Drive for Results Interview Questions

What is the drive for results interview questions? And how can you ask competency-based interview questions to determine which candidates have the best drive for results attitude and experience?

In this blog post, we will highlight the importance of hiring talent capable of driving results in leadership positions. We will then discuss different drives for results interview questions and, more importantly, how to determine a great interview answer that showcases the candidate's ability to drive results successfully.

According to Harvard Business Review, a huge 78% of leaders were rated higher on their ability to drive for results over the ability to inspire and motivate others.

So while the pull technique of inspiring others is an important skill, it's arguably more important for leaders to have the ability to push others to drive for results.

What does drive for results mean?

So what exactly does a drive for results mean?

Human Resources Blog describes this term as having the traits and attributes to be counted on and exceed goals successfully. Top performing individuals who are consistent in their goal achievements through being action-orientated in the workplace.

People driven for results tend to be optimistic, passionate, have personal ownership, are self-improving and self-motivating.

So what does it mean to be action-orientated?

Another way of saying this is results- orientated or goal orientated.

When an individual first recognise what results are important, then makes plans and a commitment to achieving a positive outcome.

The goal-orientated process involves setting SMART goals or targets. A drive for results individual will take this further by setting goals that exceed the minimum standard required.

Building on this, a results-driven individuals will also have the ability to motivate themselves and others to make a difference and reach targets.

Successful organisations are run with proactive, results-driven people.

Results orientation in employees

Employees who can deliver results are the most sought after candidates. This is especially the case in leadership and management positions. That’s why determining who has these skills through results orientation interview questions are essential!

Effective leaders not only have the drive for results, but they also have excellent people skills too. Leaders who can simultaneously do both are rated in the 91st percentile in their overall leadership effectiveness.

Great leaders will be able to:

1.   Communicate a clear strategy and direction

When everyone on the same team has a shared vision and goals, they can all work with clarification and harmony to achieving their shared targets. It’s up to a great leader to make this message known to their team.

2.   Inspire and motivate

While successful leaders are ‘pushers’, the most successful leaders have the ability to ‘pull’ their teams too. This is what we refer to as inspiring and motivating. Leaders who can drive for results whilst inspiring others will generate the best results.

3.   Establish stretch goals

Stretch goals are when targets and goals are pushed a little further to go above and beyond. A great drive for results leader will establish stretch goals by encouraging the team to work harder and raise the bar. 

4.   Have high integrity and establishes trust

Trust is needed for teams to follow a leader. A great example of this is using stretch goals. If a leader establishes stretch goals but doesn't have their teams trust, the team will quickly feel that they are being taken advantage of and manipulated.

5.   Develop others

Drive for results-orientated leaders also care and put their efforts into the development of their subordinates. They realise that with an improved team, work ethic is more productive and results are better.

6.   Be Coachable

Finally, a results-driven leader recognises they themselves can continually make improvements too. They are very open to feedback and are receptive to advice.

Importance of asking candidates drive for results oriented questions in an interview

As a recruiter, you want your team to be filled with results-orientated people. This massively increases productivity and dramatically reduces employee turnover. Employees who can envision and get on board with organisational goals are way more productive and loyal to the company.

If that alone hasn’t convinced you to use results-driven interview questions, then consider this:

  1. Results-driven employees don’t get tunnel visioned on project details that are irrelevant to the bigger picture. They are able to focus on what they are working towards (not what they’re working on), stick within budget and meet deadlines effectively.
  2. Results-driven employees are able to identify solutions to problems (sometimes before they arise) and think quickly on their feet.
  3. Results- driven employees take pride in their work. So they always deliver results and go beyond the minimum requirements.

Example questions you can ask candidates to get the best drive for results answers.

In a job interview, the best way to determine results-driven candidates is to test via competency questions, otherwise known as behaviour-based interview questions

These are questions that are designed to focus on candidates' abilities, actions, and behaviours, which they have to give real-life past examples to showcase how they’ve demonstrated certain skills.

As a recruiter, you have a more accurate representation of what the candidate can do, allowing more successful hires. There’s no margin for error based on bias or subjective impressions that personal opinions and feelings can influence.

Drive for results competency- based interview questions examples

  1. What is the most complex and difficult goal you’ve needed to set for you and your team, and how did you pursue this goal?
  1. When have you achieved a goal that seemed too big to achieve, what did you do to get there?
  1. What is your best moment where you’ve driven for results and achieved concrete, stellar results?
  1. Describe a time when you’ve gone above and beyond the minimal requirements of your goal. What were the results?
  1. Describe a situation that demonstrates your reputation for success from the perspective of your colleagues and managers.
  1. Tell me of a time you felt most proud of yourself.
  1. What's your process of putting a plan into action?
  1. What's the best recipe for success?
  1. Discuss a time you failed to meet your goals, why did this happen? What would you do differently?

How to understand if candidates have given a great drive for results?

You’ve now got a list of behaviour-based interview questions to use in your recruitment process or take inspiration for your own interview questions. Still, now you need to analyse your candidate's answers.

Candidates who answer your drive for results interview questions successfully will do all or some of the following:

  • Give hard facts on tangible results such as ‘ increased revenue by X%’. This is because their results-driven attitude can identify a goal and communicate that in an easy and simplified way with a big impact.
  • They’ll be self-critical to demonstrate learning points and talk about how these will be improved in future scenarios.
  • They’ll talk about examples relating directly to themselves and results related to their personal performance not someone else’s.
  • They’ll be able to use a range of examples, not just within a corporate setting but with their personal life too. Results-driven people usually apply this skill across all facets of their life, not just with their careers. They’ll tend to have great success in many of these areas including hobbies, fitness, social group, religious groups etc.
  • They’ll successfully be able to share how and why they are motivated and relate this back to the role in question.
  • They’ll be able to discuss their success at working within a team, how they pushed and inspired others to work harder. From their answer you’ll easily determine if they are able to collaborate well with others.
  • They will use every question as an opportunity to showcase a great skill, trait or result that is applicable to the role as they have the ability to identify what's required for the role and demonstrate to you how they can achieve it.
  • They will be able to hold themselves accountable for different scenarios and outcomes, which is a great quality in a results-driven person.
  • A great candidate will be able to give clear and concise answers that answer the questions well, without waffling on unnecessarily. Results-driven people are able to identify the problem, provide a solution and get on with it.
  • They will be confident, and have the ability to back up each of their claims with examples and results. Sometimes they may even bring hard evidence to support their answers as they ‘ll know it will support the skills needed to showcase for the role in question.
  • They’ll be able to demonstrate the ability to solve issues and find solutions.
  • Can demonstrate their own ability to take direction, criticism and feedback on their personal progression too.
  • They’ll be able to give a step-by-step process of how they achieve their goals clearly. Results-driven people will often use their same technique for reaching for goals across different situations in different areas of their life.


Results-driven individuals are like gold dust to recruiters.

Creating a team that can all work proactively towards the company goal is a skill that can drive companies forward and reach new heights.

A team filled with lowly motivated individuals who don’t care for the organisation needs a strong leader who can motivate, inspire, and drive employees to improve. So include a drive for results interview questions in your recruitment processes if you’re looking for successful leaders.

For more examples on answering behavioural-based interview questions, see our post on the STAR technique for interviewing. You’ll see an instructional guide on answering competency interview questions from the perspective of a candidate. This will help your recruitment team recognise what touchpoints are important in an interview answer.

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We’ll see you next time.

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