Hire Better with Better Questions

March 7, 2018  |  Posted by in Leadership Development, Sales Training

Guest author: Jamie Crosbie CEO – ProActivate®

You are probably familiar with the idea of an elevator speech, or prepping for a big interview, but may not have given much thought to the flip side of the hiring coin. Interviewees should be prepared, but so should the one conducting the interview.

Poor phrasing, rushing through an interview or not being engaged fully in the process can be just as disastrous for a company as not having qualified candidates. In a nutshell, if your hiring manager does not do their job right, they can easily sail past a good hire in favor of one that is going to provide nothing but endless headaches for the company.

The first step in this process is to make sure that the job descriptions and duties are clearly spelled out and well understood – on both sides. In larger companies where the HR department may not really understand the ins and outs of the position, some things can get lost in translation.

Research has shown that there is a real link between a poorly worded job description and higher rates of turnover. Companies that do not conduct a genuine job analysis, including working conditions and scope of work and duties, will turn away qualified candidates and instead lure in ones that can’t run with the big dogs.

Question and Then Listen to What Is Really Being Said

Next, take some time to really think about what you need in terms of qualifications. Once you know that, you can craft deeper questions. The questions are going to differ from position to position. Instead of questions by rote, think about things like team dynamics, what drives real productivity and the like. Questions might include:

  • “What have you accomplished in life or work that you want to replicate in the future, and why?” Understanding what they have overcome and where they are headed can help you understand their true potential.
  • “What big mistakes have you made? What did you learn from them?” If they cannot point to a mistake in life or in the workplace, or explain something they have learned, it may mean that they are not committed to growth.
  • “What is something you are very familiar with that is complex? Can you explain it to me in five minutes?” This kind of question highlights their ability to grasp complicated issues as well as their ability to communicate.
  • “Can you tell me about a group related workplace challenge from your past?” Asking about group dynamics can show if they seem bent on fault finding or solving problems.

Try to get a sense of the underlying traits of candidates instead of a simple run-down of their previous experience. After all, experience can always be added, but a jerk is probably going to be a jerk no matter what their background and resume says.


About the Author:

Jamie Crosbie CEO Proactivate

Jamie Crosbie is CEO and founder of ProActivate®, a leading provider of highly qualified, fully vetted sales professionals and sales leaders. Carew International has partnered with ProActivate to provide exceptional sales talent acquisition services to our valued customers. ProActivate is headquartered in Dallas, Texas and serves companies globally. For more information, call 214-720-9922 or email jcrosbie@proactivate.net.

All content and training concepts are the intellectual property of Carew International, Inc., and any reference to these concepts must include a statement of express ownership by Carew International, Inc.


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