INTERVIEWS / JUL. 09, 2013
version 2, draft 2

4 Interview Questions That Reveal a Lot about a Candidate

The interview process is usually a stressful one. Though candidate after candidate walks through the door, there’s usually something that triggers your suspicion or concern – mostly because there are always those candidates who have mastered the art of interviewing well.

To ascertain exactly what sort of a candidate you are dealing with, you should ask a specific set of questions in a structured format.

Work your way through the candidates CV/resume, starting with their earliest job vacancy listed and working your way up. The questions that you should ask include:

1.      1.  How did you find out about the job?

As you work your way through each job you should hope for a different answer each time. If the candidate provides the same answer each time (e.g. by searching through general postings) this is saying to you that they haven’t quite figured out what direction they want their career to go in.

2.      2, What did you like about the job before you started?

Try to establish what appealed to them about the job before they even started. What triggered their interest to send an application? Was it the appeal of a fancy job title? Or much more than that?

3.       3. Why did you leave?

Though some candidates leave their jobs for better opportunities, others leave for more serious reasons, such as an argument with the boss, or bad relations with a co-worker.

Leave them plenty of time to answer. Though the temptation is there to delve further by asking lots of questions, allow the candidate to naturally elaborate their answers.

Finally...

4.      4,  How many people have you hired? How did you find them?

As you work your way through each job, the candidate should become more and more detailed with each answer. Take note of their responses and avoid deviating from the three-question plan, for a more constructive yet effective interview process. 

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