9 essential interview questions to help you find the perfect ECEC leader

by Sandy Bevan, Service Delivery & Development Manager, Community Child Care Association

August 22, 2019

Your service is only as strong as its leadership. Finding a good fit for the coordinator/supervisor role is make or break for establishing professionalism and setting a path towards excellence.

 

First, you’ll need to get a sense of how well the candidate understands the frameworks. Every coordinator and nominated supervisor should be comfortable discussing these.

 

  • How will you evaluate the quality of our service?
  • How will you ensure we are continually improving?

 

A working knowledge of their child safety obligations is non-negotiable.

 

  • How will you ensure regulations, policies and procedures are followed in our setting?
  • What do you think being a child safe organisation means, and what will your responsibilities be as manager/supervisor?

 

Relationship-building is a must-have for any coordinator or nominated supervisor.

 

  • How will you promote effective partnerships with parents/carers?
  • How will you ensure that educators feel their opinions are valued?

 

Finally, you’ll want someone who isn’t afraid to have tricky conversations – with families and staff.

 

  • Can you describe a time when you experienced conflict with a parent, and how you dealt with it?
  • Can you give us an example of when you have dealt with a disciplinary/grievance issue relating to the staff at your setting?
  • How will you be supportive whilst challenging staff practice day-to-day?

 

Don’t forget referees! A Working with Children’s Check is only the minimum. When you call referees, make sure you ask them about the candidate’s previous work with children and check whether they have directly observed or supervised the candidate.

 

My #1 tip:

 

Hire new staff based on your unique context. Is staff turnover a major challenge? Ask the candidate about their experience building teams, supporting staff development and managing staff retention.

 

Good luck!

 

This article has been adapted from an interview published in the Spring 2019 edition of Roundtable magazine, and has been adapted with author permission.

 

The original article will be made available on the archive section of the CCCA website, and can be accessed here in future.

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