DRS: Daelemans - Rens - Steenackers

Executive Search Consultants

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Tips for interviewers

Here are some things you can do to enhance the effectiveness of interviews.

  • An interview should never be interrupted; interruptions imply that other things are more important than the appointment.
  • Make sure all phones are switched off.
  • Allocate enough time to spend with the candidate.
  • Try to create an open, relaxed atmosphere. There is no need to be too formal. This is an interview after all, not an interrogation!
  • Don't talk too much. A common pitfall for interviewers is to fill the gaps in the conversation. Short silences are OK.
  • Give the candidate time to think and answer.
  • Listen to the answer. Many people are busy thinking about the next question or how they would have responded to the question just asked.
  • Probe for examples and ask how and why actions were taken by the candidate
  • Ask open-ended questions. For example don't say, "Are you a good manager?". Ask instead, "What do you do that encourages people to follow you?"
  • Probe, probe, probe. When the candidate makes a general statement ask, "Why do you say that? Can you give me an example?"

Some areas that can be probed using open-ended questions:

  • Technical skills
  • Industry knowledge
  • Product knowledge
  • Potential to take on more responsibility
  • Business development skills
  • Interpersonal skills
  • Negotiating skills
  • Values and ethics
  • Maturity
  • Skills as a leader
  • Team skills
  • Reasons for job changes
  • Interest in the opportunity being discussed

How an interview is closed can impact a candidate's subsequent decision. So ensure that at the end of the interview the candidate feels that he/she has had an adequate opportunity to demonstrate suitability for the job and has had the opportunity to find out what he/she needs to know about the job.

Finally, take time to explain the next steps in the recruitment process; dates when the candidate can expect to have an indication of whether the company wishes to take things further and likely dates for the next round of interviews or expected starting date.