Behavioral interviewing has become so common that many job candidates prepare for it. If you are still asking the same questions you were last decade, chances are your interviewees have planned out their responses in advance. These answers will be polished until they shine, but say little about each candidate as a person. Just because the old questions aren’t as good as they once were, it doesn’t mean you should scrap the whole idea of behavioral interview questions. That is why you need a new methodology ï behavioral interviewing reinvented for the modern job candidate. Use these five steps to get a complete picture of your job candidate.
Prepare Follow-up Questions
Good follow-up questions have two goals. The first is to make sure your job candidate hasn’t created some fantasy answer just to get the job. Follow-up questions can weed out places where details were not thought of in advance, too many hesitations or contradictions are red flags about the validity of an answer. The second purpose is just to help you get to know the candidate a little better. Maybe the first response you receive is fairly common or vague on the details, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Follow-up questions will help you build a better picture of your candidate as a human being, which is the whole point of behavioral questions in the first place.
Look for Evidence of Repeat Behaviors
Without getting too repetitive, it’s a good idea to ask similar behavioral questions about multiple jobs in a candidate’s work history. With this technique, you’re being a detective and trying to spot any inconsistencies. You will also be using these multiple examples to figure out your candidate’s pattern of behavior. One shining example of good behavior might seem sufficient, but multiple instances are even better. This way you’re doing more than guessing at possible behaviors, you’re correctly using behavioral interviewing reinvented.
Ask Questions About Personal Growth
It’s important that before wrapping up a line of questioning about a certain behavior, accomplishment or customer interaction, you find out what the interviewee learned from the experience. Is there anything they plan on doing differently the next time around? How did the situation influence later decisions and job performance? What advice would they give a friend or coworker facing the same incident? All of these are great ways to gauge whether a job candidate has the level of personal reflection necessary to succeed.
Avoid Arbitrary Questions
Another aspect of behavioral interviewing reinvented is for the interviewer to become more focused on the goal of learning a candidate’s behavior. Go back through all the questions you have prepared so far. Are any vague, broad or arbitrary? Do you have anything that ought to be answered by the resume? Cut those questions out; you don’t need them! You have a limited time with each job candidate and shouldn’t be wasting it on things you already know or items you don’t need to know. You should also closely examine technical questions. Make sure you are qualified to ask, understand and interpret these kinds of questions. If not, have someone in that department do the asking.
Keep a Mindset of Discovery
An interview is not a script. It’s not meant to be played out line by line to some arbitrary goal. Behavioral interviewing reinvented isn’t going to give you a cookie-cutter interview methodology. All of these steps are really heading you toward one purpose: discovery. You want to know more about your potential employee. You need a clear picture in your mind of who this person is, how they react to problems, what they count as personal accomplishments, and where they are heading. That means abandoning the flowchart and asking questions as they come up. Don’t only ask your candidate questions, also ask yourself questions. What more do you want to know? What other information is helpful for you? Is there some deciding factor you haven’t hit upon yet? Now you’re ready to go beyond a candidate’s qualifications into who they really are. Behavioral interview questions have become so useful, sometimes they’re the deciding factor between two top candidates. This great tool is better than ever now. It’s behavioral interviewing reinvented and it’s going to change the way you learn about your interviewee. Using this updated way of thinking, you can get around good coaching to the actual heart of your candidate. It doesn’t take long and the results are well worth it. Don’t forget to browse other topics and tools here at Mighty Recruiter, we’ve put together top quality advice meant to help you find the right person for any job.