After conducting enough interviews, you have a list of questions memorized you can almost rattle off unconsciously. These include hits like:
- What is your greatest weakness?
- Where do you see yourself in five years?
- Name a time you went above and beyond your role.
Just because these questions are common doesn’t mean they’re not useful. However, most applicants will definitely see them coming.
So consider asking the following questions as well.
1) What Do You Know about the Company?
Start out with this one. Most people will be able to tell you general features about the position they’re applying for. Much fewer will be able to do the same for your company and an even smaller number will be able to tell you detailed information about it.
This is important because you should want to hire someone who is passionate about your company. Ideally, you want someone who doesn’t just look at this position as another job. You want someone who will see it as a vocation.
2) How Do You Work Best?
By this we’re wondering about the environment that is best for them. Do they prefer to work alone, in a team, out on the floor, in an office, etc.? This should also cover how they prefer to be managed—do they like constant supervision or being left alone once the directions are given?
3) How Would You Handle…?
Give them a specific example of a challenge you can foresee them having to handle in the position you’re interviewing for. Be fair, however, and pick a scenario they could reasonably take a stab at. If you choose something unique to your company that they couldn’t possibly know anything about, you’re just hurting your chances of hiring a great candidate.
4) What Is Your Ideal Job?
Every candidate is going to be tempted to mention the one they’re interviewing for. If they do, they better have answered that initial question well. You should still consider pushing them to ensure they’re being honest and not just giving the easy answer to look good.
Don’t take it personally if candidates mention another position. Take this as an opportunity to view their strengths and passions on display. Be grateful for their honesty, too.
A company is only as good as the people they hire. Remember that, when you interview applicants and use the above questions. While you can use plenty of others you may prefer, those we covered here deviate from the norm while still providing you important information.