Interview Assignment



EGR 402

Combined Interview Writing Assignment

Two per group


Interview someone (15 to 30 minutes) who is working (or retired) in private industry in a supervisory, managerial, or executive capacity and ask them the questions. Do not interview someone from the non-profit, government, or education sectors including professors. Summarize your findings in a three or more page paper concentrating on what you learned that was especially valuable to you and new at the end of the paper¦Do not just repeat what you were told.



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Example: I asked Mr. Smith where or not it is OK to break the chain of command. He told me a few personal stories and then gave me some advice. I learned that if I am faced with a similar situation, here are some of the things I could do or should do, etc., etc


  1. This assignment may be completed by students as individuals or by working together in two-person teams.  Please note:  if this is completed as a two-person assignment, BOTH persons must be present for the interview and both must make substantive contributions to the paper.
  2. At the beginning of the paper identify the position and type of company of the person you interviewed.
  3. Select from the list below of suggested questions to ask the person during the interview or supplement the questions with your own questions.
  4. Think about the response to the asked questions and document those in the paper.
  5. ¦

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  6. Characterize the decision-making process of the interviewee, based on the moral theories we’ve studied.
         Think through the responses of the interviewee and make your best assessment as to which moral theories or framework(s) seem to characterize their decision making (e.g., utilitarian, deontological, virtue, and existentialist ethics). You should pick a few questions from the list (or make up your own) that would be helpful in inferring how the person works through moral dilemmas when they occur. Briefly explain the theory and then provide reasons and examples to show that the interviewee would correctly be characterized as you claim.
  7. Submit your paper by the date due as indicated above.  No late papers will be accepted.
  8. You should have ample time to find someone and interview them. Three pages minimum double spaced and use spell check.



Potential Interview Questions or make up your own questions.


  1. Do you think that most employees are ethical?
  2. Have you ever felt pressured by your current or a previous employer to violate your sense of ethics?
  3. Under what circumstances, if any, do you think an employee should break the chain-of-command to report something they think is wrong?
  4. ¦

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  5. Do you currently operate under a policy that enforces work place ethics and insures the safety of employees (and customers?)?
  6. Have you ever experienced a moral dilemma that involved human lives or put your career at risk?
  7. What do you think is appropriate disciplinary action for employees that practice unethical behavior (such as signing other employee’s names on documents or revealing confidential information)?
  8. If you were in a position to be a œwhistleblower, how would you go about protecting yourself from ruining your reputation completely?
  9. What is a higher priority (for you? for your company?): making profits or the safety and satisfaction of the consumer?
  10. Do you think that your company has a certain value they place on human life when they are making decisions regarding safety?
  11. Should an engineer sign off on a design they have not 100% checked personally?
  12. Knowing everything that goes on in your job, are you satisfied with the way moral and ethical situations are handled? Why or Why not.
  13. What is the hardest ethical decision you have ever made related to your engineering career.
  14. What is your opinion about how an employee should go about reporting something illegal or unsafe they see going on within a company?
  15. Where do you draw the line regarding how much to spend on safety?
  16. As an executive, how you ever have to reconcile your personal moral convictions with those of your company, associates and/or employees? If so, how do you handle it?
  17. What advice would you give to a young professional about dating people at work or within the organization?
  18. What importance does your employer place on integrity and ethical behavior in evaluating new employees?
  19. How does your company evaluate applicants to assess their integrity?
  20. What advice would you give to a young professional about how to handle a situation where they believe they are asked to do something they feel is immoral, unsafe, or illegal?
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