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Milton Hall, MBA President and CEO Human Capital Consultants, LLC. Advancing Your Career. Interviewing Techniques. May 12, 2007. Coverage Points. The Interview Process Tips For Candidates: Selling Yourself in the Interview Communicating Your Skills

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milton hall mba president and ceo human capital consultants llc
Milton Hall, MBA

President and CEO

Human Capital Consultants, LLC

Advancing Your Career

Interviewing Techniques

May 12, 2007

coverage points
Coverage Points
  • The Interview Process
  • Tips For Candidates:
      • Selling Yourself in the Interview
      • Communicating Your Skills
      • Assessing the Skill of the Interviewer
  • Tip For Managers:
      • Determining Candidates’ Skills Sets
      • Assessing the Candidates’ Integrity
      • “Telling” Interview Questions
the interview candidate s perspective
The Interview – Candidate’s Perspective
  • An Opportunity to Learn More About:
    • The Company / Department
    • The Goals, Vision, Major “Recent” Achievements
    • The Job
    • The Roles and Responsibilities
    • The Inter-Relationship Between the Job and Goals
    • Why is the Job Vacant
    • How Many People Were in the Job Prior
    • The Reporting Relationships
the interview company s perspective
The Interview –Company’s Perspective
  • An Opportunity to Learn More:
    • About the “Person” Candidate
      • Personality Assessment (Myers-Briggs)
      • Work Ethic
      • Are they “Well-Rounded”, “Well Spoken”
      • Unpackage Their Past Experience
      • Review Past Career Successes
      • Assess Directionally Where they are going
      • Envisioning them in the Assignment & How they Might Perform
interview process
Interview Process

An exercise where candidates and potential employers meet to

determine if the right competencies, chemistry and commonality

exist in order to enter into a relationship.


Sense of Connection


Shared Vision

Team Spirit


Special Skills

Recognized Abilities

Employment Fit

interview process6
Interview Process
  • Steps During the Interview Process



Perceived Value

Renewal of Initially

Identified Competencies

















interview styles
Interview Styles
  • Unstructured
  • No Pre-Planned Questions
  • Candidate Sets the Pace
  • Difficult to Compare Candidates Due to Lack of Consistency in Questioning
  • Paneled
  • Multiple Interviewers Simultaneously
  • Structured or Unstructured
  • Yields More Immediate Decision
  • Best in Cross-Functional Work-Spaced
  • Structured
  • Pre-Planned Agenda
  • Consistent Line of Questioning
  • Same Questions – All Candidates
  • Questions Derived from Job Requirements

Typical in Gov’t

Source: Society for Human Resource Mgmt. Employment Practices Committee, May 2002

interview type most common
Interview Type – Most Common

Behavioral - "A thorough, planned, systematic way

to gather and evaluate information about what

candidates have done in the past to show how they

would handle future situations."

        • Professor Herbert Heneman, III University of Wisconsin-Madison
  • The technique of Behavioral Interviewing was created by Development Dimensions International in the 1970’s
behavioral interviews
Behavioral Interviews
  • Seek to draw out behaviors demonstrated by a candidate when questions are framed by an interviewer in a way that requires them to recount their handling of a problem or task.
  • The hiring authority determines which specific behaviors are necessary for success on the job and then seeks out candidates that have shown that they are capable of exhibiting those behaviors.


interview preparation
Interview Preparation
  • Read Job Description Carefully
  • Determine Early on if Applying is for….
      • Passion
      • Paycheck
  • Prepare a “Typo-Free” Resume / CV
  • Learn as Much as Possible about the Company / Dept
  • Dress Appropriately
  • Eat Lite before the Interview (Avoid Growling Stomach)
  • Get Directions to the Interview Address
  • Show up 5-10 Minutes Early
  • Bring a Notepad & (2) Pens
  • Practice the Pronunciation of the Interviewers Name
  • Remind yourself to speak at a moderate pace
selling yourself
Selling Yourself
  • Preparation Impresses Hiring Managers:
    • Obtain information about the job description, application process, salary, benefits, etc
    • Read up on the company (or Dept if internal), its history, the industry, the company’s competition, and the employer, especially the interviewer, if possible
    • Bring a couple copies of your resume and a portfolio of your work if appropriate
    • Offer responses to the interviewer before s/he asks

Source: Preparing for Those Common Job Interview Questions. Battaglia, E. LifeScript Staff Writer. 2006, Jan 5

selling yourself13
Selling Yourself
  • Be On-Time (1st Impressions – Lasting Impressions)
  • Dress Appropriate to the Position, Dept or Culture
  • Take Notes – Evidences Genuine Interest
  • Bring Prepared Questions / Ask Non-Complex Questions
  • Listen Carefully (Avoid Asking Questions Already Answered)
  • Restate Your Understanding of the Assignment
  • Convey How you Would Handle Certain Tasks
  • Offer Experiences of “Specific” Projects You’ve Lead
selling yourself14
Selling Yourself

Top Ten Strikeouts that most often CONDEMN Job Candidates

  • Doesn’t ask questions 
  • Condemnation of past employer 
  • Inability to take criticism 
  • Poor personal appearance
  • Indecisive, cynical, lazy
  • Overbearing, over aggressive, “know it all” 
  • Late for the interview 
  • Failure to look at interviewer while interviewing
  • Unable to express self clearly
  • Overemphasis on money

Source: Kador, J. Author: 201 Best Questions to Ask Your Interviewer.

selling yourself15
Selling Yourself

5 “Engaging” Questions for Your Interviewer

  • What does this company value the most and how do you think my work for you will further these values? 
  • What’s the most important thing I can do to help within the first 90 days of my employment? 
  • Do you have any questions or concerns about my ability to perform this job? 
  • What kinds of processes are in place to help me work collaboratively?
  • Do you have any concerns that I need to clear up in order to be the top candidate? 

Source: Kador, J. Author: 201 Best Questions to Ask Your Interviewer.

opening up the candidate
Opening up the Candidate
  • Put the applicant at ease at the beginning of the interview. Break-the-ice with Social Chatter (e.g. Driving Distance, Parking Challenge, What Building are you In?)
  • Frame an Introduction of the Department, the history, the successes and other relevant points.
  • Ask the Candidate for an Introduction of themselves
  • Ask Open-ended questions that will facilitate discussion. Avoid questions that require a yes or no answer.
  • If candidate freezes on a particular question, go to the next one. It takes time for some applicants to relax and feel comfortable with the interviewing process.
  • Be sure to ask only job-related questions. Review Title VII of the Civil Right Acts
  • Prepare to Listen More and Talk Less. When Positioned Properly, Candidates will Tell their Life-Story and some….

Source: SHRM Information Center

for managers determining candidates skills sets
For Managers: Determining Candidates’ Skills Sets

Two Types of Candidates

  • Processes
    • Thrives on Routine
    • Requires Certainty
    • Methodical
    • Tends to be Absolute
    • Requires Specific Direction
    • Melt-Down on Impromptu Projects
  • Innovator
    • Creative Thinker
    • Rebels in Structure
    • Solicits Input w/Ease
    • Delegates Often
    • Free-Spirited
for managers asking the right questions
For Managers: Asking the Right Questions
  • The guiding principle behind any question to an applicant is, can the employer demonstrate a job-related necessity for asking the question?
  • An applicant should only be asked questions that are job related.
  • The interviewer should ask himself/herself if this information is really needed in order to judge the applicant's qualifications, level of skills and overall competence for the job.
  • Problem areas are discriminatory questions that are posed on the basis of the applicant's gender, race, age, national origin, religion, or other non-job-related basis.
    • i.e. What age were you when you graduated from college?
    • i.e. What country were you born in?
    • i.e. How many work days did you loose due to daycare challenges?


for managers asking the right questions20
For Managers: Asking the Right Questions


for managers telling interviewer questions
For Managers: “Telling” Interviewer Questions
  • What’s a Bad Day Like For You?
  • Walk Me Through the Last One You Experienced?
  • Name Your Top Three Areas of Growth?
  • Based on What You Know About this Job, What Exactly Will Contribute to Help us Achieve our Goals?
for managers sample interview er questions
For Managers: Sample Interviewer Questions
  • Diversity Focused:
    • What kinds of experiences have you had working with others with different backgrounds than your own?
    • Tell me about a time you had to alter your work style to meet a diversity need or challenge?
  • Time Management Focused:
    • Tell me about your productivity and time management skills?
    • How do you determine what amount of time is reasonable for a task?

Source: SHRM On-Line. Sample Interviewer Database

for managers sample interview er questions23
For Managers: Sample Interviewer Questions
  • Teamwork Focused:
    • When groups work together, conflict often erupts.  Tell me about a time that conflict occurred in one of your work groups and how you handled it?
    • Tell me about the most effective contribution you have made as part of a task group or special project team.
  • Integrity Focused:
    • In what business situations do you feel honesty is inappropriate? 
    • If you saw a coworker doing something dishonest, and by alerting management, it could affect your position, what would you do? 

Source: SHRM On-Line. Sample Interviewer Database