How to Answer 'What Type of Work Environment Do You Prefer?'

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In an interview, some questions can really throw you off balance. That’s why it’s important to prepare properly, and expect a lot of different questions. Although some questions may not seem relevant regarding the prospective position, the interviewer may be focusing on various aspects of your personality or experience.

You may not even realise what you’re telling them with your answer. For example, this question is not designed to find out if you would love to have a slide in your office. Instead, it is often used by interviewers to see how enthusiastic you are about the company and role to see how well you’d fit into the current team. So you need to give a positive and strong answer. I mean does anyone want to work with a negative person?

Your work environment has a lot to do with the success of a company. If you work poorly in a group environment, then you may not be seen as a good fit for a company that does a lot of group projects. The skills and personality you bring to a work environment should increase productivity and success. That is what your interviewer will be looking for. So, how do you answer: “What type of work environment do you prefer?”

Tip 1

Answer just as you would when you’re asked what your ideal job is. Let the interviewer know that the environment you’re applying for is the type of environment you’d prefer and thrive in.


“I am not just looking to fill a position; I’m looking for a career. I applied to this position not only because it fits my skill-set, but because I believe that I would excel within this work environment. I am confident in my ability to work within a team and on my own. As your company encourages both solo and group efforts, I believe that this is the perfect environment for me.”

You need to adapt your answer to whatever work environment you’re applying for. If you’re applying to be a heat engineer for instance, you may have a totally different answer. You could say:

“I have always been a leader and I believe that this work environment would allow me to thrive. I am very focused and interact well with others. Not only could I lead a team of employees, but I would be highly personable with clients.”

Tip 2

If you do not know exactly what the work environment is like, make sure you show flexibility and a willingness to experience new things.


“In the past, I preferred a fast-paced working environment, but I also love to experience new things. Whenever I experience something new, I learn something valuable. New environments are a way to develop new, vital skills.”

You can even ask, “what is the work environment like here?” Based on their answer, you may get a better idea if the position will be something that you’ll truly like and do well in. If they say that the environment is highly technology-based, you may realise that it’s not the position for you. On the other hand, you may become thrilled, adding additional information to your answer. The answer you provide can relate to your past experiences. This will show them enthusiasm and potential.

So, if you have an upcoming interview, focus on your past work environments and which environments you excel in. If you have a rough idea of what the work environment is like, make sure you provide an answer that increases your chances of success. Match your experiences and abilities to that environment; showing the interviewer that you bring something to the table. Stay calm, focused, and confident. If you’re prepared and composed during an interview, you’re more likely to get the job.

See also: How to Answer the Top 10 Air Hostess Interview Questions

Have you ever answered this question the right or wrong way? Let us know in the comments section below…