then your nerves can be on edge, which can have a negative impact on the mood in the team.

9 good answers: how to deal with stress

Recognize requirements: Job changers should consider in advance of job interviews how they can substantiate corresponding demands in job advertisements. Because in addition to special professional requirements, personal characteristics that can be assigned to the area of ​​“mental stress” are increasingly being demanded.

Different descriptions: Then, among other things, there is talk of applicants “having a pronounced resilience”, “being able to deal patiently with difficult customers” or “working precisely under time pressure”.

Coaching tip

It is important to give substance to the answers.

Mere assertions such as “I can actually deal with stress quite well” or “I don't mind stress” are ineffective because individual examples and reasons are missing.

Answers: Dealing with stress

  1. "I now know my personal stress level very well. If I go well beyond my limits in urgent projects, I can make up for it quite well with sport. I also work a lot with to-do lists, then the important things become faster done."

  2. "In our industry, the burden is definitely higher. Then there can be a few irritable words between colleagues. It is important to me that you get back to each other quickly. It works very well if everyone pulls along."

  3. "Most recently, I was in charge of three projects in parallel for my employer, which was very challenging. However, the successes I strived for have also come about. For me, that is always a reward for the stressful effort before it."

  4. "Not everyone can deal with high loads and pressures. Personally, I always plan what I want to do first on the next day at the lecture. That helps me a lot so that there is no deadline pressure in the first place."

  5. "I fill up my batteries on vacation with long hikes. Everyone has to find their balance that is good for them."

  6. "I actually like it when there is a little more movement and speed at work. Otherwise I will get bored."

  7. "Constant stress is certainly unhealthy, but when it comes down to it I can still call up additional resources. For example, I have ..."

  8. "Every now and then you should reflect on which stress factors are particularly disturbing. Then it also helps to request support in good time with certain tasks. And to postpone less important things. What is important are always the tasks in which others respond to my results waiting."

  9. "Stress is probably very subjective in perception. Some can deal with more stress, others less. Over time, you get to know your team well and find a way together."

Examples of how you can keep track of things under stress

Also a question of the working method: If specialists, project managers or executives (all m / f) demand a “pronounced ability to work under pressure”, “structured work under pressure” or the ability to “prioritize even under time pressure”, suitable examples will help in convincing headhunters, HR employees or future employees Line manager.

From everyday work: Think about at least two scenarios from your everyday professional life in which the deadlines were tight and the expectations of you as a specialist, project manager or executive were particularly high.

Typical stress peaks in day-to-day management

  1. The employee does not keep the deadline for the report.

  2. Employee suddenly and for a long time absent due to illness.

  3. Goods from the supplier do not meet the quality requirements.

  4. Key customers are threatened with termination.

  5. Competitors attack in the core market.

  6. Changed legal requirements make production more difficult.

  7. Defined project budgets go beyond all limits.

  8. Service catalogs from external suppliers are too superficial, which leads to financial problems.

  9. Restructuring of processes does not lead to the desired success.

Prioritization helps: Then describe how, despite increased pressure, you set the right priorities in fulfilling your tasks and actively worked towards ensuring the desired success in your work.

Understanding of leadership: You have changed that

Active self-awareness: Managers are allowed to be a little self-critical. Especially when, for example, the jump from group or team leader to department or division manager is pending.

Different from before: If assessment centers (here: current exercises) or management audits are asked about acting under stress, it is often also about what managers have learned from less well-run professional situations or projects, what they have learned from them for themselves - and what they have been doing differently since then.

Lead authentically: Slippery careerists who claim that nothing can disturb them and that they have never lost their nerve seem implausible. Get the right mix of self-reflection and credibility. Describe professional situations in which you showed your nerves, but later smoothed things out on your own.

Effective and efficient, even under pressure

Systematically asked: Numerous helpful examples to illustrate your stress resistance, useful phrases and answers to similar questions related to the areas

  • Strengths and weaknesses

  • Persuasiveness

  • Loyalty to colleagues and superiors

  • Understanding of leadership

aim, get in our E-learning interview.

Suggestions through specific answers: Using numerous formulations and examples, you will learn clearly and with reference to special professional fields how you can convincingly present your personal strengths and credibly convey to new employers that you are the right person for the new job.

Strengthen leadership quality through self-reflection

This article is one of a series of questions to help you develop your leadership and perspective.

Christian Püttjer & Uwe Schnierda twitter: career coaches

photo: © peshkova /