Our business is unique for many reasons; one of them is that we’re the people most likely to enjoy job interviews. Of course, we do them so often that they can become a little dull, so it’s never a bad idea to try a new style of questioning.
Here are some potential questions to ask that might tell you more about a candidate’s history and their personality. We’ve divided these questions into two groups: stories and queries. Today, we look at the stories you can ask candidates to tell.
Stories can provide specific examples of how a candidate has performed under the sorts of conditions that are likely to arise in the position for which you’re interviewing them. They can also give examples of a particular skill or talent a candidate has; for instance, instead of asking “Do you know Photoshop?”, try “Tell me about a time when you used Photoshop and how you used it.”
These questions all begin with “Tell me about a time when you…”. We’ve made some suggestions for possible endings, based on what you’d like to learn.
Their best conditions and outcomes:
- Tell me about a time when you worked on a great team
- Tell me about a time when you completed a major accomplishment.
- Tell me about a time when you showed leadership.
- Tell me about a time when you showed creativity/excellent customer service/problem-solving skills/whatever you’re looking for in the applicant.
Their worst conditions:
- Tell me about a time when you were subject to a decision you thought was unfair.
- Tell me about a time when you had a disagreement with your manager.
- Tell me about a time when you had to deal with conflict in a working situation.
- Tell me about a time when you worked hard to accomplish something, but it didn’t work out.
Triumph over adversity:
- Tell me about a time when you had to meet a tight deadline.
- Tell me about a time when you handled a crisis well.
- Tell me about a time when you overcame a challenge.
- Tell me about a time when you had a major learning experience, and what you learned.
Of course, it’s probably best to add your own ending to these questions, based on what matters most to you for the position and your client.
What are some possible endings you’d use? Have you ever received any unexpected answers to these types of questions? (You know you have!) Let us know in the comments?