Everyone thinks they are a good interviewer. Conducting an interview takes skill and savvy. In order to hire the right person, you have to ask the right questions. You also have to share enough information to make sure that person is the perfect match.
Contrary to popular belief, the applicant isn’t the only person that is being evaluated. Most interviewers think an interview is a one way street. They are so focused on getting their questions answered, they don’t pay attention to the questions they are being asked.
A good interviewer knows what they’re looking for before the interview starts. A good interviewer has also done their homework prior to the interview. You should never conduct an interview without having read the applicant’s resume. Your lack of preparation is a reflection of you and/or your company.
Applicants are just as interested in a good cultural fit as employers are. During the interview provide information about the environment they will be working in. Is your office a close knit family, the Hatfields and McCoys, or somewhere in between? You don’t want to share too much information that you scare them away. However, the applicant has to have enough information so they can make an informed decision. It takes skill and savvy to walk this tightrope.
While writing this blog post, I had an impromptu conversation with a manager. The company he works for is being sold. In the midst of this process, he is conducting interviews for several positions. I asked him, “Would you tell applicants that the company is being sold?”
He said, generally, he would not share company information with an applicant, he would consider sharing the information if the applicant is unemployed. He does not want someone that is unemployed to take the job and possibly be unemployed again in the near future.
Conducting an interview takes skill and savvy. If you want to hire the right person, you have to walk the tightrope between adequate disclosure without sharing too much information. Be as transparent as possible during the interview because honesty really is the best policy.
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