How Did You Resolve Disagreement with Your Boss/Professor?

Binay Srivastava
4 min readMay 7, 2022


Dear Young Friends,

How are we?

We know for sure: all working souls have faced one or more job interviews. They know that interviewers put the same question in different ways. They use different words for the same question.

Take for example, the question “How did you resolve disagreement with your boss/professor?”

Interviewers can ask the same question in various ways using different terminology:

1. How do you handle disagreements?

2. What do you do if you disagree with someone else?

3. In a contentious scenario, do you open up or shut down?

4. How do you deal with disagreements?

This scenario doesn’t apply to new school/college pass outs who are enter the job force. Such candidates have never faced any interview. As such, they should prepare themselves to understand the question first before speaking out their answer. They can take a few seconds in framing their reply. Interviewers won’t come in the way. Interpret the question carefully, choose words wisely and speak out confidently but with humility. In interviews there is no right or wrong answer.

Why is this question being asked by the interviewer?

The interviewer is searching for information that would not generally be included on a résumé or as part of a regular interview response — how the applicant handles conflict. Many otherwise great workers have suffered as a result of how they managed (or did not manage) conflict. Because the interviewer is aware that most applicants will not produce genuine conflict scenarios, the skilled interviewer will continue to drill until a genuine example is offered.

The best way to answer this question is:

Discuss the issue briefly, but with an emphasis on its settlement. Give a genuine example of a resolved dispute, talking through the scenario that sparked the disagreement, the activities you did to settle the conflict, and the outcome.

For an experienced applicant, here is an example of how to appropriately respond to this question:

“I recently had a conflict with an employee in another department who had a project that was dependent on work done by two members of our team. He had sent a rather urgent e-mail accusing us of derailing his project. I had never met him before, so I asked to meet with him for coffee. I asked him to walk me through his project and the interdependence of his project with our project. I then walked him through our project and timelines.”

For an entry-level applicant, here is an example of how to appropriately respond to this question:

“I recently had a disagreement with one of my professors over the wording of a question on one of the key exams, which was missed by several members of the class due to the ambiguity. I brought it up to the professor privately and personally, but he was dismissive of my request. After discussing it with several classmates, we went to him together to discuss it further. At that point, he agreed that there was some ambiguity in the question, but would not change it.”

Here’s an example of how you shouldn’t respond to this question:

“I’ve always found that I need to show the other person the error of their ways in detail, and then they will eventually come around to seeing my way as the best way to do things.” “Do I have conflict? Sure. But having conflict is a healthy thing. In fact, I grew up in a family where conflict was a way of life. I got battered and bruised growing up that way, but I learned how to come out swinging and make my way in the world.”

The question, “How Did You Resolve Disagreement with Your Employer/Professor?” has been answered in the very convincing manner. If you take a cue from the answers given above, you will win over the interviewer’s opinion in your favor.

There are many such questions in the book, each designed to test your skills, caliber, personality, behavior, and psychological mental makeup besides your knowledge of your subject/profession.

If you are a fresh candidate, the questions are relatively simple. Different types of responses are expected from experienced candidates depending upon their expertise.

If you want to master ways how to answer a variety of questions, such as

1. How did you resolve disagreement with your boss/professor?

2. Why should we hire you?

3. What is your greatest strength?

4. What is your greatest weakness?

And many other questions to strengthen your answering capabilities,

If you want jobs to chase you, then please read the book

“Impressive Answers to Job Interview Questions — For Fresh and Experienced Candidates”

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I hope the book will give you strength and confidence to let you sail through the interview board successfully.

Your friend in deed,




Binay Srivastava

I am Binay, writer, author, and editor. I am an electrical engineering graduate.,, and many newspapers have published my articles.