Learn the common Chipotle interview questions and prepare for your upcoming job interview.
Chipotle is a popular chain of restaurants that offer Mexican-style cuisine, such as burritos, tacos, and bowls. The company is known for its commitment to using high-quality, fresh ingredients, including produce and meats that are sourced locally and raised without the use of antibiotics or hormones.
In addition to serving food, Chipotle also places a strong emphasis on sustainability and environmental responsibility. For example, they use eco-friendly packaging that is either recyclable or biodegradable, and they support local and organic farms. Chipotle has locations in countries worldwide, including the United States, Canada, France, Germany, and the United Kingdom.
Chipotle Interview Questions & Interview Process
The Chipotle interview process starts with applying for a job. You can fill out an online application or submit your resume in person at a Chipotle location. After submitting your resume, recruiters will assess and screen your application to see if you’re a good fit for the job.
The Chipotle interview process typically involves several steps, including
- Phone screening
- In-person interview
- Background check
Once you have passed the background check, you will begin training to learn the skills and knowledge you need to succeed in your position at Chipotle. The training process typically includes both in-person training at a Chipotle location and online training modules.
Note: Depending on the specific role you are applying for, and the location where you will be working, the exact interview process may vary.
If you have been invited to a Chipotle interview, it’s wise to prepare for a combination of skills-related and behavioral interview questions. This article will give you an overview of the top Chipotle interview questions and answers to prepare you for your interview.
Related: Phone interview questions and answers
Top 20 Chipotle Interview Questions and Answers
Below you will find a list of the most commonly asked Chipotle interview questions and answers. It’s important to prepare for these questions by thinking about past experiences and how they relate to the skills and qualities Chipotle values in its employees. Be prepared to provide specific examples and explain how you handled the situation in a way that demonstrates your ability to handle challenges and provide excellent customer service.
1. Why do you want to work at Chipotle?
Interviewers ask this question to understand your motivation for applying for a job at Chipotle and to see if you have done your research on the company and its values. Use this question to emphasize your interest in working for Chipotle and to demonstrate that you are a good fit for the company culture.
Example: ‘I am interested in working at Chipotle because I believe that the company’s values align with my own personal values. Chipotle is known for its commitment to using fresh, high-quality ingredients and for its focus on sustainability and ethical sourcing. These are values that are important to me, and I appreciate that Chipotle strongly emphasizes them. Additionally, I have always had a passion for food and enjoy working in a fast-paced, customer-facing environment. I believe that working at Chipotle would allow me to combine my passions and values while also providing me with an opportunity to learn and grow as a professional. I am excited about the potential to be a part of a team that is dedicated to delivering an exceptional dining experience to customers.’
2. What do you know about Chipotle and our values?
This is similar to the first question about why you want to work for Chipotle. Show that you have taken time to research the company and its values and that you understand how these values contribute to the company’s culture and success.
Example: ‘I have done my research on Chipotle and am familiar with the company’s values and mission. Chipotle is known for its commitment to using fresh, high-quality ingredients and for its focus on sustainability and ethical sourcing. The company also values transparency, innovation, and teamwork and has a strong commitment to providing excellent customer service. These values align with my own personal values and I believe that they are important for creating a positive and successful business. I am attracted to Chipotle’s values and believe they play a key role in its success and reputation.
3. What customer service experience do you have?
Customer service skills are essential when you work for Chipotle, as you are often the first point of contact for customers. Interviewers are looking for candidates who are able to handle a variety of customer inquiries, but also complaints. Demonstrate that you are professional, patient and empathetic.
Example: ‘I have five years of experience in customer service roles. My most recent position was as a customer service representative at a tech company, where I handled customer inquiries and complaints via phone, email, and chat. I was responsible for troubleshooting technical issues, assisting with account management, and providing product information to customers. Before that, I worked in a retail store, where I assisted customers with product selection, provided information about sales and promotions, and processed transactions. In these roles, I have learned to be patient, empathetic, and solution-oriented, and I have developed strong communication skills and the ability to work under pressure.’
Related: Customer service interview questions and answers
4. How do you handle a difficult customer?
Interviewers ask this question to assess your customer service skills. Dealing with unhappy customers and other challenging situations is an important part of any job. The interviewers are trying to understand your approach to problem-solving and conflict resolution.
Example: ‘I believe that it is important to approach every customer interaction with empathy and a willingness to listen and understand their needs. When dealing with a difficult customer, I try to remain calm and patient to focus on finding a solution to their problem. One time, I had a customer who was extremely unhappy with the service they received at our restaurant. They were yelling and causing a scene, and several other customers were also starting to get upset.
Rather than getting defensive or upset, I tried to remain calm and listen to their concerns. I apologized for the inconvenience and offered to comp their meal as a gesture of goodwill. I also asked if there was anything else I could do to resolve the issue and make their experience better. The customer eventually calmed down and accepted my apology and offer. By staying calm and offering a solution, I defused the situation and resolved the issue to the customer’s satisfaction. I believe that this approach helped maintain our business’s integrity and prevent the situation from escalating further.’
Related: Conflict resolution interview questions and answers
5. How do you handle a situation when you are overwhelmed with customers?
Interviewers ask this question to learn more about your ability to handle stressful situations and problem-solving skills. Customer service roles often involve working under pressure and dealing with challenging situations. The best way to answer this type of question is by giving an example of a time you successfully used your stress management and problem-solving skills.
Example: ‘In my previous position, I was working as a sales associate at a busy retail store during the holiday season. There were long lines at the registers, and customers were getting frustrated with the wait times. I noticed that one of my colleagues was struggling to keep up with the customer demand at their register, so I quickly went over to assist them. I started by greeting each customer with a smile and apologizing for the delay. To speed up the process, I then quickly and efficiently processed their purchases, making sure to thank them for their patience. I also kept an eye on the overall customer flow and proactively called for additional assistance when needed. By staying calm and focused, I was able to help keep the lines moving and prevent the situation from escalating.’
Related: Stress Management interview questions and answers
6. What would you do if you were running late for a shift?
This question is asked to assess your level of professionalism and your ability to handle unexpected challenges or setbacks. If you’re being late or even miss a shift, this can have serious consequences for the business. It’s therefore important that you answer this question professionally, demonstrating that you can deal with such situations.
Example: ‘It never happened to me before, but if I were running late for a shift, I would first inform my supervisor or manager of the situation. I would explain the circumstances that led to my delay and provide an estimated arrival time. I would also offer to stay late or come in earlier the next day to make up for the lost time if needed. Next, I would seek assistance from a colleague in completing any tasks that need to be finished before my shift ends, and I would apologize for the inconvenience and reassure my supervisor that I am taking steps to ensure that it does not happen again in the future.’
7. How do you handle a mistake during an order?
Mistakes are made everywhere, and this question is asked to assess how well you handle difficult situations and customer complaints. Handling mistakes and complaints effectively is an important skill in the food industry as it helps to maintain customer satisfaction. Therefore, ensure that you discuss how you would handle such a situation and showcase your customer service skills.
Example: ‘If I make a mistake during an order, my first priority is to make sure that the customer’s needs are met and that they are satisfied. I would apologize for the mistake and offer to remake the order to their liking, ensuring that it is correct this time. If the mistake resulted in the customer not receiving their order fast enough, I would also offer them compensation, such as a discount or a free side item, to apologize for any inconvenience. I would then inform my supervisor of the mistake so that we can review what happened and take steps to prevent similar mistakes in the future.’
8. How do you handle a co-worker who is not pulling their weight?
A lack of contribution can become a problem in a professional setting. It’s, therefore important that you are able to address such situations professionally and respectfully. Interviewers look for an answer that demonstrates your ability to approach a situation with empathy and a desire to find a resolution. Furthermore, emphasize that you are aware of the importance of teamwork and that you are willing to involve a supervisor if this is necessary.
Example: ‘If I notice that a co-worker is not pulling their weight, my first approach would be to try to communicate with them and understand if there is any specific reason for their lack of productivity. I would try to be supportive and offer to help in any way that I can. If the issue persists and it is affecting the team’s overall performance, I would inform my supervisor of the situation and seek their guidance on how to handle it best. I believe in the importance of teamwork and would do my best to ensure that all team members contribute to the best of their ability.’
9. Tell me about a time when you had to work as part of a team.
Interview questions about teamwork are common Chipotle interview questions. Chipotle interviewers are interested in your ability to work well with others and if you can take on a leadership role when this is necessary. Give them an answer that shows that you are able to adapt to a fast-paced and challenging work environment. Your goal is to explain that you are able to work effectively as part of a team to achieve a common goal.
Example: ‘In my previous position, I always worked in a team setting. A recent example of a time I worked successfully as part of a team was when I had to work during a busy evening shift at the fast food restaurant where I was working. We were short-staffed and had a lot of orders coming in during dinner time hours, so it was important that everyone worked together efficiently to keep up with the demand. I took on a leadership role and helped coordinate my team members’ efforts, delegating tasks and ensuring that everyone was clear on their responsibilities. We were able to work together effectively and get through the shift smoothly, and I felt proud of the way we supported each other and worked as a team.’
Related: Teamwork interview questions and answers
10. Tell me about a time when you had to handle a problem or conflict with a co-worker.
Handling conflict and problems effectively is an important skill in any job, as it is for a position at Chipotle. These skills help to maintain a positive work environment and ensure that tasks are completed on time and efficiently. Interviewers want to get an answer that includes these skills that demonstrate that you have a constructive and professional attitude.
Example: ‘I remember a specific time when I had to handle a problem with a co-worker when we had a disagreement over the way that a task should be completed. I listened to her perspective and tried to understand where she was coming from, and then explained my own perspective and the reasons why I thought a different approach might be more effective. We were able to come to a compromise and find a solution that worked for both of us. I learned that it is important to be open to other people’s ideas and to approach conflicts with a willingness to listen and find a mutually beneficial resolution.’
11. Describe a time when you had to work under pressure.
Working at restaurants such as Chipotle can be stressful at times because of the fast-paced work environment. Interiverwes ask this question to assess whether or not you can remain calm and focused under pressure. Give them an answer showing that you can adapt to a challenging work environment and stay focused.
Example: ‘An example of a time when I had to perform well under pressure was during a particularly busy shift at the fast food restaurant where I was working. We had a long line of customers waiting to place their orders, and we needed to work quickly and efficiently to keep up with the demand. I remained calm and focused and could multitask effectively to ensure that all orders were prepared correctly and served on time. I also made sure to communicate clearly with my team members and delegate tasks as needed to ensure that we were able to meet the demands of the shift. Despite the pressure, I could stay focused and complete all of my tasks successfully.’
12. Tell me about a time when you had to make a difficult decision.
Interviewers ask this question to assess whether or not you can make difficult decisions in a professional and customer-focused way. Give them an example that shows that you are able to consider options and weigh potential consequences in order to make a decision that is in the best interest of both the business and the customer.
Example: ‘One time I had to make a difficult decision was when I was working at my previous employer in a fast food restaurant, and we ran out of a popular menu item. We had several customers who were requesting the item and were disappointed when we told them that it was no longer available. I had to decide whether to turn them away and risk losing their business or to offer them an alternative menu item. After considering the options and weighing the potential consequences, I decided to offer the customers alternative menu items and provide them with a discount as a gesture of goodwill. This decision helped to maintain customer satisfaction and prevent any negative impact on the business.’
13. Describe a time when you had to handle a complaint from a customer.
Dealing with customer complaints in a professional and customer-focused is an essential skill. Interviewers want to hear from you that you are able to listen to the concerns of customers and that you take appropriate steps to address the problem to make the customers happy. Demonstrate to the interviewer that you have good problem-solving skills and can adapt to unexpected situations in a positive and effective way.
Example: ‘One time when I had to handle a complaint from a customer was when I was working at a restaurant, and a customer received their order with the wrong condiments. They were unhappy and expressed their dissatisfaction to me. I apologized for the mistake and offered to remake the order to their liking. I also offered them a discount as a gesture of goodwill. The customer was satisfied with this resolution and left the restaurant happy. I learned the importance of listening to customer complaints and taking steps to address their concerns in a timely and effective manner.’
14. Describe a time when you had to go above and beyond for a customer.
Interviewers ask this question to assess your ability to provide excellent customer service and if you go above and beyond to meet a customer’s needs. Show them that you are willing to put in extra effort to ensure that the customer is satisfied and their needs are met.
Example: ‘An example of a time when I had to go above and beyond for a customer was when I was working at a restaurant, and a customer came in with a large order for a party. They were in a rush and needed the order to be ready in a short amount of time. For me, this was a great opportunity to demonstrate to this customer that we were up for the task.
I ensured that the order was prepared to the customer’s exact specifications and ready for pickup in time for their party. I also offered them a discount as a gesture of goodwill because they ordered so much at once. The customer was extremely satisfied with their experience and thanked me for my excellent service. They also left a great review on our website. This experience taught me the importance of going above and beyond to meet the needs of our customers.’
15. Tell me about a time when you had to handle a difficult situation.
Interviewers ask this question to see your approach to handling difficult or challenging work situations. Demonstrate your ability to remain calm and customer-focused in your answers, even when faced with angry or upset customers.
Example: ‘When I was working at a restaurant, a customer became upset and angry because their order was not prepared to their liking. They were raising their voice and were causing a scene. It was important that I diffused the situation and kept the situation under control. I listened to the customer’s concerns and apologized for the mistake, and then offered to remake the order to their liking. I also offered them a discount as a goodwill gesture. This helped to calm the customer down and resolve the situation. I learned the importance of staying calm and professional in difficult situations and finding ways to meet the customer’s needs.’
16. Tell me about a time when you had to make a tough choice.
Interviewers ask this question to assess if you are able to make tough choices when needed. Ensure that your answer demonstrates that you can prioritize, such as the well-being of a coworker and the needs of the business. Show them that are able to consider different options and weigh potential consequences in order to make a decision that is in the best interest of the business and the customer.
Example: ‘One time I had to make a tough choice was when I was working at a fast food restaurant, and we received a large order for a party. One of my coworkers was feeling unwell and was struggling to keep up with the demand. I had to decide whether to try to help her finish the order on time or to ask her to step back and rest so that she could recover.
After considering the options and the potential consequences, I decided to ask her to step back and rest. I explained the situation to the customer and offered to prepare the order myself, even though it meant that it would take longer than expected. The customer understood and agreed to the revised timeline, and my coworker recovered and returned to work the next day. This decision helped maintain my coworker’s health and well-being and prevent any negative impact on the business.’
17. Describe a time when you had to work under tight deadlines.
Interviewers ask this question to gauge your ability to handle pressure and meet deadlines in a fast-paced work environment. Working under tight deadlines is common in many jobs, and handling this pressure while still delivering high-quality work is an important skill to have.
Example: ‘I had to work under tight deadlines at my previous fast-food job when we were short-staffed and had a high volume of customers during the lunch rush. I had to work quickly and efficiently to ensure that all of the orders were prepared accurately and delivered to the customers in a timely manner. I was able to stay calm and focused under pressure, and I was able to complete all of the orders on time despite the tight deadline. This experience taught me the importance of time management and being able to work well under pressure.’
18. Tell me about a time when you had to work with someone difficult to get along with.
Interviewers may ask you this question to get an idea of how you handle conflict and difficult personalities. They want to learn more about if you are able to find ways to work effectively with people who may not be easy to get along with. Ensure that your answer includes skills that help you effectively communicate and find common ground with others, even when there is a disagreement or difference of opinion.
Example: ‘I had to work with someone who was difficult to get along with at my previous fast food job. He was often negative and uncooperative, making completing tasks and projects challenging. Despite this, I made an effort to communicate openly and honestly with him and tried to find common ground. I also made sure to stay respectful and professional at all times. In the end, we were able to find ways to work together effectively and complete our tasks to the best of our ability. This experience taught me the importance of working with a diverse group of people and finding ways to effectively communicate and collaborate with others, even when it is challenging at times.’
19. Describe a time when you had to handle a situation outside your comfort zone.
Interviewers ask this question to assess how you handle a situation outside of your comfort zone to get a sense of how you handle challenges and unfamiliar situations. Demonstrate to them that you are able to adapt to new situations and take on new responsibilities – even when they are outside of your comfort zone.
Example: ‘One time, I had to cover for a coworker who called out sick on a busy Saturday night. I usually work as a server, but I had to step in as the bartender for the evening. I had never made drinks before, and I was really nervous about getting orders wrong or making mistakes. But I knew that the restaurant was counting on me, and I didn’t want to let my team down. So, I asked for help from the other bartenders and servers, and I tried my best to learn as I went. It was definitely outside my comfort zone, but I was able to pull it off, and the night went smoothly. I was really proud of myself for stepping up and handling the challenge, and it was a great opportunity for me to learn a new skill.’
20. Tell me about a time you had to handle a situation requiring your problem-solving skills.
Interviewers ask this question to assess how you approach challenges and how you think on your feet. Make sure that you provide an answer that demonstrates that you have the ability to identify problems and come up with creative solutions when needed.
Example: ‘One time, I was working a shift as a server and noticed that one of the kitchen staff had accidentally used the wrong sauce on a customer’s dish. The customer had an allergy to that particular sauce and specified this while ordering their food. We were worried about the potential health risks, so I quickly informed the manager, and we decided to remake the dish with the correct sauce and apologize to the customer. While this added some extra time and work for the kitchen staff, the customer was understanding and grateful that we took their allergy seriously. It was a situation that required quick thinking and problem-solving skills to ensure the safety and satisfaction of the customer.’
Conclusion Chipotle Interview Questions
Your goal during an interview where you get asked Chipotle interview questions is to demonstrate your fit for the position and the company values and culture.
During a Chipotle job interview, it is important to focus on your customer service skills and your ability to work as part of a team. Chipotle places a strong emphasis on providing excellent customer service and creating a positive and inclusive work environment, so it is important to demonstrate your commitment to these values. You should also be prepared to talk about your availability and willingness to work a flexible schedule, as well as any relevant experience you have in the food industry or in a fast-paced work environment.
In addition, you should be prepared to talk about your personal strengths and how they align with the values and culture of Chipotle. For example, you could discuss your reliability, attention to detail, and teamwork skills. You should also be prepared to ask questions about the company and the role to show your interest in the opportunity. Overall, the key is to be friendly, professional, and enthusiastic about the opportunity to join the Chipotle team!