Exceptional questions, informative answers
Attracting talented workers, obtaining applications from them, and recognizing capable employees is absolutely essential to building a company or team. But information on abilities and experiences as well as grades and testimonials alone do not say enough about the applicant. Will the personality and leadership style of the candidate complement the team productively? And is the applicant able to cope with the pace of the company and does he have entrepreneurial thinking?
The following six - at first glance rather unusual - questions for a job interview allow for honest and open communication with the candidate and help find the exact candidate for your job Company to find.
Question 1: “Let us assume that you will no longer work for us in the next six months. What do you think would be the reason? ”
With the answer to such a question, the applicant gives an insight into his principles and values. It becomes clear whether the candidate is interested in a long-term relationship with the company or whether he is a so-called “job-hopper” and the new position will only be a further step in the résumé. You can also see whether the applicant is quickly frustrated and is looking for new challenges if he cannot implement his own ideas.
Question 2: “Are you the heart and soul of our company?”
Outstanding candidates quickly establish relationships with different employees in different departments and work well in interdisciplinary, cross-departmental teams. They can act as a starting point for questions and problems and enjoy the trust of other employees. Especially for companies in growth phases, such employees are true rough diamonds as they build a real bond with the company.
Question 3: “What do you not like at all?”
Most applicants like to talk about what they can do well, to do and who they want to be. This question is, however, more difficult to answer. The focus is not on tasks or activities that the candidate does not control, but on the possibilities that he finds to do unloved tasks. How does he deal with high workload? In the dialogue you will find out how the applicant responds and challenges.
Question 4: "What was the hardest nut you cracked - or not cracked - in your professional life?"
This question builds on the previous one and the answer shows how the potential employee tries to deal with failures or solve complex problems. Also the deal with other employees becomes clear: Is the cooperation sought or problems are solved rather in the Alleingang? Discussions about batting are far more interesting and informative than the unwinding of successes and career goals.
Question 5: “What do you need from your boss or the team to be able to work really successfully?”
The answers to this question provide a whole lot of information about the applicant. How much self-confidence does the candidate have? How independent does he or she work, how much support or coaching is needed and how is success defined? In addition, the information can also be used to improve their own leadership qualities!
Question 6: "Tell me about your most frustrating work day in the past few months."
If an applicant is asked to answer the question first about the last employer or the boss or the team, this already shows much about the morality and the professionalism of the candidate.
This question can also reveal how well the candidate is committed despite disagreements. At Shutterstock, for example, we work on the principle of "disagree and commit" - a method of decision making. Many different ideas are collected here and considered until one of them is finally implemented. It is of course perfectly fine if an employee disagrees. Nevertheless, it is important to get involved in the jointly decided cause. Good applicants have entrepreneurial thinking and are motivated to implement the strategy that is then given for the benefit of the company.
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German edition: ISBN 9783965961401
English version: ISBN 9783965961418 (Translation notice)
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