Top 20 Chipotle Interview Questions (Example Answers Included)

By Mike Simpson

Chipotle is looking to pounce, at least, that’s the case when it comes to hiring. The restaurant chain is looking to bring 10,000 new employees on board, allowing them to up their staffing levels to support rebounding sales. If you want to be one of the lucky 10,000 to join the chain’s ranks, all that stands between you and glory are the Chipotle interview questions.

Is the path toward working at Chipotle hard? Are the job interview questions the hiring manager has at the ready going to throw you off? Well, in both cases, the answer is a resounding, “That depends.”

As with all interviews, you can’t nail the Chipotle interview questions without doing a little preparation. Luckily, we have your back. If you want to stand out among the other candidates looking to capitalize on this hiring round, here’s what you need to know.

How to Answer Chipotle Interview Questions

Before we take a deep dive into the Chipotle interview questions and example answers, let’s pause for a moment to ask some important questions of our own. First, what exactly does it take to create an excellent answer to any interview question? And second, is there a formula that can increase your odds of getting an offer?

Creating a standout interview answer usually doesn’t happen by accident. While you might think that you can head into the meeting, wing the entire thing, and still end up working at Chipotle at the end, that isn’t a smart assumption. Outstanding answers need to be crafted and honed.

Otherwise, your odds of stumbling through your response, misspeaking, or committing a faux pas go up dramatically.

Thankfully, there is a formula that can help you on your journey toward epic interview responses. What is that formula? Well, it’s research + strategy + practice = interview success.

So, let’s talk about the first part: research. As the adage goes, knowledge is power. Before you even start practicing answers to the Chipotle interview questions, spend a little time learning about the job. Review that Chipotle job description like you’ll be tested on the content because, in a way, you will be. By doing so, you’ll know which skills and traits you need to showcase to come across as a top candidate.

However, you don’t want to stop there. Also, take a quick trip over to the Chipotle website. Learn about the company’s mission and values. Unlike that queso debacle, this really is a secret sauce for making a positive impression. If you can reference details from these statements during your meeting, you’re positioning yourself as a knowledgeable contender.

Generally speaking, Chipotle is going to favor job seekers who are outgoing, friendly, and calm under pressure. Cash handling skills will be critical for restaurant employees, as well as punctuality, accountability, and reliability. However, what else you need to bring to the table varies depending on the specific role, which is why doing your research is such a vital step.

Okay, let’s move on to the second part of the equation: strategy. With straightforward interview questions, it’s pretty easy to nail the approach. For example, if you’re asked if you have a particular skill, you say “yes” or “no.” Then, if you do have it, provide an example of how you put it to work or how you honed it. If you don’t, pivot by discussing how you’d acquire it or your overall interest in learning. Done.

But what about the Chipotle behavioral interview questions? Aren’t those trickier to handle?

In many cases, they are a bit more challenging. But that doesn’t mean you should panic. By taking the STAR Method and mixing in a solid dose of the Tailoring Method, you get a recipe for success. Your responses will be relevant and engaging. Double done.

Finally, part three of the formula: practice. With practice, you can really get your answers down. That way, when the hiring manager asks you something you expected, you can offer an effortless reply. No more stumbling for the right words. You’ll already know exactly what to say.

JEFF'S TIP: Even if the hiring manager asks you a question you didn’t anticipate, practice still helps. You’ll get comfortable with talking about your capabilities and are more likely to have a great example of how you put your skills to work at the ready. That all plays in your favor, including when a question catches you a bit off-guard.

Top 3 Chipotle Interview Questions

Now that you know the formula for interview success, it’s time to review those Chipotle interview questions and example answers you’ve been waiting for. While your responses should be unique and personal, based on your skills and traits, seeing how you could handle a question can give you direction; that’s what makes examples so incredibly valuable.

Here’s a look at the top three Chipotle interview questions that you may encounter, as well as an example response.

1. How well do you perform in a team environment?

As with many food service companies, teamwork makes the dream work at Chipotle. The hiring manager needs to know that you work well with others, particularly during rushes.

If working at Chipotle is your goal, make sure to provide a clear example of a time you thrived as part of a team. That way, you’re showing the hiring manager you have what it takes, instead of just telling them.

EXAMPLE ANSWER:

“I believe that I perform incredibly well in a team environment. In my last position, which was in food service, working together was critical for success. By coordinating our efforts, we could keep customer lines moving forward seamlessly and ensure our drive-thru times remained as low as possible. Additionally, by being vigilant of our colleagues, we could step in and offer help if someone was struggling, allowing the entire group to more easily stay on target.”

2. Why do you want to work for Chipotle?

While this question, aside from the specific reference to Chipotle, isn’t unique to this restaurant chain, it can be incredibly important. With the right answer, you can stand out from the competition.

For example, if you can reference some of Chipotle’s core values here, you increase your odds of making an exceptional impression. It’s a great way to work those details in, showing that you aren’t just looking for any old job, but that working at Chipotle is specifically your goal.

EXAMPLE ANSWER:

“I want to work for Chipotle because the company is dedicated to doing the right thing. Chipotle focuses on real ingredients, authenticity, and exceptional customer service, all of which are important. I want to be a part of a company that values its approach over the bottom line and, I believe Chipotle is a place where I can do just that.”

3. What do you think are your best traits? How will they help you excel at Chipotle?

This two-part question does several things. First, it allows the hiring manager to learn about the areas where you think you shine. Second, it gives them clues as to how you’d use those traits to thrive in the job.

When you answer, make sure to be genuine. This isn’t about telling the hiring manager what they want to hear. Technically, any positive trait could be fair game – as long as you can show how it will help you succeed – so there’s no reason to be dishonest.

EXAMPLE ANSWER:

“I believe that my positive attitude, dedication, and adaptability are my best traits, and each can help me excel at Chipotle. Having a positive attitude doesn’t just enhance the customer experience, but it also helps with teamwork. My dedication means I’m accountable, and always aim to exceed expectations. As for adaptability, I find it lets me thrive in a fast-paced environment where priorities can change quickly, something that I think will serve me well as a Chipotle employee.”

17 More Chipotle Interview Questions

Here are 17 more Chipotle interview questions you may face off against:

      1. What do you know about Chipotle as a company?
      2. Are you familiar with Chipotle’s mission and values?
      3. Do you regularly eat at Chipotle? Why or why not?
      4. Can you tell me about your availability?
      5. If a customer became angry because an item they wanted to order wasn’t available, how would you handle it?
      6. How would you define great customer service?
      7. If your shift was coming to an end, but your replacement hadn’t yet arrived, what would you do?
      8. Give me an example of a situation where you demonstrated exceptional customer service.
      9. Do you have reliable transportation?
      10. How long do you plan on working at Chipotle?
      11. Can you tell me about your cash handling or cashiering experience?
      12. Are you familiar with point-of-sale systems?
      13. If a customer wasn’t fully satisfied with their meal, what would you do?
      14. Describe a time when you had to teach someone something. How did it turn out?
      15. Tell me about a time when you had to multitask.
      16. If a customer requests double meat without paying for it, how would you handle the situation?
      17. Do you think you’re well-equipped to handle the daily rushes?

5 Good Questions to Ask at the End of a Chipotle Interview

As your Chipotle interview begins to come to a close, it’s normal to get an opportunity to ask the hiring manager a few questions. You need to make sure that you have a few ready. With a smart question, you showcase your interest in the position and come across as engaged. That works in your favor.

If you aren’t sure what you should ask, here are five good questions to ask at the end of a Chipotle interview:

      1. What does a typical day in this position look like? What about the most challenging day?
      2. Do your best employees have skills and traits in common? If so, what are they, and how do they help them excel in the role?
      3. Are there opportunities for growth and advancement?
      4. What kind of training do new hires receive?
      5. Did anything surprise you about working for Chipotle when you initially started?

Putting It All Together

Ultimately, by using the tips above, you’ll have a formula that can help you showcase yourself as the exceptional candidate you know yourself to be. You’ll be able to nail your Chipotle interview questions, increasing the odds that you’ll get a job offer. After all, working at Chipotle can be a great way to launch a customer service or food service career, so it’s smart to give it your all.

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About The Author

Mike Simpson

Co-Founder and CEO of TheInterviewGuys.com. Mike is a job interview and career expert and the head writer at TheInterviewGuys.com. His advice and insights have been shared and featured by publications such as Forbes, Entrepreneur, CNBC and more as well as educational institutions such as the University of Michigan, Penn State, Northeastern and others. Learn more about The Interview Guys on our About Us page.