Are you preparing for an upcoming interview and have come across the question, ‘give an example of an occasion when you used logic to solve a problem?’
For some reason you can’t think of a straightforward answer. You’re not alone.
Most candidates prepare for interview questions that focus on teamwork, communication, professionalism, and work ethic.
They rarely get ready for questions that exhibit their critical thinking and problem-solving skills and this is one question interviewers use to find out about such skills.
How do you go about answering this question? We’ll lay it all out here. Keep reading to find out.
- Why Do Interviewers Ask, “Give an Example of an Occasion When You Used Logic to Solve a Problem”?
- How to Answer Give an Example of an Occasion When You Used Logic to Solve a Problem
- Example Answers to Consider
- Additional Tips for Impressing an Interviewer Asking Give an Example of An Occasion When You Used Logic to Solve a Problem
- Additional Questions to be Aware Of
- Frequently Asked Questions
- Wrapping Up
Why Do Interviewers Ask, “Give an Example of an Occasion When You Used Logic to Solve a Problem”?
Hiring managers ask this question to determine if a candidate has problem-solving and critical-thinking skills at the workplace.
They want to know if you can solve a problem that’s out of your regular duties.
Interviewers value employees who can solve problems quickly using only their reasoning.
Your response determines if you can benefit the department and the company at large. So, what does the interviewer want to hear in your answer?
What is the Interviewer Looking For?
Below are some of the things the hiring manager wants to know when they ask you to give an example of an occasion when you used logic to solve a problem:
You want to show actionable steps taken to solve the problem.
They should be as detailed as possible to avoid generalizations or vagueness. A good rule of thumb is to find a balance between consciousness and detail.
Therefore, if you’re telling a story, you must provide details the interviewer can relate to the use of logic to solve the problem.
Proven Track Record of Solving Problems
If you have a proven track record in addressing challenges that require you to use reasoning.
For example, if you’re a project manager, you should be able to handle deadline changes.
And if you’re a customer service representative, you should be able to deal with an angry customer. However, they are more interested in the thought process, rather than the final solution.
The only way to demonstrate your problem-solving ability is to provide an example.
The example must be solid and relevant to the job description. You must avoid making boring answers or general statements because you won’t be answering problem-solving interview questions.
How to Answer Give an Example of an Occasion When You Used Logic to Solve a Problem
When answering this question, the main objective is to demonstrate your adaptability skills to situations or challenges.
Blunt answers and made-up stories won’t cut it. In fact, the interviewer can easily determine made-up stories because you’re likely to fumble along the way.
What to Focus on When Answer this Question
As such, you want to focus on these three points:
Relate the Example to the Job Description
You’re not just providing examples demonstrating critical thinking or problem-solving skills, but you want to relate them to the current role.
You can review the job description to understand the type of work and how your skills fit in the new role.
Connect the example to the job’s description to help the interviewer visualize you in that role.
For example, if you were a project manager in your previous position and your team had a time management problem (always missing deadlines) but managed to solve the problem.
The hiring manager will see your ability to analyze the existing processes to identify the cause of the delays and how you solved it.
Structure Your Answer Using the STAR Interview Method
You don’t just want to narrate a story when you’re told to provide an example.
It needs a logical flow with a beginning, middle and ending to make it easy for the interviewer to pick on critical details.
The Star interview technique helps you structure it as such:
- You first provide the context of the example (Situation)
- Then explain the objective you needed to achieve (Task)
- Describe the actions you took to realize the goal (Action)
- Explain if you achieved the goal (Result) and the lessons you learned along the way
Incorporate Numbers to Show Credibility
It’s easier to narrate a made-up story, especially if you’ve practiced the answer for a while.
Although believable, the story doesn’t make you stand out from other job seekers. Throwing in numbers, dates, and other details makes your story reasonable and practical.
What to Avoid When Answering this Question
When answering the question, “Give an example of an occasion when you used logic to solve a problem?,” you must avoid:
- Using an example that showcases other skills more than logical reasoning
- Mentioning an overly complex example that loses the point of your logical reasoning
- Making the example too personal or more about you than the logical problem solving
Example Answers to Consider
Although your response largely depends on work experiences you’ve had in the past, here are three examples that could help you develop a suitable response:
In my previous job, I worked as an analyst for a large retail store. Towards the end of Q3, I realized some data was missing, which was critical to making the next quarter’s forecast.
Being the pandemic period, there was much unpredictability in the market. Since forecasting is the foundation of every other activity in the store, I decided to apply models we had used in the past to generate a Q4’s forecast.
I made reasonable adjustments, too, to account for the market’s unpredictability. Towards the end of quarter 4 I noticed there wasn’t much variance between the forecasted numbers and the actual results.
Why This Answer Works
In this example, the candidate is applying for an executive position requiring forecasting and analyzing discrepancies.
To illustrate their problem-solving skills, their response is centered around an experience that required them to think on their feet and provide a solution.
The solution worked in their favor, indicative of their credibility in their problem-solving and critical thinking skills.
I’ve held many interviews as an HR manager, but I remember one in particular. I had shortlisted three candidates who seemed to have met all the qualifications for the advertised position.
Since I only needed one candidate, I invited the department manager to help me choose the ideal candidate. After calling the candidates for two more interviews, I decided to pick one.
The manager brought a fresh perspective about the ideal candidate and cited reasons he was the best for the position.
Why This Answer Works
In this example, the candidate explains the problem (choosing the ideal candidate for the job) and how they solved it (inviting more managers to help choose the best candidate).
It’s a clear demonstration of their problem-solving and decision-making skills. The candidate used reason to realize that one opinion could be a biased method to choose someone, so the candidate asked for a second opinion.
Also, the candidate uses the STAR technique to narrate the story.
I’ve been an SEO expert and have worked with different companies.
Gardening at Your Doorstep is one company where I oversaw the marketing department. When I first joined the company, I was tasked with auditing a recent advertising campaign based in its hometown and surrounding towns.
According to my assessment, the company had spent a significant amount advertising in surrounding towns without much return.
By comparison, the advertising campaign launched in its hometown was much more effective. Based on this information, I decided to focus my digital marketing efforts on the company’s hometown, including developing locally optimized content.
The strategy was successful and had long-term benefits because the company gained a loyal clientele over time.
Why This Example Works
The candidate uses an example related to his role as a marketer. Then he explains how he used logic to go back to previous processes that had worked for the company, and used the data gathered to generate a better strategy.
Ultimately, the solution helped the company realize its long-term goals (having a loyal customer base).
Additional Tips for Impressing an Interviewer Asking Give an Example of An Occasion When You Used Logic to Solve a Problem
In addition to using the STAR technique, relating your answer to the job description and incorporating numbers, here are other tips you can use to impress the interviewer:
Find Out About the Values of the Company
Research the company to find out its values, beliefs, and mission statement. This information may help you construct an adequate response.
For example, if the company values honesty, you can highlight instances where you exhibited this trait in your previous assignment.
Practice How to Answer the Question
When answering, ‘give an example of an occasion when you used logic to solve a problem?’ it’s tempting to give a long answer just to drive in the point. It shouldn’t be the case.
You want to practice answering the question ahead of time to avoid giving incoherent answers.
Think about the experience you want to talk about, develop a response, and practice answering it in different ways. You may ask a friend to help you out.
The premise of this question is to demonstrate how well you managed a difficult situation. As such, you must avoid focusing on its adverse effects or outcomes and emphasize your problem-solving skills.
Maintain a positive attitude when explaining the problem and highlight how your actions solved it and yielded favorable results.
Additional Questions to be Aware Of
As hard as it can be to answer “Give An Example Of An Occasion When You Used Logic To Solve A Problem” you should consider other questions that could pose a challenge too:
- Describe Your Work Ethic: Interviewers ask this question to determine your contribution to the company
- How Do You Handle Stress?: A hiring manager wants to know how you respond to challenges that come with the job
- Explain Why Your Background and Experience is Good for This Job: Your interviewer also wants to find out what makes you stand out from other candidates
- What is Your Work Style?: A hiring manager will ask this question when they want to understand your character. Are you a leader, team player, and detail-oriented?
- Do You Have Any Questions for Me? A candidate is also expected to ask questions to show interest and enthusiasm for the job
Frequently Asked Questions
Knowing why interviewers ask, “give an example of an occasion when you used logic to solve a problem?” is essential.
However, you could also be wondering:
What Does it Mean to Use Logic to Solve the Problem?
When you use logic to solve a problem, you use reasoning skills to comprehend it, break it down into proper steps, identify solutions and execute them.
What is an Example of a Logical Problem?
A good example of a logical problem requires you to use critical thinking to identify it, reason, and use problem-solving skills to solve it.
The next time an interviewer asks, “give an example of an occasion when you used logic to solve a problem?” you won’t fumble words.
You will demonstrate your ability to solve unanticipated problems at the workplace using previous experiences.
Once you know they want you to showcase your problem-solving and critical-thinking skills, you can highlight the steps you used to solve the problem and how you achieved the desired outcome.