How to answer ‘how would you deal with a difficult co-worker’ interview question

In this article you will learn how to answer this really difficult interview question, “How would you deal with a difficult co-worker.”

If you have a job interview coming up soon for any role or organization, make sure you read this article from start to end because it will give you the perfect answer.

How would you deal with a difficult co-worker interview question    

To help you pass your job interview, this article will cover the following three things:

  • Reasons why the hiring manager is asking you the interview question. Because if you understand why the question is being asked, it enables you to give the perfect answer.
  • The best way to answer this difficult interview question that is guaranteed to impress the hiring manager. Remember, if you answer this question incorrectly, you will not pass your job interview.
  • Brilliant top-scoring answer to this job interview question.


The hiring manager is asking this interview question because they want to hear you say you will take positive action to improve the working relationship with the difficult co-worker.

If you are a mature and professional employee who genuinely wants their business to be successful, you will do all you can to improve the situation, regardless of how difficult your co-worker is.

Bad Answers to this interview question, how would you deal with a difficult co-worker

“I would ask my manager to deal with the difficult co-worker because at the end of the day I’m not paid to manage staff.”

Please do not use that answer when responding to the difficult interview question, How would you deal with a difficult co-worker?

But how do you answer it without failing your interview?


The best way to answer the interview question, how would you deal with the difficult co-worker, is to say the following 3 things in your answer:

  1. Is to say you would assess your own actions to make sure you weren’t CONTRIBUTING NEGATIVELY to the situation.
  2. Is to say you would then sit down in private with your co-worker to find a compromise so the working relationship can be productive and positive.
  3. Is to say that you would try and work closely with them on a project or task to build a better connection so you can then both help the company achieve its mission.

“How would you deal with a difficult co-worker” Sample Answer

Let now look at a brilliant example answer to this interview question.

Question: How would you deal with a difficult co-worker?

Example Answer:

“I would deal with a difficult co-worker by first of all making sure I wasn’t contributing negatively to the situation.

I would then sit down with the co-worker in private to find an amicable way forward, and I would establish what was important to them.

I would then try and build a connection with my co-worker and see if I could even work closely with them on a project or a task to improve the working relationship.

Because at the end of the day we are employees of the company and we both have a duty to collaborate professionally and do all we can to help our employer achieve their objectives.”

There’s a brilliant response that’s guaranteed to help you pass your interview.

Thank you so much for reading this guide and I wish you all the best for passing your interview.

by Scholars Hub

Scholars Hub is a site created for Scholars, to guide you write professional CV, professional Resume, Biodata, Common Interview Questions and Answers. is NOT awarding scholarships, is NOT an employment site, NOT recruiter or agency or third party, and is NOT directly or indirectly involve in any stage of recruitment or employment. We don’t charge anything for any information shared in this site.

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