Interviewing Basics

After this course, you will have a better understanding of interviewing basics.

Knowledge Check

1. It is okay to ask a candidate what church they go to.

  • True
  • False

2. For all interviews conducted, I am required to take notes using the Attributes for Success Interview Form.

  • True
  • False

3. Second round interviews are required for all positions.

  • True
  • False

Interviewing Basics

Outputs from a Successful Interview

The General Managers of the operating businesses collectively developed this guide. This guide is to be used across all company brands when hiring field employees. Hiring managers should utilize this guide and the corresponding Attributes for Success Interview Form each time they conduct an interview for an open position. Following this guide and using the form will assist us in making successful hires that incorporate the company’s key values, culture and Attributes for Success. 

Outputs from a Successful Interview

Our number one objective is to make a hiring decision for those candidates that best meet our job description in terms of what they can do and how they can do it. This requires clarifying the candidate’s skills and experience as stated on their application or resume. Your job is to sort through this information to determine the validity of past experiences. Your best indication of future performance is understanding the candidates past employment and performance history. Get a general sense of the candidate’s overall attributes as they relate to the requirements of the job. You should be interviewing for ‘how’ the candidate will perform along with the specific skills they are bringing to the job. Each job is different and therefore the specific skills and attributes may be different from job to job. You need to have a thorough understanding of the unique characteristics of the job you are interviewing against. Gain some insight, to the extent possible, into the candidate’s basic personality traits. Again, not just what they can do, but how they do it will determine the best fit for your position. Get a solid appreciation for how the candidate will fit into your unique work environment and culture. Just because they did well at your competitor’s company does not mean they will do well at yours. 

Knowledge Check: 1. During an interview, you should get a general sense of all of the below except:

  • the candidate's overall attributes as they relate to the requirements of the job
  • the candidate's religious beliefs
  • the candidate's basic personality traits
  • specific skills the candidate is bringing to the job
  • none of the above. All of the above represent information we should gather of all candidates.

The Five Deadly Sins of Job Interviewing

We're too busy to take the extra time!

Most leaders do not take the necessary time to manage the interview process. Give it the time it deserves. This is one of the most important decisions you can make as a leader. We know everyone is busy. The more time you invest into the interview process will mean potentially less time having to manage a poor performer. 

I get bored if I do it the same way.

The interview should become routine for you. If you know you will be interviewing for the same position many times during the year, then develop a process to make it easy on you. Have a standard set of questions for each job and be ready to add to it depending on the candidate’s experience. Why reinvent the wheel every time you have to interview? 

The candidate was brilliant. She agreed with everything I said.

You should be talking about 20% of the time or less. 

The more you talk, the less you will learn about the candidate. Your job is to ask a question, then react, comment, and perhaps ask a follow-on or deeper level question. 

The "Horn" and 'Halo' effect.

Do not fall in or out of love with a particular aspect of a candidate. Just because they also like or dislike your favorite baseball team or graduated from the same school does not mean they will be a successful hire. Be aware of these tendencies and keep your feelings in check. 

"I taught Sigmund Freud everything he knows."

Leave your couch at home. Try not to seek out the subconscious meaning behind everything the candidate said. Try to stay as objective as possible during the interview.