Hiring Wisdom: Why Should You Plan For Interviews?

The most compelling reason to plan your interviews is to save time. Just 15 minutes of planning can save you an hour or more of interview and evaluation time. So, before your next interview, try the following strategy:

As you review the applicant’s paperwork, jot down your concerns about the job’s requirements and the person’s ability to meet them. Then develop the questions you’ll ask in order to get the information you need.

For each concern, write an open-ended question (one that cannot be answered by a simple “yes” or “no”) which would elicit the needed information.


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  1. Is the applicant going to get along well with others in the office? Question: Tell me about a time you had to work as part of a team.
  2. Does this applicant require a great deal of supervision? Question: Tell me about your relationship with your last supervisor.
  3. Can this person work in a rushed and hectic environment? Question: Describe a really busy time at your last job and tell me how you handled it.
  4. Will this person be a complainer? Question: Tell me about a rule or procedure at your last job that you didn’t like. What did you do about it?

Mel Kleiman will discuss how Great HR is Simple — It’s Just Not Easy at the TLNT Transform conference in Austin, TX Feb. 26-28, 2012. Click here for more information on attending this event. 

This was originally published on Mel Kleiman’s Humetrics blog.

Mel Kleiman, CSP, is an internationally-known authority on recruiting, selecting, and hiring hourly employees. He has been the president of Humetrics since 1976 and has over 30 years of practical experience, research, consulting and professional speaking work to his credit. Contact him at mkleiman@humetrics.com.


2 Comments on “Hiring Wisdom: Why Should You Plan For Interviews?

  1. I definitely found this article insightful. As an interviewer, it is part of your job to ask behavioral and probing questions. The best way to ask is in a non-threatening, “tell me about a time when you were unable to meet a deadline” etc.

    I think is is very important for the interviewer to prepare and know what information they want to get out of the process.


  2. Great article, thanks! So often people rush into interviews without preparing for them. The reality is that you’re likely interviewing a handful of people for each position, so 15 minutes of preparing the types of questions you mention above will be useful for all interviews for this particular job spec. Great examples of questions!

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