Young entrepreneurs often rely on their gut while making business decisions and while intuition can sometimes be an indicator of something being afoot, it certainly isn’t an appropriate criterion to rely on when hiring employees. Don’t let yourself get wrapped up in just the ‘culture fit’ – often, a candidate’s ability to click with you has no bearing on the professional skills he/she brings to the table. Instead of going ahead with casual interviews to gauge someone’s vibe, create structured interviews and evaluate each candidate on merit. Ultimately, this will ensure you build a strong team to grow your business.
Why does a structured interview work better than a casual one?
Relying on your instincts to judge candidates often means making snap judgements, which increases the potential of an ill-suited hire. With a structured interview, you can use the same set of standards to judge each candidate and successfully pick a suitable one from the bunch. Additionally, most candidates feel more comfortable during structured interview settings, and this is particularly true in the Indian scenario where many skilled professionals that do not have client-facing roles are often uncomfortable during social interactions. To prevent letting something like social discomfort cloud your opinion about a candidate’s suitability, you must rely on an interview that looks for more than just surface-level personality traits.
How to plan your interviews to improve your hiring?
For starters, you must prepare for the interview. A simple glance at a resume is hardly enough to help you conduct a structured interview. You must identify the skills required for the job role by speaking to someone who works in the same field.
Ask questions that show you how a candidate thinks
Once you’ve jotted down the key skills, build questions around them in a way that helps candidates demonstrate their skills. For instance, if you are looking for a team leader, a basic question like “tell me about the last time you quelled dissent in your team” works well because it allows them to talk about their work experience. Once you’ve got the initial answer, you must delve deeper to understand how their thought-process works by asking follow-up questions.
Create a grading rubric for a fair evaluation
Apart from crafting questions that help you understand how candidates think, you must also create a formal grading rubric, with clearly defined grading criteria. This will ensure that you get a well-rounded picture of the candidate’s professional abilities. Additionally, it will standardise the hiring process and ensure that no matter who is taking interviews on a specific day, the scope for unsuitable candidates being hired is always minimised.
Administer a test to identify one’s skill levels
Depending on the field you work in, you should ask your candidates to sit for a test or bring in their portfolios. Nothing is as clear an indicator of one’s professional skills than the work done in the past, so don’t discount this step.
Putting candidates at-ease
A job interview is stressful for most people and in order to get the most out of the experience, you must put your candidate at-ease. A simple act like offering a glass of water or asking if they need to use the restroom is more than enough to ensure they are ready for the interview.