Sort Through Candidates with These Uncommon Interview Questions

Top questions to ask during an interview.You’ve sorted through resumes, completed phone screens, and narrowed down the pool to just a few potential candidates.   With qualifications so similar, you know it’s going to be hard to choose which candidate is the best, and making the right hiring decision is crucial.  How will you decide?  The trick is in asking unconventional interview questions that a candidate didn’t rehearse for—questions that reveal a candidate’s personality.  Here are five uncommon interview questions that will help you make a better hiring decision.

  1. If you were hired, what would you accomplish in the first hour you were on the job?
    This question puts the candidate on the spot and gives you insight into how they prioritize in a limited time frame.  Of their personal, social, and career goals, what takes precedence during their first day?  What do they feel is most important to set them up for success with the company?
  1. What’s your favorite band and how would you convince someone who hated their genre of music to listen to them?
    While a person’s favorite music says a lot about them, that’s not the most important revelation you’ll get out of this answer.   This question reveals how well the candidate can construct a compelling argument.  Can they strategize based on the known dislikes of the other person?  Are they able to make a case to defend their opinion?  These skills are vital in many negotiation aspects of business.
  1. How would you teach a 4 year old to tie a shoe?
    This question tests how logically and systematically a candidate can explain a mundane task to someone that doesn’t possess the same knowledge as they do.  Are they able to de-familiarize themselves and see things from another person’s point of view?  Are they a clear communicator?  How do they handle a situation where someone doesn’t understand what they’re explaining?  Being a clear communicator is a key to success as an employee.
  1. What were you doing the last time you looked at the clock and realized you had lost track of time?
    Our best work is often done when we enjoy what we’re doing and it doesn’t feel like work.  An exceptional candidate will be able to describe a time when they experienced this “flow”.  Experiencing “flow” shows ability to passionately commit to work.  These times of high creativity and high productivity are often when the best ideas come in business. 
  1. What concerns do you have about our company?
    No company is perfect for any employee.  Every company has potential downsides and challenges.  If a candidate has not done their research, this question will make them feel uncomfortable.  However, a great candidate has done their research and doesn’t think your company is perfect.  They’ve seen the reviews on Glassdoor and know what issues previous employees have expressed. However, their reasons for wanting to work for your company, and grow and achieve with you, have outweighed the negatives.  But as a knowledgeable candidate, they aren’t afraid to share their concerns because they want to work for a company that values honesty and transparency. 

Though asking these questions may seem uncomfortable at first, they’ll give you a much better idea of a candidate’s personality and whether they’re the right fit for your company.  If you’re having trouble finding the right employees for your organization, let the experienced recruiters at Area Temps give you access to the top talent in Cleveland.  Whether you’re looking to fulfill temporary or permanent positions, contact us today to see how we can help.

Leave a Reply

  • (will not be published)