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How to Ask Better Interview Questions

  • Publish Date: Posted over 1 year ago
  • Author: Taylor Varco

Getting the full picture of a person's workmanship and personality may feel like a lot of pressure for one interview. But it's possible to learn a substantial amount in one sitdown. Learn about what kinds of questions to ask that will reveal the most about each candidate. 

When you sit down for an interview, you want to find the right balance that won't make the interviewee squirm and choke but will also challenge them to answer tough questions in an authentic manner. For example, asking an industry-specific skill question can cause the potential employee to freeze under pressure. But watch how they handle the stress and pivot to showing a part of them that may not otherwise be revealed. 

Examples of Informative Interview Questions

A successful interview will be a mix of lighthearted and challenging questions. Instead of asking broad, open-ended questions, consider more specific questions that will get the interviewee talking. 

Learn About Their Passions Outside of Work

You may think fluff questions like, what do you like to do for fun, are frivolous and not informative. But when you get more candid in your wording, you may elicit thoughtful insights into their personality. Here are a few questions: 

  • What makes you excited to get out of bed in the morning? 

  • Tell me about your most recent experience with friendly competition. 

  • Do you have a hobby you have improved upon, and will you tell me about it? 

When you listen to the answers, you may find out about the candidate's passions, what motivates them, and how they handle competition. You'll also see how they light up when discussing aspects of their personal talents. Finally, you'll see their self-management skills in improving all areas of their life to imagine how that would translate well into work life. 

Challenge Them with Top-Level Skill Questions

Implement a few zingers into the interview that will challenge the person's resume and past work experience. Sometimes, you may even get a response that reveals they do not know the answer. Do they handle that humbly and ask for help, or do they pretend to know the answer? The way they respond can reveal a lot more than actually knowing the answer to the question. 

Give Them an Opportunity to Admit Defeat

No one likes to look bad in an interview, but it's always a good idea to ask about conflict resolution and how they handle failure. You can give the interviewee a heads up and circle back to the question if they need a minute to get their footing. Here are some examples: 

  • Describe a time that you received negative feedback and what you did next. 

  • Have you ever worked with a supervisor who solely used negative feedback to motivate the team, and how did that go? 

  • Tell me about when you were unprepared for a deadline and how you navigated it. 

These questions can be vital in learning if the potential employee knows how to advocate for themselves, improve upon past mistakes, and be honest in real time about learning experiences. 

Maximize your interview time by asking questions that matter. Next time you sit down for an interview, understand that you have the chance to learn about what type of employee you have in front of you. Contact the Per Se Group now to learn more about hiring top-quality employees and retaining them.