Employers Interviewing Tips

The Candidate

Since each individual-and each interview-is different, these points should serve only as basic guidelines, not as inflexible rules.

Meeting the Candidate…

At the outset, act friendly but avoid prolonged small talk – interviewing time costs money

* Introduce yourself by using your name and title.

* Mention casually that you will make notes. (You don’t mind if I make notes, do you?)

* Assure candidate that all information will be treated in confidence.


* Ask questions in a conversational tone. Make them concise and clear.

* Avoid loaded and negative questions which will force complete answers: “Why do you say that?” (who, what, when, where and how?)

* Don’t ask direct questions that can be answered “Yes” or “No.”

The Interview…

You will find two columns of questions. The left hand column contains questions to ask yourself about the candidate. The right hand column suggests questions to ask the candidate. During the interview it is suggested you continually ask yourself “what is this person telling me about himself/herself? What kind of person is he/she?” In other parts of the interview you can cover education, previous experience and other matters relating to specific qualifications.


* Attempt to determine the candidate’s goals.

* Try to draw the candidate out and allow him/her to talk.

* Don’t sell-interview.

* Try to avoid snap judgements.

I. Attitude
Ask Yourself Ask the Candidate
1. Can compete without irritation? Ever lose in competition? Feelings?
2. Can bounce back easily? Ever uncertain about proving for your family?
3. Can balance interest of both company and self? How can American way of business be improved?
4. What are life priorities? Do you feel you’ve made a success of life to date?
5. Is there loyalty level? Who was your best boss? Describe the person.
6. Takes pride in doing a good job? What duties did you like most in your last job? Least?
7. Indications of cooperativeness – a team player? How do you feel about working with other employees?
II. Motivation
1. Is settled in choice of work? What ambitions does your spouse (or others) have for you?
2. Works from choice, or necessity? What have you done on your own to prepare for a better job?
3. Makes day-to-day and long-range plans? What mortgages, debts,etc., press you now?
4. Uses some leisure for self-improvement? How will this job help you get what you want?
5. Is willing to work for what he/she wants in face of opposition? What obstacles are most likely to trip you up?
III. Intiative
1. Is he/she a self-starter? How did you get into this line of work?
2. Completes own tasks? Do you prefer to work alone or with others?
3. Follows through on assigned tasks? What do you like and dislike about your kind of work?
4. Works in assigned manner without leaving own “trademark”? Which supervisors let you work alone? How did you feel about this?
5. Can work independently? When have you felt like giving up on a task? Tell me about it.
IV. Stability
1. Is this person excitable or even-tempered? What things disturb you most?
2. Impatient or understanding? How do you get along with people you dislike?
3. Does he/she show likes and dislikes freely? What children’s actions irritate you?
4. Does candidate use words that show strong feelings? What were your most unpleasant work experiences?
5. Is candidate poised or impulsive; controlled or erratic? Most pleasant work experiences?
6. Will this person broaden or flatten under pressure? What do you most admire in others?
7. Is candidate enthusiastic about job? What things do some people do that are irritating to other people?
V. Planning
1. Ability to plan and follow through? Or will he/she depend on a supervisor for planning? What part of your work do you like best? Like least?
2. Ability to coordinate work of others? What part is the most difficult for you?
3. Ability to fit into company methods? Give me an idea how you spend a typical day?
4. Ability to think of ways of improving methods? Where do you want to be five years from now?
5. Will he/she see the whole job or get caught up in details?
   What are the differences between planned and unplanned work?
If you were manager, how would you run the present job?
1. Realistic in appraising self? Tell me about your strengths/your weaknesses.
2. Desire for self improvement? Are your weaknesses important enough to do something about them? Why or why not?
3. Interested in problems of others? How do you feel about these weaknesses?
4. Interested in reaction of others to self? How would you size up your last employer?
5. Will this person take constructive action on weaknesses? Most useful criticism received? From whom? Tell me about it. Most useless?
6. How does he/she take criticism? How do you handle fault finders?
VII. Social Skills
1. Is this person a leader or follower? What do you like to do in your spare time?
2. Interested in new ways of dealing with people? Have you ever organized a group? Tell me about it.
3. Can get along best with what types of people? What methods are effective in dealing with people? What methods are ineffective?
4. Will wear well over the long term? What kind of people do you get along with best?
5. Can make friends easily? Do you prefer making new friends or keeping old one? Why?
How would you go about making friends?
What must a person do to be liked by others?
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