Non-tech interview questions you'll be asked at Google and Amazon

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Bikes at Googleplex - Google Headquarters

Getting a high-level job at tech giants like Google and Amazon doesn’t necessarily require an engineering degree or the ability to code. Product managers, typically MBAs with analytical, financial modeling and managerial skills, are integral parts of every large tech company’s success. These jobs are highly sought after but also rather challenging, given the number of hats you’ll have to wear and the fact that you’ll be interfacing with almost every level of the organization, from developers to people in the C-suite.

Getting a job as a product manager at Google or Amazon can be extremely difficult, due to the competition but also the exhaustive interview process. You’ll be faced with analytical, hypothetical and personal questions to see if you have the soft skills to accompany those on your resume. Below are interview questions that were recently asked of graduating MBAs by both Google and Amazon. You’ll notice they’re not outlandish brain teasers. Each company appears to simply want to know how you’d react in real-life situations that face PMs on a daily basis.

Amazon

If you were working on Amazon Prime, would you change the price of a membership? How would you decide to do this and how would you measure the impact?

[For this product you worked on this summer], how did you execute it? Convince me that Amazon should go ahead with this product. Now tell me why we shouldn't do it.

Tell me three features that your product needs to work. Tell me which one you would include for a minimum viable product (MVP).

Give an example where you used data to make actionable recommendations.

If you launched Amazon Fresh, what are a few of the key metrics you'd consider to present to Jeff Bezos one year after the launch on the health of the business?

If 3 VPs come to you with different projects, how do you decide which one to choose?

They described a product for Kindle – where you can get more in-depth info from the community on a character by clicking on an icon in the book – and asked me how I would decide if this was a good product to launch, how I'd test it, what features I'd pursue.

Google

Why does Google invest in the Chrome browser? How can we attribute Google's revenues to Chrome? Estimate the attributable revenues.

What should keep Larry and Sergey up at night? Is Google on the right track?

How would you launch a product like local search? What are the considerations, risks? How would you elicit the support of partners? How would you check for fraud?

Give me an example how you might increase Google's revenues.

Which is your favorite course at [business school]? Which is the least favorite? Why did you pick these?

What does your previous manager think of you, and be specific? How do you handle feedback?

Have a confidential story, tip, or comment you’d like to share? Contact: btuttle@efinancialcareers.com

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