Values-based Interview Questions

Ask the below-given values-based interview questions to find candidates who have the same values as your company and will be a great fit.

Why ask values-based interview questions?

In business, core values reflect a company’s long-term objectives and mission. A company’s values define:

  • How do employees work together?

    For example, a company that values innovation will boost creative ideas and brainstorming sessions for all the staff members.

  • Where will the company invest?

    For example, a company that gives preference to streamlined workflow will invest in DMS and training programs for all employees.

  • What type of people the company is interested in hiring?

    For example, a company that focuses on growth will recruit learners and organize training sessions to help employees learn new things.

During your recruitment process, values-based interview questions will help you know:

  • What drives candidates’ behavior at work?
  • What are candidates’ priorities at work?
  • If candidates goals align with your objectives

Below are some examples of common corporate values at work:

  • Reliability: Working with professionalism and honesty, and following company policies.
  • Teamwork: Working with colleagues and teams to achieve goals.
  • Liability: Taking responsibility for decisions and actions both individually and in a team.
  • Social accountability: Incorporating social and environmental solutions into working processes.
  • Novelty: Executing new ideas to improve the business.
  • Client orientations: Increasing and improving client satisfaction.

Examples of value-based interview questions


  • Tell me about a time when you encountered an ethical dilemma at the workplace? What did you do?
  • If you see an employee stealing company’s property, how would you address the issue?


  • Have you ever failed to deliver a team project on time? If given a chance, what you would have done differently?
  • Have you ever worked with a colleague you don’t get along with? What was your approach?


  • Tell me a successful team project you have recently worked on. What was your role in the team?
  • How would you react if your team is criticized for a project that was completely assigned to you?

Social accountability

  • How do you balance between performing detailed quality controls on products while keeping the price low?
  • Suggest new company policies for making our operations more environment-friendly? How would you ensure these policies are implemented and followed?


  • Share about a time when your standard process could not give desired results. What did you do?
  • Give me an example of a successful product? What features made it so successful?

Client orientations

  • Share about a time you calmed an angry client. What was your approach?
  • How would you handle a client who visits the store or calls just when your shift ends?

Tips to assess candidates’ answers

  • Start by determining your company’s values. All employees, from junior-level roles to management, should share these key values.
  • Then, make sure your every value converts into work behaviors. Situational and behavioral questions will help you in assessing if candidates maintain the required behavior at work.
  • Smaller teams or departments might value additional skills. Modify your questions to assess those too. For example, a research team might prioritize innovation, while a sales team is likely to boast a great client service approach.
  • Try combining competency-based and values-based interview questions to assess skills and knowledge. This will help you in creating complete candidate profiles and reach more firm recruitment decisions.

Red Flags

  • They don’t have real-life experiences or examples to share: During the interview, many candidates claim to be “great team players” or have a “solid work ethic”. But, if they cannot share real-life examples to support these values, it can be a red flag.
  • Their values are not related to the role: Employees with client orientations might be great for marketing and sales department that seek to interact with clients. But, they are not apt for the researcher’s role.
  • Inflexible: New recruits could adjust to your working style, as long as they are interested in the position. If, however, they are inflexible and don’t match your key values, that is a red flag for long-term collaboration.
  • Arrogant: Showing a bossy attitude or being negative towards criticism are signs of people who prioritize their own values over others. In the long run such employees can end up creating a negative work environment.