When you host a job interview, the goal is obviously to assess the readiness of a candidate to join your organization. Some may be far more appealing to you, as a hiring manager, than others, but you need to do whatever you can to make sure everyone you talk to can put their best foot forward to highlight their potential value.
How do you do that? There are plenty of methods that may allow you to host a successful job interview, including the following:
1) Ease into the conversation
In many cases, a job candidate will be at least a little nervous about their interview and you can help put them in a better frame of mind by having some light chit-chat before you get down to brass tacks, according to marketing expert Shel Israel, writing for Forbes. Talk about the weather, the local sports team or some other innocuous topic to get the conversation going without digging in right away.
2) Use open-ended questions
One of the most important things in a job interview is to make sure it's a conversation, rather than a question-and-answer session, Israel noted. For that reason, it helps to make your questions open-ended so you can ask, they can respond, and you can pivot off that response in a more natural way — rather than feeling like you're just going down a checklist.
3) Look for the fit
A good reason to have a more free-flowing conversation is that you're trying to assess whether this person can think on their feet and has the kind of personality that will mesh well with your current team, according to Business Town. It's one thing to find a candidate with all the right qualifications and skills, but finding one you are also confident will ease seamlessly into your organization is priceless.
4) Let them talk
In much the same way it's important to have a conversation, it's also a good idea not to dominate it too much, Business Town advised. Some experts recommend that you, as hiring manger, talk just 20% of the time. While that might seem a little low in some cases, it's important to at least give candidates the chance to talk for more than half the time, regardless of any other circumstances.
5) Think about an assessment test
If you're looking for something to take your interview a little outside the box, you might want to start by having the candidate fill out an aptitude test, according to Inc., magazine. That way, you can discuss their answers and figure out what lines up well with your mission. Just make sure they're aware in advance that they will be tested.
6) Don't do a stress interview
One outside-the-box interview technique that is best left by the wayside is a "stress interview" where you ask hard questions, often in a hostile tone, Inc., said. Simply put, candidates aren't likely to respond well to that and all you're doing is creating a potentially toxic work environment for someone before you even hire them.
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