We've all been in an unproductive interview where the standard "What's your biggest weakness?" and "How do you deal with conflict?" are asked. The interviewee recites a canned response and both of you walk away not learning much more about each other than you knew before the interview. Make interviews a more revealing process by tossing out those standard questions and using these six questions that can help you hire better employees.
Tell Me About Your Current/Last Boss
Some employees aren't trying to switch businesses because they want an opportunity elsewhere or adore your company. Some are just employees who are consistently finding greener grass due to bad relationships. This open-ended question can help provide insight into whether you have a candidate who is the former or the latter. If this question leads to employer-bashing and gossip-mongering, it's better to pass on the candidate.
Why Shouldn't We Hire You?
This twist on the classic "Why should we hire you?" helps employers assess both honesty and get insight into the candidate by asking a curve ball question during a process that usually encourages candidates to put their best foot forward. Employers should look at both body language and response to find authentic candidates who can provide insight into both their good qualities and those that are lacking.
Pitch This Company As If You Were Trying to Convince Me to Become a Customer
Whether your industry is sales or service, you want employees who can muster enthusiasm and excitement for your business. This question can help uncover those employees who have a passion for what you do and what you offer. A great employee and excellent job candidate will have researched your business and be eager to join your team. This question can help find those candidates.
What Project Do You Consider Most Meaningful to Your Career?
Great employees look for opportunities to enhance and improve their workplace by pursuing projects that help the entire company. This question generates excitement in those employees and leaves the employees just looking for a consistent paycheck flummoxed. Consider not only the size of the project, but how it impacted their team, company, or workflow. Not only does this sort out those motivated candidates, but the question also helps identify what the candidate values from their career.
Describe a Situation Where You've Been Asked to Do Something You Didn't Agree With And What You Did
We've all been in a work situation where we've been asked to do something that bothered us. Whether it was a co-worker who wanted you to clock them in early or a boss who told you to tell a white lie to a customer, those challenges can reveal deeper insight into you as a person and an employee. Ask this open-ended question to assess your candidate for morality and problem-solving.
Describe One of the Biggest Mistakes You've Made in Your Career
Everyone makes mistakes. For some people, this destroys their motivation and they shield that mistake. Others can learn and grow from it. This question allows you to assess which camp your candidate falls into. Pay attention to who is "blamed" in the situation. If the candidate takes responsibility, it means they can reflect and grow from criticism. If the candidate blames the circumstances or other people in the situation, you may not have a good fit for the position.
Interviews can be a great way to screen for great employees but you have to ask the right questions. Use these questions on your next interview to delve a little deeper and find the best fit for your business.