As agribusiness employers, we typically have high expectations for the candidates we interview. Arrive on time, come prepared with questions, and conduct yourself professionally. This includes dress. While interviewees are held to high standards, does the hiring manager in your organization hold him or herself to those same standards of professionalism, including appearance? How an interviewer dresses can tell the candidate a lot about the organization and its culture. Here are some tips for conveying this truthfully but still making known that you also came prepared and are taking this interview seriously.
Why does it matter, you ask? You might feel like you’ve got the upper hand here–that your candidates want to work for YOU, after all. THEY are the ones needing to make an impression. But in this job seekers’ market, your impression matters just as much. A candidate will judge on your appearance. It will reveal to them whether or not you take your role seriously, your workplace culture, your expectations for your employees, whether or not your in-person brand matches your online presence, and whether or not the workplace environment is friendly and comfortable. With all that being said, dress in such a way that your candidate could conclude favorably that your organization is the place they would like to work for.
Interviewing candidates for an open role is no easy task. Rejecting a candidate that you have interviewed is even more challenging and something most employers dread. Sending a post-interview rejection email is necessary, but have you ever had a candidate respond wanting feedback from their interview? This can be a tricky situation and some employers are left unsure of how to respond next. When giving interview feedback, not only do you risk upsetting the candidate but you can put your company at a legal risk as well. There are ways to give feedback and keep your reputation without hurting feelings or putting your company at any risk.
Just because the candidate was not right for a certain position does not mean they won’t be right for another position elsewhere. Starting off with the positive attributes from the interview will ease the candidates mind when you move on to more constructive and helpful criticisms. Even though they were rejected for the position, being positive boosts the candidate experience with your company.
A lunch interview is a common portion of the interview process. Often, a lunch interview is an opportunity to have a more casual conversation with a candidate over a meal while still getting to know them as a person and as a professional. Many employers even opt to do to the entire interview over lunch instead of in an office setting. Like all interviewing methods, a lunch interview has unique advantages. Check out this list of reasons to do a lunch interview.
It presents an opportunity to meet with a candidate on a more personal level.
Formal in-office interviews are typically more tense situations for candidates. A lunch interview, while it should still be taken as a formal interview, also invites the candidate to relax a bit more and be themselves. While they should still show a certain amount of nervousness, as it shows they are taking this seriously, it allows for more openness and casual conversation over a meal. Once the questions do start rolling, the candidate has been given an opportunity to ease into getting to know the interviewers as well. This type of interview also serves as a great indicator of emotional intelligence. How easily is conversation flowing? Do you feel like connections are being made? Are they able to laugh a little?
Ever notice a candidate seemingly fine when they enter the interview and then as the interview goes on, they seem less comfortable? Sure, it could be nerves, but have you ever considered that your interview process could be scaring them off? You might think that you’ve got the easy job as the interviewer. All you have to do is ask the questions and evaluate, after all. But these five common interview process faux pas could be leaving top-notch candidates itching for the exit.
Lack of Preparation
Everyone’s busy, but you need to set aside time to prepare for an interview. Make sure you know about the position you’re interviewing for, backwards and forwards, and can answer any questions the candidate may have about the job. Have your questions researched and ready to go so you can adequately interview for the job at hand. Research your candidates’ resumes and applications so that you can form additional questions or comments around their past experiences and how they’ll relate to the position. If you go into an interview unprepared and unknowledgeable, the candidate will see you the same as you would see an unprepared candidate: not interested.
I think almost everyone can recount some unexpected interview questions that caught them off guard and became the most memorable part of a job interview. You know, those non-traditional questions like “If you could be doing anything, what would you do?”, or “If you could have any super power, what would it be?” Truth be told, these types of unique, thought-provoking questions often lead to the pivotal point in a job interview where even the most prepared, well-rehearsed candidates drop their guard and begin to reveal more about themselves than they may have anticipated.
Interviewing strategically using some unexpected interview questions can help the hiring manager dig deeper to find the best candidate for the job. These types of questions break the rhythm of the interview and allow unique qualities to be revealed. Such traits could be essential to the position, such as interpersonal skills, management style, integrity, and the ability to work with others.
After polling co-workers and industry peers, I have come up with a list of ten unexpected interview questions that tend to reveal the true candidate:
Before making a hiring decision for your operation you want to make sure that the candidate you hire is a good fit. An interview is intended to help you make an informed decision about which candidate matches the skills, knowledge and motivation of the position. Making the right hire reduces your cost per hire, improves your employee turnover rate, as well as improves your staff quality and work environment.
An essential part of interview preparation is formalizing a list of questions for use during the interview. As you think about the questions you typically ask prospective employees, consider the effectiveness of each question. Most questions should center on job knowledge and if the employee will be a fit for your operation (likes and dislikes). Avoiding questions that can be quickly answered yes or no, can help maximize the amount of information you collect from a candidate. It is also important not to lead the candidate into responding a certain way with phrasing. Example: You are a hard worker aren’t you? Interview questions should help you learn more about the candidate without being overly forceful or intimidating. Avoid questions or using a tone that is accusing or could make a candidate fill interrogated or uncomfortable.