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So, Interview Tomorrow

DVGDVG No. 1 Honor StudentNether Institute, Evil AcademyRegistered User regular
edited September 2010 in Help / Advice Forum
I have an interview tomorrow, the twist being that I'm going to be asking the questions.

I've never done this before, and I've only gone on one interview in the last five years. Any advice on conducting one well?

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Posts

  • GanluanGanluan Registered User regular
    edited September 2010
    I conduct interviews often at my job.

    First off, make sure you read the applicant(s) resumes ahead of time so you have an idea of their skillset and past experience.

    You may feel nervous, but remember the applicant(s) will be much more nervous than you. I like to start off with a couple questions to help them feel more at ease, like if they had trouble finding our building, etc. If people are nervous you can't get a good reading on their personality.

    Don't try to "wing it" unless you are confident you will be able to ask the right questions. Are you going to be determining their technical skills, or questioning their work history, etc? Depending on where you work, HR usually handles certain parts of the screening so it doesn't need to be asked again.

    Make sure you ask if the applicant(s) has any questions before and after your major questioning is complete. I hate it when applicants don't ask questions about the place where they could be spending 40+ hours a week, but if you don't give them a chance to ask questions at all they may feel timid about it.

    Ganluan on
  • MichaelLCMichaelLC In what furnace was thy brain? ChicagoRegistered User regular
    edited September 2010
    Are you being interviewed, or interviewing someone else?

    Be sure to avoid questions that could get into legal/gray areas.

    Anything family or age-related is best avoided, unless it's related to the job, then be sure to ask it the same way to everyone.

    Ask questions in a way that gives you the answer without causing trouble. I.e, 'Can you be here on time?' is different than, 'Do you have a car?'

    MichaelLC on
  • NylonathetepNylonathetep Registered User regular
    edited September 2010
    First... ask general "get to know you" questions regarding your candidate. Basically start off with "Tell me a bit about yourself." and "What makes you feel you are suited for the position that we are hiring?" or the "Tell me 3 positive and 3 negatives traits that you have."


    Second.. ask questions about what you need from the person who's going to fill in the vacant job position that isn't already listed on the job posting or qualifications that isn't necessary for the job but would be a bonus if the applicatant have them... Because most job posting are skimming out on words you might want to ask more about qualifications and details. This includes stuff like work habbits Some of the examples are "Do you prefere to work alone or work in a team enviroment?" "Are you comfortable dealing with clients, giving out oral presentations, and working with clients on a daily basis?" or even stuff like "do you have experience handling cash?" "Do you have experience working with CMS/IAS, or Visual Basic/Java scripts?"

    You can also throw in some scenrio questions that can test the work habits of the applicatant like "What will you do if you realized you can't make a deadline?" or "if you overheard someone saying something that violates the policies of the company what will you do?" you can also throw in some skill testing questions here like "What's the difference between Cash accounting and Accrual Accounting?" "what trades can you make to cover your losses in a Margin call?"

    Your questions can come across as tough and some candidate might buckle down.. so don't shoot those questions straight at them. Have a little small talk in between... talk about the universities or the state they's been to, their hobbies, or let them talk about their job experience. Worst comes to worst ask them to tell you a joke and then try to laugh no matter how corny it is.

    Chances are people who are applying already can fill in the vacant role to a certain degree (if your HR department did a good job flitering applications) and the interviewer is just trying to get a sense of the candidate and see if they fit and can become a good addition to the company.

    Nylonathetep on
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  • MurphyMurphy Registered User regular
    edited September 2010
    Ugh, I'd personally avoid the bullshit questions like "tell me three negative traits you have." Because no one ever answers that honestly. I usually respond with "none of my negative traits have any effect on my work." Because seriously, it's a fluff question.

    Murphy on
  • NylonathetepNylonathetep Registered User regular
    edited September 2010
    Murphy wrote: »
    Ugh, I'd personally avoid the bullshit questions like "tell me three negative traits you have." Because no one ever answers that honestly. I usually respond with "none of my negative traits have any effect on my work." Because seriously, it's a fluff question.

    That's the thing. No one was expected to answear honestly... but the interview gets to see how the applicant lie and how far he's willing to lie.

    If he says he got no negative traits he's obnoxious or have high opinion of himself
    If he said his negative traits are positive traits (he's too hard working, too keen, etc) he's wise but not honest.
    You answear indicates that if something goes wrong you'll be the first to detach from it, but not necessarily going to play the blame game.

    Nylonathetep on
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  • SerpentSerpent Sometimes Vancouver, BC, sometimes Brisbane, QLDRegistered User regular
    edited September 2010
    Murphy wrote: »
    Ugh, I'd personally avoid the bullshit questions like "tell me three negative traits you have." Because no one ever answers that honestly. I usually respond with "none of my negative traits have any effect on my work." Because seriously, it's a fluff question.

    That answer would be a huge red flag for many hiring managers because it's a total lie.

    They know people give screwy answers. You can still read into someone based on their answers.

    Serpent on
  • Dropping LoadsDropping Loads Registered User regular
    edited September 2010
    I would also recommend avoiding kitsch questions like that. It's much more informative to ask the person to construct a scenario, like, "Tell me about a time you had a problem with a coworker and how you resolved it." You get the same opportunity to identify honesty, and they have to do more than give a prepared answer. They also have to compose a coherent narrative, and if they're bright, it gives them a chance to show how awesome they are.

    If this is for any type of job other than "show up and get money", you should ask about their motivations for the position, and what they think about that type of work. i.e. "How long do you see yourself in online advertising?" or whatever.

    Dropping Loads on
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  • RyscaRysca Registered User regular
    edited September 2010
    I like to ask the interviewee to describe characteristics of their ideal and worst boss and why. It gives good insight into what management style(s) they work well with and whether or not it meshes with the current organizations management hierarchy.

    Rysca on
  • MurphyMurphy Registered User regular
    edited September 2010
    Serpent wrote: »
    Murphy wrote: »
    Ugh, I'd personally avoid the bullshit questions like "tell me three negative traits you have." Because no one ever answers that honestly. I usually respond with "none of my negative traits have any effect on my work." Because seriously, it's a fluff question.

    That answer would be a huge red flag for many hiring managers because it's a total lie.

    They know people give screwy answers. You can still read into someone based on their answers.

    It's not a total lie at all. It's a bullshit answer to a bullshit question. But it can be an honest one. Sure, I may have negative traits, but they usually have absolutely nothing to do with the job I'm interviewing for. And I can make up some "Well, I have trouble delegating sometimes." or "Sometimes I work too hard." answers, but they've heard that shit a million times, and it's not going to tell them anything other than that you're unimaginative.

    Which I suppose is useful. I still think it's fluff though.

    edit: I'd much rather have an applicant tell me what they liked most about jobs they have had in the past, what kind of management style they prefer, what they would do in specific situations, etc.

    Murphy on
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