The Job Interview: 4 Practices That Should Be Eliminated Immediately
Sometimes, I feel bad for people who are searching for employment these days. Lately, when I talk to clients that are seeking employment, they have nothing but horror stories—especially when it comes to interviewing. Traditionally, interviews seem more like a performance as opposed to an actual conversation between two parties that could potentially benefit each other. Companies don’t want to make hiring mistakes that cost them tons of money. However, some of the practices that are currently in place doesn’t seem to prevent mistakes from occurring. Here are 4 things I wish were eliminated from job interviews immediately.
Interviews should be a time for companies to inform potential employees about the great things they have to offer. It is also the time to explore whether candidates would be a good fit for their organization. However, the interviewing process is a two way street. Potential employees should have the opportunity to see if they would be excited to work with the company as well. The problem occurs when the interviewer wants you to sit for what seems like an interrogation as opposed to a conversation. They say things like, “We’re going to ask you a series of questions, once we are done with all our questions you will have a chance to ask your own”. This can turn into a 30 to 40 minute grilling session, where they ask questions with the intent of disqualifying you for employment (while never getting to know much about you). Once you are done answering questions, you may not even have the energy to ask any of your own. Sometimes, people leave interviews feeling as though they have committed a crime, as opposed to learning about the company and how you can help each other.
“What’s your biggest weakness?’ “If you were a fruit what kind of fruit would you be”? Although interesting, these kinds of questions doesn’t actually help to gain insight into how a person can help a company. Most people have learned to prepare for interview questions, and will answer them accordingly. When you ask boring overused questions, more than likely you will get a boring rehearsed answer that you have heard before. A seasoned interviewer will not reveal that they have a bad temper and don’t like working with the public. What does a question about fruit have to do with the job and how a person will perform? There should be questions that allow people to get to know each other. Questions such as “What are your hobbies?”, “What do you love most about this particular field?”, or “What is your approach to your craft?” are better suited for really getting to know a little more about someone. If interviewers asked real questions with the intent of actually getting to know people instead of disqualifying them, interviews would be more effective for both parties.
Already Have A Chosen Candidate:
The interviewer may not tell you they already have someone in mind for the position, but you can tell by the questions they ask and the amount of time they spend with you. I have heard clients say they were only asked 2 or 3 questions during an interview, the interviewer appeared very disinterested even before the interview started, or they seemed to be conducting the interview as a formality. Sometimes Hiring Managers will actually tell you they have several internal candidates vying for the position. It’s no surprise when you get an email the next day saying they hired an internal candidate. Why waste people’s time? Just hire the person you have in mind.
No Info About The Company
I have personally been on interviews where the company representative never gives information about the company. I’ve had to ask them about the company and it seems as though they were embarrassed that I had to ask first. This information is very important for an interview, especially since the company should be marketing themselves to you as well. An organization should be proud to tell you the great things about them.
As you can tell, I hate the way interviews are currently conducted. They really have become performances instead of conversations. For a process that sole purpose is to get to know someone better, it fails miserably in doing that. Interviews today are impersonal, performance based (on response and not skilled), and actually a bit shallow. Many times candidate’s walk away knowing nothing more about the company than when they arrived and based on silly factors companies allow excellent workers to walk out their doors. There has got to be a better way.
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