Interviewing potential employees is a skill.

As people we tend to gravitate toward certain types of personalities naturally. Many employers inexperienced in interviewing make the classic mistake of hiring people that they liked rather than people who may be the best for the job.  Here’s how to avoid that trap.

Always have an written interview plan.

Always go into an interviewing process with a written interview plan. In doing this you will be able to compare the candidates more rationally with each other and stay on track. This will shorten the interviews somewhat and make your time much more productive.

Focus on skills.

If you hire a person that you really liked at the interview but who just lacks the skills you need in the role, you are going to regret the hire after they’ve started.

Prepare a list of skills and degree of experience required for the position. Check the skills off on your list before agreeing to meet with any of the candidates. You only want to meet people who are actually able to do the job you are advertising.

Consider the personality type required for the position.

Once you have identified the required skills and the level that they must be at for this position with your position analysis https://hrdocs.co.nz/product/job-analysis/  then consider the personality type who might be the best fit. That is a different thing to considering the personality type of the person sitting in front of you. Once you understand the type you need for the role and for your team, it’s much easier to filter the candidates..

To uncover personality type, ask the person how others would describe them. If you ask someone how they describe themselves, you will no doubt uncover how they wish to be perceived. In asking how others describe them you may get a clearer picture of who they are and what type of role they best fit with. Asking them what their best ever job was and why allows you more insight in this area.

Next, ask situational questions such as ‘give me an example of how you have gone the extra mile for customer service’ and watch carefully how spontaneous the response is. A quick and natural response to a situational interview question is generally an honest one. You can find an excellent list of situational interview questions we recommend for employers here  https://hrdocs.co.nz/product/competency-based-interview-questions-answers/

Ask open questions and listen to the tone of the answers.

Ask open questions starting with How What When and Who to allow the candidate to express themselves. Listen for cues on how positive their mindset is and how open to new ideas they are.

If you are interviewing people who you are confident have the right skills for the job, you are now focussing on fit with the team and the attitude & experience that will come into your business.

Allow the candidate to ask you questions about your business.

Allowing the candidate to ask you questions lets you understand how proactive the person would be in your business and get a feel for how well she or he may fit in with the team you already have. One person can change a team environment enormously – so pay attention to the things that are and are not said!

Getting the right employees makes the difference between you and your business thriving and struggling, so it pays to spend a little time setting yourself up for future success with interviewing techniques that remove the personality factor and focus on skills & attitude.

For more information on HR processes required for running your business with productive employees without risk of oversight or risk of grievance, view this FREE webinar: