Screening candidates will never go out of style, but doing it via the phone or in-person… will. With video interviewing, a series of predetermined talent review questions can be asked of each applicant to help make better decisions of who to invite to the next round. If you’ve already adopted video interviewing into your candidate screening process, congrats! Make sure to check out one of our most popular articles on the ClearCompany blog to see the best talent questions to ask in a video interview.
“What kinds of things do you like doing outside of work?"
This might sound like a question you’d use to buy time until you can muster a more substantial one, but trust us; it’s important to know what kind of things your employees like to do outside the office. Their hobbies may sound boring to you, but there’s a good case for why you should know this side of your candidates. Employees with hobbies tend to be happier, which leads to a 31% more productive workplace. Even better, these hobbies can reveal other skills that could be relevant in the workplace. Does one of your marketing candidates like to draw? That could be useful down the road when you need a graphic designer.
Companies like Apple, Amazon, and Netflix dominate today’s business headlines with stories of the next best tech gadget and indestructible business models, but more and more these companies are innovating the world of HR, too. If the topic isn’t about groundbreaking benefits like unlimited paid parental leave and on-site medical staff, it’s about the hiring processes that invite such talented candidates to their companies. A resume can give you a skill set, but the interview is the time for managers to dig deep for cultural fit.
The Apple Approach: Indirect Questions About Talent
1. “Tell me something that you have done in your life which you are particularly proud of.”
What’s unique about this talent review question is it gives candidates free rein to answer on any topic, whether it’s personal or professional. Managers can get a peek at what kind of work or activities fulfill this person and why and maybe even identify any potential talents.
2. “What was your best day in the last 4 years? What was your worst?”
This question dives into deep motivators from one end of the spectrum to the other. Depending on how a candidate answers, an interviewer may have the opportunity to dig more for some background on what it is that makes this person tick. Alternatively, it could just as well be a great opportunity to learn some personal details about the candidate.
3. “Tell me about something you failed at and what you learned from it.”
Asking candidates this question gives interviewers the chance to see what kind of struggles this person had to overcome and how they did it. If the candidate resorts to blaming others for their mistakes or making negative remarks about their previous employers, that’s likely a red flag for toxic behavior.
Take a look at the rest of the questions from Amazon and Netflix...
Managers don’t necessarily have a knack for management. In fact, a surprising amount of leaders in the workforce are placed in leadership positions without any formal training. When performance review time rolls around the corner, managers have to be prepared to lead this process effectively and confidently.
Don’t shy away from, or rush through employee reviews. Performance reviews are what you make them; they can be an amazing performance-enhancing, engagement, and productivity tool, or they simply can be the waste of time that 53% of surveyed employees believe them to be, citing that reviews do not motivate them to work harder. Make sure the latter isn’t true by asking these 14 questions that matter.
Creating a questionnaire for every candidate and employee you meet likely isn’t the best strategy but knowing what questions to ask and when is part of what separates the talent leaders from everyone else. What is your favorite question to ask employees?
As the head of a department in the midst of a sustained period of rapid growth, Sara has spent thousands of hours interviewing, hiring, onboarding and assessing employees and candidates. She is passionate about sharing the best practices she has learned from both successes and failures in talent acquisition and management.