How often do hiring managers ask the best interview questions?

It just seems logical that asking the best interview questions are the best way to determine the quality of your next hire. While that’s part of the answer, it’s not the complete answer. And, based on my 40+ years of experience asking the best interview questions doesn’t happen all that often. This is why interviewing skills for supervisors and managers become so important.

To prove to yourself that your hiring teams likely aren’t really using consistent, proven interview questions, just gather the interview questions from each member of a hiring team recruiting for a specific job and compare them. Interviewing and selecting top talent is at the top of hiring manager responsibilities.

Keep in mind that we’re only talking about the interview questions at this point. How the answers are assessed and followed up on is also a key part of interviewing success, but is the subject of a separate article.

Make interview questions relevant to job success

A key part to asking the best interview questions starts with defining what “success looks like” in the job. We use Hiring Success Profiles as the basis for our recruiting and hiring process. Once you’ve accurately described your job this way, asking the right questions becomes easier and much clearer. I recommend my 3+2 interview question method (covered in a separate article).

Get rid of nonsense interview questions

Some rather well-known employers have their own set of what I call nonsense questions. I call them that because they don’t relate to success, at least in the format there’re asked. Click the + for an example of these types of questions.

  • Why is a manhole round?
  • How are M&M’s made?
  • How many golf balls are in the US?
  • If you were a tree in the forest, what kind of tree would you be?

Don’t use this type of question. If you feel that the answer somehow relates to an individual being a top performer in your job, ask yourself, “What am I trying to measure or understand about the person’s response?” Now, take whatever that is and ask a question in the context of what a person needs to do in order to be a top employee in the job.

Don’t ask illegal interview questions

The purpose of this article is not to explore interview questions that are illegal except to say, avoid questions that would or could cause a candidate to feel they’re being discriminated against because of questions about their race, gender, religion, marital status, age, disabilities, ethnic background, country of origin, sexual preferences or age.

How better interview questions are structured

What follows is some proven interview tips for the hiring manager they can begin using right away. I’ll show you how to discover them for yourself.

My 3+2 interview question method really consists of three questions that are encapsulated into two techniques, hence the name.

  1. The trend of your job performance over time. (success consistency pattern)
  2. The extent of work that you’ve done that is comparable. (past based)
  3. How you would go about solving or handling some of the most important elements of the job. (future based)

The reason this method is so powerful and easy to remember and use is because my three questions form the foundation for the interview. Of course you’ll ask a number of additional questions, but these are part of one of the techniques. Once you know the root question and understand the technique, you’ll be able to interview anyone, regardless of position level or occupation.

Customized interviewing and selection

We often design custom interviewing and selection training for hiring managers from organizations both large and small and across many different industries.

Once you have asked the right questions, the next step is to assess the answers to the questions. This deserves separate articles, but for now, the interview answer assessment must be structured. This provides a way to evaluate every candidate for a specific job using the same standards. The method also ensures that everyone on the hiring team is using the same ‘yard stick’ to measure with. And lastly, it will ensure that you do not run afoul of illegal interview questions.

Find out more…

Call Carl Bradford for a more detailed discussion of his 3+2 interview question method and discover how easy it will be for you to begin using that in your business. And, how much more accurate you will be at predicting top performance before you ever get to the job offer stage.

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