When it comes to effective interviewing, knowledge is power!
And acquiring that knowledge starts with asking the right questions.The interview questions you pose greatly impact your ability to determine whether or not a candidate is a strong match for the position. Obviously, you need to cover the basics to assess job skills and experience. But beyond those informational-type questions, how can ensure a candidate has the right mindset, the right soft skills, and the right personality to thrive on the job?
Ask behavioral interview questions.
The premise of behavioral interviewing is simple: the most accurate predictor of future job performance is past performance in similar situations. Candidates who can provide real-world examples of the behaviors or traits you desire are likely to behave similarly in your available role.
But what are the right questions to ask? The ones you pose should logically be driven by the type of role you’re filling, as well as your organizational culture. To help get you started, our Cool Springs recruiters share a few of their favorites, which you can customize to suit your needs.
5 Revealing Behavioral Interview Questions
- Tell me about your prior work relationships. How have you made friends at work? Look for signs that the individual is adept at forging friendships in a variety of settings (i.e., with peers, supervisors, subordinates, etc.). Examples of lasting work relationships signal that a candidate truly cares about people.
- Who is your greatest inspiration, and why? This question provides insight as to after whom an individual models his behavior. Look for evidence of behavioral patterns, ethics or values which align with success in your available position.
- Describe a situation in which you failed to reach a goal. What happened, and how did you respond? Look for evidence of resilience and perseverance. Candidates with a healthy attitude view failures as temporary setbacks – and try again.
- Tell me about a conflict you had with your team. How did you handle the situation? Use this question to assess the candidate’s ability to effectively and professionally manage confrontations.
- How has your mood impacted your work performance – either positively or negatively? Look for clues that the individual understands his own emotions and controls his outward behavior in spite of them.
A Word of Caution
Critics of behavioral interviewing state that the questions themselves cue candidates to share only success stories (and avoid sharing failures). Don’t fall into this trap. When creating your list of behavioral interview questions, structure them to elicit both positives (i.e., examples of success) and negatives (i.e., examples of where the candidate fell short or failed).
If you look back at the questions above, you’ll notice that we included both success- and failure-oriented questions. Why? Experience has shown us that you can develop a much more complete picture of a candidate’s ethics, character and soft skills by learning how he succeeds as well as how he responds to/describes failure.
Need help with hiring?
Give our Middle Tennessee recruiting experts a call. Combining behavioral interviewing techniques and a solid recruiting network with decades of experience, our team is ready to help you hire proven performers – quickly and cost-effectively.