Six Questions You Should Ask Every Job Candidate

Hiring people that seamlessly fit into the culture of your business is one of the most difficult tasks for any hiring manager. So how do you find the right person for your company?

shutterstock_144546764Thomas Koulopoulos, founder of the Delphi Group, says, “The key to hiring the best people is to look for foundational traits that speak to their sense of purpose, what drives them to achieve, how they deal with failure and success, how they think, and why they do what they do.” 

In the spirit of that answer, here are six useful interview questions you should ask every potential candidate to help identify their intrinsic motivation. The answers to these questions will help you get a better feel for the person you’re interviewing—and if they’re a good fit.

1. Are you driven by the determination to succeed or the fear of failure?

There’s no correct answer to this question. But by listening to how the person answers, you’ll gain insight into what really motivates them.

2. Why are you successful?

Part of being a successful person is reflecting on what you do and why. This question will help you determine if the candidate is good at self-evaluation.

3. If today were your last day on Earth, what would you most regret not having accomplished?

You want to hire someone that lives with focus and knows how to achieve goals. This question will help you understand a person’s creativity and resourcefulness.

4. How is who you are today consistent or inconsistent with the person you were at 12 years old? 

Understanding a person’s journey through adolescence to adulthood will give you a better look at the candidate’s personality and ability to change.

5. Name someone alive today, who I would know, that you consider exceptionally intelligent. How would you rank your intelligence against this person’s? 

This is a two-part question, so start with the first part before moving on to the second. The answer will help you understand how the person rates and measures intelligence, and also their self-worth.

6. When are you happiest?

This is a general question, so be sure to ask the candidate to provide specific examples. The key to this question is getting an answer you deem authentic, while seeing if the person’s definition of happiness is in line with the culture of your company.

These questions are all about helping you find the right person for the job. And by integrating these questions into your interview, you’ll gain a much better understanding of the candidate and what they can add to your organization. You’ll also get a good idea of whether or not the person will fit in with the rest of your staff. It’s all about finding the candidate who’s the right fit for the position—and by sticking to these questions, you will!

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