Thursday, May 16, 2024

What Are Good Interview Questions To Ask A Candidate

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How Many People Were On Your Team At Your Last Job

5 interview questions to ask candidates

This is a good interview question for screening people with management positions on their resumes. The number of people on their team should match what you would expect for the position.

Reg flag: If they were in a management position and didn’t oversee the number of people you’d expect, this could be a red flag and could indicate an inflated title. For example, a Vice President of Sales who didn’t oversee any salespeople could be a bad sign.

Make Natural Transitions Between Questions

Having a list of interview questions to ask is good practice, but it has an inherent difficulty: it might make the interview seem more robotic and inflexible.

For example, imagine youre listening to a candidates answer. When they finish talking, you may suddenly feel awkward, so you nod and say something akin to OK, interesting and then you move on to the next question. This isnt how a natural conversation would flow, and it might make the experience less pleasant for the candidate .

What Is Your Favorite Part Of Being A Manager

Including this as one of your manager interview questions helps reveal the candidates knowledge of the position. Do their answers use common business and managerial terminology? Are they familiar with the nuances of managing a team?

Do their answers touch on why they want to work as in your business? Candidates responses can help you gain a better understanding of the person underneath the veneer they show at the interview.

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What Would You Say Is Your Biggest Weakness

The aim of this question is to see if a job candidate ACTUALLY gives a real weakness, not a strength disguised as a weakness. The key is to see if the candidate comes up with a genuine, unique weakness and not a generic one.

Confident: My biggest weakness is that I always say yes to people. I know, it might seem good on paperbut I find myself constantly saying yes to things I dont want to! For example, Ive recently said yes to helping my cousin move and going to a party I didnt want to attend. But Im working on it by having a tip jar and tipping myself a dollar every time I say no to something I dread.

Honest: To be honest, my biggest weakness might be that I havent had a full-time job in the past few years. Ive been busy taking care of my family during this time. However, Ive still been keeping up in the industry by self-learning and taking freelance gigs on the side, when I have the time.

Self-Defeating: Well, Im pretty bad at everything. Organizing, being on time, working hard

Generic: Sometimes I can be quiet, especially when Im around others I dont know. But I tend to open up once I get to know them better!

Avoidant: My biggest weakness is puppiesGOSH I love those furry things!

Whats Your Working Style

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This question is used as a follow-up to asking the candidate to describe themselves. In a way, it implies that the answer to the first question did not involve enough information about the candidates work ethic.

Have no fear. This does not mean that things are already off to a rough start. Depending on the job, the hiring manager may need more information about exactly how a candidate works. While describing yourself is a bit more broad and open for interpretation, describing your working style is more direct.

How do you work? Are you a leader and take initiative? Are you great at following orders and being part of a team? As long as youre confident and saying positive things about yourself, theres a lot of wiggle room for your answer.

As stated, think of the job at hand. What type of worker would they be looking for?

Example Answer: My working style really depends on the job at hand. I can take the initiative and be a leader, or I can be a team player and help where needed. Overall, I work hard and want to do any job well. I am flexible and can fill any role on a team.

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How Would You Deal With Working Under Someone Who Is Younger Or Less Experienced Than You

It may be difficult for some candidates to work under a manager who is younger or less experienced than them. In today’s corporate environment, this is a very real possibility and candidates should be able to respect and work hard for their managers no matter who they are.

Red flags: The candidate doesn’t know.

What Have You Done Professionally That Is Not An Experience Youd Want To Repeat

The important part of the answer to this question is why they dont want to repeat the experience. Was it because it was difficult? Was it because they didnt enjoy what they were doing? Pay attention to whether they have learned anything of value from their experience. Have they applied that experience to further their self-improvement?

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What Has Surprised You About This Interview Process So Far

This is a question no candidate can really prepare for, and it’ll give you some indication of how candidates are feeling about the whole thing. Plus, you can see how they think on their feet.

A good answer to this question:

You’re looking for specifics here — something about the office space the personality of the team an assignment they were given to complete.

Honest answers are good answers, and answers that are directed at you are even better, as they show the candidate is confident speaking their mind in front of decision-makers. For instance, maybe the candidate was surprised you asked them about something on their resume that they don’t personally pay much attention to.

How To Structure Your Interviews

Interview Questions to Ask an IT Candidate

Structured interviews are effective methods of predicting job performance. Their three main characteristics are:

  • You ask all candidates the same questions.
  • You ask questions in the same order.
  • You evaluate answers based on standardized rating scales.

The first two characteristics are easy, yet critical for success. If you ask different questions of each candidate, its impossible to objectively compare their answers. This will result in you trying to make a hiring decision on your gut feeling which potentially leads to harmful biases and discrimination.

So, when you decide which interview questions to ask, spend some time putting them in order. To do this, use the format of an interview scorecard its possible your applicant tracking system has a function to help you build scorecards and share them with your team.

The third characteristic of a structured interview the rating scales is immensely helpful in ensuring youll hire objectively. You create a scale and then you evaluate candidates answers with that scale. To do this right, define what exactly each item on the scale means.

Alternatively, you could use a simpler scale, such as Yes, No and Definitely

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What Would Be Your Ideal Work Environment

This question reveals honesty and whether the candidate would be a good fit for your company. If the candidate describes a work environment that is completely different from your office environment, ask them how they plan to adjust to a different type of work environment.

Red flags: The candidate provides a generic answer or describes a type of work environment that is completely different from your own.

There Are Some Things You Can Do To Make The Transition Easier:

  • Group the questions according to topic. For example, if you want to ask about writing skills, list all these questions together. Then, if a candidate answering one question touches on another question in your list, you can easily say Actually, I was planning to ask you about that. Tell me more about. This applies to similar skills as well for example, list organizational interview questions and leadership interview questions one after the other.
  • Ask prompting questions. Candidates will use their experiences, knowledge and thoughts to back up their answers. Most of the time, youll have something to ask about those thats relevant to the role. For instance, you can say something like You mentioned that you did this project with a team of designers. We actually have a great team here that youll be working closely with should you be hired. How would you feel about this?
  • React like you would in a social situation. If somebody told you at a party that theyre currently working on a cutting-edge face recognition program, how would you react? You might say something like That sounds fascinating. Tell me more or Whats the program like? Its OK to respond this way during an interview, as long as you make sure the conversation doesnt stray from the job youre hiring for.

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Most Common Interview Questions

  • Why do you want to work for this company?
  • What are your greatest strengths?
  • What is your biggest weakness?
  • Tell me about a challenge or conflict you overcame at work.
  • What is your most impressive work achievement?
  • Why do you want to work at this company?
  • Why do you want to leave your current role or company?
  • Where do you see yourself in five years?
  • What are your salary expectations?
  • How Do You Set Goals Outline The Process

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    Most of your best employees will be highly goal-oriented and results driven, hardly surprising then that hiring managers want more of the same!

    This interview question is great at ensuring that candidates are going to match up to the goals that you set them, and should show you whether they have sufficient initiative to set their own targets.

    The best candidates will articulate their exact goal setting process. This should involve: how they select goals, how they split these lofty goals up into smaller tasks, how they plan to tackle these tasks, and ultimately how they measure success.

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    How Did You Hear About The Role

    While seemingly innocuous, this question serves an important purpose. Your company is probably spending significant budget every year on employer branding, advertising and candidate attraction. It’s important to understand what is working!

    You need to know whether the messaging your company is investing in is resonating with the right candidates. Make a note of the answers to see whether specific trends emerge. For example, maybe high quality candidates all come across your brand on Twitter, therefore you should invest more in that medium.

    It’s true that you can rely on analytics, providing you have them in place, to tell you where traffic is coming from and that many applications have a ‘how did you hear about us’ section, but sometimes, hearing it directly from the horse’s mouth give you more context.

    Examples Of Situational Questions:

    • You realise your manager has made a big mistake on an important project. What would you do?
    • What would you do if you thought your workload was too heavy?
    • What would you do if a team member wasnt pulling their weight on a group project?

    The best responses to situational questions provide tangible explanations that highlight specific steps that candidates could take to resolve an issue. Theres no right or wrong answer, says Maligaspe. Youre looking for how the candidate backs up their ideas and reasons.

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    What Personality Types Do You Work Well With Why

    This question is not designed for office matching. Rather, it provides insight into the candidate’s awareness of personality traits. If a candidate knows their own personality and the type of people they like to work with, they can contribute to a stable work environment.

    Red flag: The candidate does not know.

    What About This Position Attracted You To Apply

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    The more a candidate tells you the better. Do the like the industry or perhaps technologies or equipment your company uses.

    If they say well its close to my house and thats the main reason then you may want to keep talking to other candidates. You are going to be investing in this person and you want them to be excited about the opportunity.

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    What’s One Of The Most Interesting Projects Or Opportunities That You’ve Worked On

    “I like this question because it gets me thinking about my own experiences, and my response changes depending on what I was or am working on and in theory, should always be changing if I’m challenging myself and advancing,” Brown told Business Insider.

    Brown says that by asking for a specific example, candidates can get a better picture of what the job entails and how people function in certain roles.

    What Excites You Most About This Position

    Skills can be taught, but theres one thing that cant be: enthusiasm. When an interviewee is truly excited about an opportunity, that typically translates into excellent work and greater longevity with your company.

    Ask that potential employee about what initially attracted him to the position. What makes him most excited about the prospect of working there?

    Doing so will not only once again confirm his grasp of the duties of the role, but also give you a chance to figure out what aspects of the job interest him most.

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    Tell Me What You Liked Best And Least About Working At Abc

    This helps you find what their passionate about, proudest of, what challenges them, and what theyll complain about. Loved caring for people is a great fit for that home health worker. Hated dealing with the public not a good fit for your retail spot.

    Even if theyre not working in their field of choice, every candidate should be able to tell you something they do that makes them proud.

    What their answers mean:

    • Liked new challenges: open for growth
    • It was so easy: may be an underachiever
    • Loved the paycheck: red flag

    Worst things

    • Like the job/people/company, but its not my passion: not a bad worst thing. Many candidates have jobs for which theyre overqualified in a challenging economy. The fact that they havent given up on their goals is commendable.
    • No opportunity to grow: good sign if youre looking for someone who will develop on the job. However, if youre tired of the revolving door that filling this particular spot has become, this candidate might not be a good fit.
    • Frustration with the company: ask for details. If theyre unable to provide the service or work they hope due to management/budget constraints, the candidate may be someone who takes pride in their work. If theres no good reason for their frustration, they might be difficult to please.

    Who Is The Smartest Person You Know Why

    The questions to ask in an informational interview

    This is a great way to see what a candidate values and aspires to. By forcing them to think of someone that they know personally, you avoid a stream of people praising Steve Jobs and telling you how much they aspire to be like him.

    Instead, you’ll see answers that praise specific traits that a candidate’s friends, family or former colleagues have exhibited.

    There are no perfect answers here, but the best should focus on a specific characteristic, candidate’s might praise a friend’s desire for learning or networking ability.

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    B Illegal Interview Questions

    This goes without saying. Using one of these illegal interview questions to ask the interviewee can damage your employer brand at best and, at worst, you might actually run afoul of the law or even get sued.

    The problem with illegal questions is that they often crop up in an interview without the interviewer being aware that theyre illegal. But, often, these questions are also personal and not job-related, so its easy to learn to steer clear of them. Here are some examples of illegal questions:

    • How old are you?
    • Are you a native English speaker?
    • Do you plan to have children?
    • Are you married or plan to get married soon?
    • Have you ever been arrested?
    • Have you ever used any drugs?
    • When did you graduate?

    These interview questions have the potential of illegally disadvantaging a protected group. For example, in the United States, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission warns against making decisions based on arrest records because this may cause you to unwittingly discriminate against protected groups. Similarly, in the UK, age is one of the protected characteristics of the Equality Act 2010. This means that a direct question about age, or even an indirect one might get you in trouble.

    Questions To Determine A Good Leader

    If youre hiring for a management position, determine if the candidate has the appropriate leadership qualities essential for the job. However, even if its not a management position, you may still want to look for such leadership qualities in a candidate. It means that they may have the potential to progress to a leadership position within your company in the future. These questions can help you ascertain whether they have leadership skills or, at the very least, leadership potential:

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    Unique Interview Questions To Shake Up Your Hiring

    Are you asking unique interview questions?

    Or, just the same old, everyday, run-of-the-mill ones?

    Unique interview questions are designed to probe beneath the surface to get you the valuable knowledge you require to make the best hiring decisions.

    In this article, youll learn what the most common interview questions are, why you should ask unique questions, the uncommon questions you should be asking candidates, and so much more!

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