Interviews are intended to be the opportunity for hiring managers to gain valuable insight into candidates and how well they would fit in the roles in question. However, if the interview is not structured strategically, you can leave not knowing much more about candidates other than who is better at saying the “right” things. Dig deeper and get the most out of a job interview with these tips:
Know What You Are Looking For
How will you know if your interview is effective unless you have defined what you are looking for in a candidate? Clarify what specific qualifications you will use as criteria to measure candidates. Be as specific as possible, including work history, technical skills, soft skills, and personality traits.
Look for Indications of Company Research
A common factor that separates the truly enthusiastic, prepared candidates from the smooth talkers is how much they research the company before the interview. Be on the lookout for indicators of company research, such as tailoring their responses to fit your company or their familiarity during small talk.
Focus on Behavioral Questions
Gain valuable insight into candidates’ workstyles by asking questions about what they would be likely to do, not what they think about particular topics. Focus on behavioral questions and ask how they precisely would handle common scenarios in a step-by-step manner. You will learn how proactive they are, how they problem solve and more.
Prompt for Specific Examples
Structure the interview in order to make it difficult for candidates to answer without sincerity. Encourage candidates to respond as authentically as possible by prompting them for specific examples for any claims they make. For example, rather than asking a candidate about their weaknesses, you could ask them to give you an example of a time they made a mistake and how they handled it.
A candidate with the seemingly ideal set of qualifications or who gives the exact answers you are looking for does not necessarily mean they will be the best fit. Use the job interview to evaluate the potential of each candidate. Observe their level of enthusiasm and passion, as well as their responses about factors that contribute to being top performers: ability to accept constructive criticism; adaptability to change; and strong internal work ethic.
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