George Bradt described in a Forbes article that what matters in an interview is to find the answers for three basic questions:
- Can they do the job?
- Will they love the job?
- Can we tolerate working with you? (For this I’d like to suggest; can we work together and satisfy each other’s goals)
Now, it would be quite an awkward interview if you were to ask these three questions outright. I suggest you classify these three questions into skills, motivation and fit.
The best way to do this is to create a framework of questions that address what skills, motivation and fit that you need from the candidate to become a valued employee.
Skills – do they meet the requirements of the role? i.e. experience, qualifications, certifications etc. What are their transferable skills? Do they have a proven track record? I like focusing on hard skills because they are measurable.
Motivation – find out what is important to the candidate. What are their goals and ambitions? Can you help fulfil these goals, or will they leave before they can actively contribute to the role/organisation? Do they have the right energy, attitude, and disciplines to consistently achieve?
Fit – Will they suit the core values of your company? How will they work with their direct supervisor? How will they build work relationships with their peers and colleagues? Will they provide the service at the standard that you require? Will they consistently achieve the KPI’ s/outcomes needed for the role? Can they fulfil future succession plans in the future? My rule of thumb is, if the candidate a consistent pattern of negativity, then more than likely that negativity will continue in their next role. Remember people can have a bad day or a bad experience with a previous employer. This does not mean that they are a rotten apple. It just means you need to continue your candidate due diligence.
Interviews can be conducted as one-on-one, panel interviews, group interviews or even an interview during lunch. The interview can be structured, unstructured, behaviour-based, task-oriented, or informational. Regardless of how you decide to conduct and structure your interviews, it is essential to assess the candidate’s skills, motivation and fit.
I will let you in on one of my tricks. I tailor my reference checks to verify and to gain further information from the interview. It is one of the best ways to find out how to best manage your new valued employee.