How you ask questions and even when you ask them during an interview impacts the quality and value of answers you receive from candidates. To gain insight and elicit specific information about the applicant’s past performance and personality, consider implementing these Do’s into your interview process.
- DO Make Lists – Write down all the questions you want to ask candidates ahead of time. This will help make sure that you don’t get wrapped up in a conversation with them and forget to ask important questions that relate to their work history. Consider sharing the list with other key employees within your organization and see if they have any specific questions to add.
- DO Create a Flow – To be a good interviewer, you will need to incorporate a variety of question styles so the candidate doesn’t feel overwhelmed and interrogated. Here is a brief run down on the main types of interview questions:
- Open-ended – These types of questions require that the applicant give more thought to their answers. These are great questions to gaining more insight into a candidate’s work ethic, motivations and personality. An example of this type of question is, “Why do you want to work for our company?”
- Closed-ended – These are straightforward, simple questions that can be answered with a simple “yes” or “no.” For example, “How many years of accounting experience do you have?”
- Hypothetical – These questions allow interviewers to gain insight into how candidates respond to certain situations. For example, “If you were managing an employee that was difficult with poor work performance, how would you address this situation?”
- Off-the-wall – More unusual questions can throw candidates off-guard, giving interviewers more insight into their personality and communication styles. For example, “If you were a brand, what would be your motto?”
- DO Vary Question Order – Avoid asking too many open-ended or close-ended questions in a row. Alternate easy questions with tough questions, which will help put the candidate more at ease.
- DO Ask for Examples – While hypothetical questions are excellent, it’s better to ask employees for specific examples of things they encountered in their past work history. For example, ask them about a time they had a conflict at work and what they did to resolve that conflict.
- DO Keep Things Concise – Avoid letting subjects veer too far off track and help keep the interview on track by keeping the conversation on target.
This is a two-part article. Next week we will feature the don’ts for successful interviews. Ninja Gig specializes in developing customized online job applications, which helps employers easily accept and track employment applications. Sign up today for a 30-day free trial!