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How To Interview Correctly

…and recruit the right people for your business

Today, small business owners face many challenges. One of the most difficult challenges is hiring the right employees. The difficulties surrounding the hiring process include: cost of recruitment, training, management and last but not least, the frustration of employee turnover. I believe the solution to the above difficulties lies at the beginning of the hiring process, in other words, the interview.

As many business owners know, finding the right employee is just as difficult as running any other aspect of the business. Therefore, more emphasis should be placed on the interview itself. Many small business owners do their own hiring and training. Unfortunately, when a small business owner is lacking the proper training and experience, he or she is often faced with the dreaded issue of high employee turnover. Here are some solutions to alleviate this recurring problem:

  1. Be prepared to explain the position’s responsibilities and difficulties. Make sure to research the position you are trying to fill so you can answer any questions the candidate might ask. By gaining a thorough knowledge of the job in question, you will be able to give the candidate a better understanding of the type of employee you are looking to hire. Don’t be afraid to scare the candidate away with your questions. It is better to find out during the interview if the candidate is a good fit. All of the interview work was for nothing if the candidate quits or doesn’t meet the necessary responsibilities. Save yourself the time, money and effort.
  2. Provide a description of the type of employee necessary for the position. Explain to the candidates precisely what type of person you are looking for. Ask them about their prior experiences and how these experiences match the qualifications you are seeking. By letting the candidates explain their experiences and accomplishments, you can gain a better idea of how they can meet the needs of your business. This allows you to avoid any unrelated topics and provides for a more efficient interview process.
  3. Avoid standard interview questions. It is important to avoid the standard questions often used during interviews as these may lead to canned interview responses. Hiring someone for your business is like bringing a person into your home. By asking questions that allow the candidate’s personality to peek through, you are gaining a glimpse of the type of employee the person truly is rather than the type of employee the candidate is attempting to portray.
  4. Determine the style of the interview. The interview should be conducted in the same manner you run your business. It doesn’t have to be formal. There is no need for black ties. The goal of any successful interview is to “see” the person, make them feel relaxed and at home and show that you are hiring in an effort to further the candidate’s career as opposed to simply offering a job. You can do this by asking some initial “ice breaker” questions. These questions allow both you and the candidate to speak candidly which provides both parties a better understanding of one another. This often leads to greater communication between the interviewer and the candidate.