Finding the right team members for your company requires a lot of patience. It can take a while for the seemingly perfect candidate to come in and interview for a position within your company.
That said, if you use the right techniques during your interview process, you’ll not only have more chances of finding the right candidate but also learning a lot more about each candidate — enabling you to better inform your final decisions.
In this article, I’m going to go through some interview techniques that you can use to make sure you’re getting the most out of each interview to help you better select new team members.
For some reason, many of the business owners I know don’t actually prepare properly for each interview. They then explain to me that they’re having a tough time hiring.
If we read between the lines, we can clearly see what the problem is. Failure to prepare for interviews is not only going to make you miss important information about your interviewees, but it will also make you look unprofessional. Trust me, the interviewee will sense your unpreparedness straight away, which can be an instant turn-off for some candidates.
So, what should you do to prepare?
First, explore the resume of each candidate coming in for an interview. Look for stand-out points and highlight them. Look for anything that may be a slight concern to your company.
Based on your findings from each candidate’s resume, start building a list of key questions you want to ask each candidate. Sure, you can create a set of preset questions that you’d like to ask all candidates, but make sure to have at least 3 unique questions for each candidate to help you build a better picture of who they really are.
Next, you want to organize your schedule and give each candidate plenty of notice for the interview. It can seem unprofessional and unfair on the interviewee if you only give them very short notice. So, make sure you give plenty of notice and also offer flexibility with interview time slots.
Another good idea would be to prepare where your interview will take place. Will it be in person at your company’s office or online (via Zoom/Skype/Microsoft Teams, etc)? No matter the venue, it’s always good to prepare the setting, as it’s important to take into account your candidate’s first impression when meeting you or visiting your company’s offices.
What Questions Should You Ask?
As explained above, it’s important to ask a range of questions, including specific questions based on each candidate’s resume.
The goal is to build a clear picture of who each candidate really is and what they can offer to your company.
Here is a list of questions you can use to inspire your interview questions:
- What motivated you to work in this industry?
- What’s the most challenging obstacle you’ve faced while working in the industry?
- What are 3 skills or qualities that you’d bring to our company?
- How would you describe yourself in 5 words?
- Why have you decided to move away from your previous employer? What can we offer that your previous employer doesn’t?
- In your opinion, what are the most important things a company should do for their team members?
While it’s important to ask a wide range of questions, it’s always best to mostly ask open questions — so interviewees can give more expansive answers that will give you more information about them and their views. Here are some other great interview question suggestions.
Empathize with Candidates
It’s important to empathize with interviewees prior to, and during, each interview.
Many candidates will be nervous. In some cases, they might be extremely nervous. Nerves in small doses are normal and even good for us in many situations. But you need to spot when a candidate looks particularly nervous or worried.
Knowing this can help you take steps to make them feel more comfortable in the interview. It can also help you to realize that the candidate’s nervousness is not a true representation of themselves — and also not a representation of what they’ll be like if they worked for your company.
If you notice that a candidate is nervous, give them more time and make a real effort to calm their nerves. This way, you’ll get the most out of the interviewee and help you build a better idea of how they will fit into your company.
Be Ready to Receive Questions from Candidates
It’s important to be prepared for candidates who have a list of questions about you and your company.
The kind of questions your candidates may ask include:
- Do you offer employee benefits? If so, what are they?
- Where do you plan to take the company in the next 5 years?
- What does your ideal employee look/act/think like?
- Are there many opportunities for me to progress within this company?
You need to be prepared for questions like this, as your responses can be the difference between a good candidate accepting an offer or refusing an offer.
Finding the Best Candidates
Finding the right candidates that will offer the most for your company is tricky, but it’s definitely worth looking introspectively at how you’re conducting your hiring process.
Sometimes, patience is due in abundance (to put it lightly). But by preparing properly, you can get the most out of each interview and find out which candidates will be the best fit for your company.
For more information on growing your business, entrepreneurship, or improving your marketing strategy, read through some of the latest posts on the Intentionally Inspirational blog.
Written by Lewis James