Raise your hand if you’ve been here before…
A manager has a scheduled Zoom interview that afternoon. They have had a busy day and didn’t take the time to prep. The manager scans the resume 5 minutes before logging on.
The phone rings two minutes before the interview is to start. They’ve been waiting for this person to call and decide to answer, anticipating it will only take “just a minute.”
The phone call drags on and now the manager is now 6 minutes late to the interview. They start off with “I’m so sorry, I had to take a call…” And the tone is set. The manager might as well have said, “I had someone more important than you need my time and attention, and I gave it to them instead.” The tone of the interview feels rushed and awkward.
Because the manager is not prepared and needing to buy some time, they go for the worst opening question ever, “Tell me about yourself.”
The applicant responds to the opening question for 20 minutes – rambling about their job history, their education and origin of their family. Anything to try to grasp at a comprehensive answer that will “wow” the manager.
Then the manager, who is completely unprepared for what to do next says, “Do you have any questions for me?”
The interview is wrapped up in 25 minutes tops.
The manager offers the applicant the position, “They seemed nice.”
The new hire is terminated after 30 days. “Not a good match” the manager says.
“Why do we even bother with an interview? Applicants will say anything in an interview just to get hired.”
This last statement is not true. You absolutely can know who you are hiring. You just need to follow the 3 P’s –
Plan – Create a process in advance that aligns with your core values and work culture. Develop interview questions that obtain the information you need to know to determine if an applicant is the best match for the job and the company.
Prepare – Block out the appropriate amount of time before the interview so that you can review the resume at least 60 minutes prior to the start time without distractions. Then, log-in at least 5 minutes before so you’re on time and can address any technology issues prior to the start. On time is late.
Present – You are representing yourself and the company. On-time, ready to go, excited to meet the applicant. You may be the one leading the interview, but candidates are evaluating you, too. Present yourself in the best light possible.
Stop wasting time with horror story-like interviews. Just like with all functions of leadership, the focus of recruiting and interviewing candidates needs to be about the people.