Welcome back! We’re excited to continue down the behavioral interview process path with you today! If you’ve been following along, you’ll know we’ve already discussed why it’s so important to implement a thoughtful, deliberate interview process by highlighting the true cost of a bad hire. We then made sure to “check our packs,” by ensuring that we’re as prepared as we can possibly be for this very important journey. Hiring an ideal candidate is a leadership action that can have lasting positive effects on your work environment!
Today, we’re ready to hit the road! Your candidate is here and waiting, and you’re excited about the future. This blog post is designed to give you a basic overview of the interview; it’s actually a condensed version of Pathway Design Group’s “Hire to Fit” curriculum, which you can inquire about here.
Checkpoint 1: Starting the Journey
Remember: Don’t divulge too much about your company in this interview, especially right at the beginning.
It might seem simple, but kicking off the interview on a positive, efficient note can set the tone for the entire process. It’s important to keep the tone warm and welcoming, without seeming too familiar or casual. This will ensure that the interview provides an environment that is comfortable enough to get honest, candid answers from the candidate, without losing the professionalism necessary for an efficient, effective meeting.
Make sure you start by thanking the candidate for being there, as well as introducing any of the other interviewers who will be present. No one likes answering questions with nameless faces staring at them!
Remember: Don’t divulge too much about your company in this interview, especially right at the beginning. Candidates can read that information and use it to tailor their answers toward you, which simply won’t give you the most accurate picture of this individual!
Checkpoint 2: Ability to Walk the Path
There are many facets that make up a “good hire,” and they range from “ethereal and hard-to-pin-down” to “clear-cut and non-negotiable.”
This first part is the “clear-cut and non-negotiable” portion of the interview. If you ask the right questions, you’ll be able to make your job much easier when it’s time to deliberate within your hiring team. While there are always exceptions that we can’t rule out, this portion of the interview is a longer, nuanced version of a yes/no question: Does this candidate possess the concrete skills needed in order to perform the very basic functions of this job?
When asked properly, these questions will bring about answers that will bolster your confidence in your hiring decision.
Checkpoint 3: Mentally Prepared for the Journey
The emotional and interpersonal atmosphere of a workplace can make or break its success and efficiency.
This checkpoint is the more ethereal portion of the interview, but it’s in no way less important! Once you’ve got a good handle on the candidate’s concrete skills and abilities, it’s time to move onto something a little more emotional.
The emotional and interpersonal atmosphere of a workplace can make or break its success and efficiency. Choosing a candidate who is emotionally-intelligent enough to navigate workplace conflict or challenges elegantly can transform your organization into a powerful, positive force to be reckoned with!
Soft skills like team building or conflict resolution can be difficult to gauge, which is why the way you ask these questions is so incredibly important. For a more detailed, specific guide to asking these questions, we recommend that you enroll in our Hire to Fit session, where we share specific examples of what soft skill questions to ask and how to ask them in order to get the clearest, most useful answers.
Checkpoint 4: Willingness to Make the Journey
You’ve heard the phrase, “You can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make it drink,” right?
In the workplace, it’s no different. You can train and educate and train and educate day in and day out, but if the passion and drive of the hire does not match the levels you need in a thriving company, the success of that position (and, ultimately, the organization as a whole) will likely stand still and stagnate.
Asking about passion and drive can be difficult to do, however, without leading the candidate. Of course, they’re going to say they’re “passionate about success” and “ready to go above and beyond” when they’re asked directly — it’s imperative to find ways to explore their passion without letting them know exactly what you’re asking about.
Checkpoint 5: Desire to Read the Map Provided
If you hire someone with only hard skills in mind and they apply for the position with only cash flow in mind, you’re setting both parties up for mediocrity — or worse.
The next checkpoint works hand-in-hand with the previous one: If an employee doesn’t believe in the mission and culture of your company, they will not fully-expend their effort toward its success.
That phrasing, “your company” is important here. If you hire someone with only hard skills in mind and they apply for the position with only cash flow in mind, you’re setting both parties up for mediocrity — or worse.
Asking the right questions about philosophy, motivation, and values can turn “your company” into “our company,” and that is how you all soar to exciting new heights.
Cultural alignment in a hire is imperative — skipping this step is a grave error on the path to a successful hire and will steer you in a much more costly direction.
Survey Your Destination
If you’ve followed the path this far, it means you’ve reached the trail’s end… but that doesn’t mean it’s time to pack up and head home! It’s important to truly take in your destination, and reflect upon the path that led you there.
If you would like more specific details on the Behavioral Interview Process, we would like to encourage you to get in touch with us! Our curriculum is designed to give you a thorough, easy-to-follow guidebook that will lead you down the path we’ve highlighted in this post in greater detail, including specific questions for each step and how to ask them. For more information, head on over to our contact page.
We can’t wait to see you out there!