Ask These Questions to Find the Best Candidate

You may have heard that many recruiters and hiring managers have started asking applicants unusual questions in the interview, and thought, that’s just not for me.

However, candidates study for all the standard questions and often walk into an interview expecting to recite their lines. Rather than holding recitals, asking unconventional questions compels applicants to think on their feet and hopefully reveal something about themselves as a professional in the process.

In addition, many interviewers are finding success with ‘behavioral questions’. These are open-ended questions that ask an applicant how he or she might react in a certain hypothetical situation or how they handled a certain situation from their past. The point of asking these questions is to determine how the person might respond to a critical situation as an employee at your company.

Both odd and behavioral interview questions can have significant value if asked right. Below are a few examples of these kinds of questions and the types of answers you might be looking for from an ideal applicant.

Strange questions

“If you were an animal, what kind of animal would you be?”

There are several variations of this question that you could ask, and the point of asking these ‘what kind of’ questions is to see if and how far someone thinks outside the box. So, if you are looking for someone who needs to come up with unconventional solutions on the fly, ideal candidates should give an unconventional response.

“What three items would take with you to a desert island?”

Open-ended questions like these are designed to get a sense of applicants’ thought process and problem solving abilities. While there’s no real right answer to these questions, ideal candidates should have a good reasoning behind the choices they make.

“If we allowed you to throw a party in the office, what would you do?”

Giving candidates a random, hypothetical and lighthearted task is great way to get a sense of their creativity, sensibility and attention to detail. A good candidate should be able to get into some specifics with their answer.

Behavioral questions

“What was your last failure and how did you handle it?”

Every applicant should be able to give you an example of a past failure. If they can’t it means they probably didn’t prepare well enough, or can’t admit when they made a mistake – both red flags.

Ideally, the example a candidate give you shouldn’t be too closely related to the job requirements. Also, the example should end with the candidate saying what they learned through the experience.

“Talk about the last time you made a tough decision.”

The best candidates should seem self-confident and able to make major decisions, even if they know that decision will be unpopular. Good solutions to questions about handling tough situations should be upbeat and specific, describing what was done, how it was done and how the challenging decision paid off.

At Labor Temps, we help our clients’ companies sourcing the best-fit talent for their open positions. If your organization is currently in the market for a staffing solution, please contact us today.