As part of our 600 Interesting and Useful Things for Recruiters series Simon Lewis of Only Marketing Jobs, rather bravely, shares his thoughts on the 10 interview questions every recruiter needs in their armoury!
1. What circumstance brings you here today?
One of the best opening questions ever, where candidates reveal problems with their current employer, potential insubordination, and both positive or negative character traits.
2. What’s the biggest risk you’ve ever taken?
Studies indicate that people who take risks are generally more successful than those who do not. But too many mavericks in one organisation can be disruptive…Discussion on this can be very revealing.
3. Describe someone outside your field of interest who inspires you and why?
This question identifies motivations and affords personality insights.
4. What’s the biggest mistake you’ve made in your life and how have you overcome it?
The candidate is forced to open up and be honest, whilst allowing the interviewer an opportunity to explore how the candidate handles challenges.
5. What’s your favourite animal and why?
Sub-consciously most people consider an animal they believe most accurately personifies them. This is a good question to identify personality traits.
6. When I call your old boss what will they say about you?
Other than asserting the point that you will be taking references, this question asks the candidate to think about how they feel they are perceived by their previous (or current) employer, testing their ability to think on the spot and align the answer to the job they are interviewing for.
7. What makes you angry?
Helps understand personality traits and motivations.
8. If you inherited an acre of land what would you do with it?
This question helps explore the candidate’s personality and creativity.
9. What are you most passionate about?
The answer doesn’t really matter but the way they answer does. The best candidates respond very quickly, sit forward slightly and are usually very animated. Never hire anyone without a passion for something.
10. If you could be anyone else who would it be?
Provides the opportunity for further analysis of personality traits and creativity. Also a great way to end the interview – usually a bit of a chuckle and a ready-made nickname when they start!