HOW TO USE YOUR TIME MOST EFFECTIVELY
Interviews invariably interrupt your daily routine and throw you
off schedule. Worse, if the process gets stretched out over a period
of weeks, your recollections of the first people you interviewed are
vague and the best candidate may have taken another job.
Try this: Block out time -- an afternoon or whole day -- to conduct
initial screening interviews of several candidates. Shut out all
interruptions and limit your interviews to 45 minutes. That way you
can make immediate comparisons and save the lengthy "Cook's Tour"
for the one or two finalists.
HOW TO TELL WHICH IS THE BEST CANDIDATE
Interviewing can be a difficult task because judging the talents and abilities of people
is very subjective. And when you add personal chemistry and motivation to the formula for
finding the right person, the selection process can become downright intimidating.
Approach the process without preconceived ideas of the "successful candidate."
There is no magic in "a minimum of 5 years experience" or a certain kind of degree.
They are only artificial benchmarks that serve to complicate the process with criteria that
may not be necessary or even relevant.
Try this: Focus on a performance based interview which will determine assessing past
performance and determining job competency.
ACHIEVING YOUR INTERVIEW OBJECTIVES
You must accomplish three objectives in an interview within a limited time period
(it shouldn't be more than an hour at most):
- Uncover the experience that qualifies the candidate who can do your job
- Evaluate the personal chemistry of the candidate to match your company's values
- Sell the candidate on the opportunity with your company
That's why it's so important to know what you are going to ask in the first interview,
and to be sure that you maintain consistency by covering the same ground with all of the candidates.
THE PERFORMANCE BASED INTERVIEW
In order to achieve your interviewing objectives you need to ask questions that
are performance based to go along with the Performance Profile.
These questions go hand in hand with the Performance Profile and are fact finding based.
This will help establish if the candidate is the right candidate for the job.
- Before you meet any candidates, write down a series of questions about professional
experience, technical knowledge and career accomplishments you wish to know about each person.
- They should consist of Assessing Past Performance, Team Leadership, Determining Job Competency,
Unlocking Character/Values, Revealing personality and cultural fit.
- Have them typed (leave space between questions to write in answers) and duplicate the form.
- (Contact us for more details about Performance based interview questionnaires)
- With your Performance based interview sheet in hand, you should be able to get the basic
information you want from each candidate.
DON'T DISCUSS MONEY on the first interview unless you are ready to make an offer at that time.
Discuss compensation AFTER you've determined that a candidate CAN DO THE JOB.
SELLING YOUR COMPANY AND JOB OPPORTUNITY
If you like what you've heard in an interview, be sure the candidate leaves enthusiastic about the opportunity with your company. Whether you intend to make an offer immediately or will need to refer the candidate to others for additional interviews, don't assume that candidates are eager to go to work for you! If you like this person, chances are other employers will be favorably impressed also, so you need to highlight the benefits of working for you.
Try this: Emphasize positive points relating to your industry, company, position and job environment and values.
- Industry-- What are the forecasts for growth in your industry? How about industry stability? Is it a cyclical industry?
- Company -- How does your company compare with your competitors? What was your growth for the past 3-5 years? What are your projections for the next 3 years? Why should those goals be achieved?
- Position -- If the position is available because of a recent promotion or company growth, that's an important selling point. What will the candidate gain in career growth? What is the visibility of this position and its impact on the company?
- Job environment and values -- What are your corporate values? What tangible evidence is there that your corporate values are being achieved? Describe your physical facilities.
There is no such thing as the perfect candidate. That's why it's so vital to remain focused on the critical job duties throughout the interviewing process. As soon as the interview is concluded, while the meeting is fresh in your mind, summarize your thoughts about the candidate.
Try this: Prepare a simple balance sheet to
record your reactions. Headline the left side "Reasons for Hiring" and the right side "Reasons for Concern." Don't be surprised if the person you like best doesn't seem to fit your original idea of what you wanted. In fact, that kind of conclusion may indicate that you successfully established your real needs and made the best use of the interviewing process.
A final word of caution. The best candidates have several options -- only one of which is joining your company. When you find a person you like, cut the red tape to accelerate the hiring process. Unnecessary delays often send the wrong signal to a candidate. If your best prospect becomes disenchanted and loses interest, then your screening time and skilled interview techniques have been wasted.
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