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Hiring Managers: How to Interview Better

In this war for talent, we have to give our hiring managers the BEST chance to make good hiring decisions, right?

It shocks us how few companies take the time to train their managers on interviewing best practices. Seriously why wouldn’t you train the people who decide WHO gets through your company doors? In this competitive landscape, we advise our clients that they must invest in educating and empowering their employees to increase the chances that every single hire will be GREAT.

For all hiring managers who have not been trained yet, here are 5 simple tips for you BEFORE you interview a candidate:

1. As a hiring manager, you NEED to identify what success looks like in the job.

What does someone have to DO to be successful? This includes specific deliverables, milestones and attributes that are needed to be successful in the role. What needs to be accomplished at 3 months? 6 months? 12 months?

2. You MUST have a clear understanding of not only your culture but also what would someone have to DO to be a good culture-fit?

Companies historically hire people with the most experience and the best degrees, but we have found over the last decade working with companies, across all industries, that the qualifications on paper mean nothing – if someone does not fit a company’s culture.

3. Throw out the Resume!

Who writes the resume? The candidate! Don’t allow the interview to be guided by only what is in a candidate’s resume. Instead come up with a list of criteria they have to DO successfully and customize questions around that ? and NOT the resume the candidate wrote.

4. PLEASE avoid asking only open-ended behavioral questions.

This type of question allows for canned, prepped responses, and more importantly tell you how someone performed in a different position, in a different culture and under different expectations. Instead we recommend asking situational-based and accomplishment driven questions.

5. Many companies are not consistently completing & asking for references.

What most companies say to us is: why should I call on a list of people they have me and they know will say great things about them? FAIR point.

That is why we tell companies to Don’t Ask, TELL! Rather than asking for a list of references a hiring manager needs to TELL the candidate which colleague, boss, customer, client they want to talk to based on who is most relevant from that candidate’s background.

What do you think should be on our list? How do you prepare your hiring managers to make great hires?