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interview questions

10 essential interview questions and how they help you in smart analysis

Imagine you’re interviewing a potential candidate for a job. You’ve narrowed the field to a few candidates, and you’re now in the process of asking questions to assess their skills and qualifications. You might be wondering what questions I should ask. You need to know what questions will give you the best answers – this is where our blog comes in! We’ve compiled a list of the ten most common interview questions and explained how each helps you conduct an intelligent analysis of the candidate. Armed with this knowledge, you’ll be ready to tackle any interview easily!

You can also read our blog listing questions that help you detect top behaviors in team members.

What are the objectives of a job interview?

The objectives of a job interview are many and varied. They can include assessing the skills and qualifications of the potential employee, getting to know them better, determining if they would be a good fit for the position, exploring whether or not they will commit to the job offer, and working out any kinks in their candidacy.

The goal of any interview is to determine if the potential employee would be a good fit for the position, whether they have what it takes and whether they will commit to working with the company. The basic interviewing principles include getting to know the potential employee, assessing their qualifications and skills, understanding how they would fit into the company culture, and figuring out if they are an excellent cultural fit.

How do you analyze someone’s qualifications through interview questions?

The source of information for facts and figures in the question is the job interviewer’s job description. Investigating the level of certification or education a candidate has obtained is essential in understanding their skills and knowledge. If they have acquired any specific licenses or certificates, inquire about them. Asking interview questions about prior experience provides insight into how they would handle new tasks and situations during their workday.

The interviewer must also look for evidence of innovation and creativity in solving problems related to the applied position. In addition, verifying if the degree-holder researched topics before presenting them can tell you whether they were truly book smart rather than just attending class on time.

Top 10 most common interview questions to ask

We have prepared a handy list of interview questions you can use to know your candidate better when you interview the next time.

What’s your plan for the next few years?

A simple and open-ended question gives your candidate the scope to express themselves. Simply, this question gives you an insight into their plans. This helps you see whether they see a future with your team or are merely using it as a stopgap until they find the next thing to do. Moreover, you will also know if they are the sort of person who sets goals and works toward them or randomly takes action. This is important to analyze when you are hiring for your team, and you will want people who work systematically.

When hiring a candidate, you are looking for someone who can stay with you for a long time. This is because the costs of repeated recruitment and training cycles will be enormous for the organization to bear. Therefore, you should look for people whose plans for personal career growth align with your company’s projected trajectory. It will help you create organizational continuity and culture and save on costs.

Why are you applying for this role?

This question will help you understand the candidate’s expectations from your team. They will talk about what they believe they can gain from being a part of your team regarding growth and learning opportunities. Moreover, it will reveal how well they have researched your organization and projects before applying.

A person who has taken the time to study and understand what the job entails is more likely to be committed to it than someone who applied without knowing the responsibilities. Further, they are more likely to be a better fit and efficiently train for the role. Their motivation in seeking that role will help you understand their goals so that you can set a learning journey for them when they join your team.

Are you a team player or an individual player?

The correctness of the answer to this question depends on the role that you are hiring for. While some functions may work significantly with a person who prefers working individually, others might have teamwork as an indispensable quality for success. Therefore, you should remember the context while looking through the answer.

This question is essential when hiring and recruiting for your team because you will often want to have a candidate open to collaboration and working with a multitude of people. A person who loves to work individually may not be the right candidate even when they appear to be a great fit otherwise. However, at times you might be looking for a person who is adaptable to contingencies and can work both alone and with a team.

What has been your previous role in teams?

The answer to this question will tell you their previous team manager or leader’s opinion toward them. You can ascertain their perception of your candidate from the responsibilities and roles they got and did not get previously. A different manager’s opinion of the candidate can help form your opinion.

You will be able to see if they can fill the gap in your team, or will they be a misfit? Suppose your team needs a troubleshooter, someone people can reach out to in the situation of need. You will look for someone who has previously been in this role instead of someone who was more into a supervisory function.

How do your colleagues describe you?

Some roles might be team-oriented, and others might not. Until you ask this question, it is difficult to know if the candidate will mesh well with your team or if they will cause disruptions. The answer can give you a sense of their personality type, how well they will fit in with others on the team and what kind of interactions or conflicts they may cause.

The interviewer wants to get a feel for who this person is – from an external perspective as well as an internal one. While answering this question, the candidate will tell you how they assume others view them. Generally, they will tell you how they want to be seen by others. This helps you picture what values and qualities are admired by them. It allows them to decide if they wish to invest time into working with that person and gives you information about their potential as an employee.

What is your motivation to show up every day?

This question allows them to get specific about why this person wants a particular position and also gets an understanding of their work ethic. If you are not convinced by what they have said so far, it may be because the motivations given are not aligned with what you are looking for. While monetary incentive is there, you do not merely want someone who shows up every day for the paycheck. Instead, you will look for someone who is excited about the job and wants to do more in the field.

This information can give you some insight into if this person will be ready to put in the extra effort or if they will take shortcuts and lead to lower productivity. Any new hires must fit well with your company’s culture and values for everyone on staff to feel invested and valued.

What are your weaknesses?

The information about a candidate’s struggles and failures provides considerable insight. First, they show how resilient candidates are when faced with defeats. Are they likely to rise against a challenge or be aghast by its enormity? It shows how they view negative situations. Secondly, an understanding of the weaknesses that they hold themselves to is demonstrative of their level of self-awareness, which is an essential quality to have.

This question allows them to be candid about what needs improvement so that both parties can work together on a solution. While admitting weakness is never easy, it shows genuine effort, leading to more trust and respect between the two. If the candidate can articulate where and how you are trying to improve, it will go a long way in proving that they have the potential for success.

Tell about any moment that you are proud of

A candidate’s moments of personal achievement are what genuinely make them proud. This question allows candidates to share stories about their successes and also opens up the possibility of feedback on areas where they could have done better. In addition, it can help you determine if a potential employee is team-oriented or self-promoting, which is vital to consider before appointing them to a leadership role.

The moment that made them proud is something they value highly and would like to overdo in the future. Moreover, by asking about moments the candidate is proud of, you can also get a glimpse into their values and morals. Additionally, by asking about the proud moment in their life, you can determine if they are motivated by personal achievement or others’ happiness.

Why are you looking for a change?

This question allows candidates to disclose any internal or external factors that have led them to look for a change in their career. By asking why they are looking for a change, you can better assess if the candidate is motivated by personal ambition or some other intrinsic factor. Additionally, this question can help identify any potential red flags, like poor work ethic, and provide you with an opportunity to address them before finalizing the interview process. The way they talk about their previous work can be an important insight.

Candidates who want a change often possess qualities (e.g., leadership skills) that would benefit your organization, so it is essential to ask them about their motivations. Knowing why they are looking for a change can help you determine whether they would be a good fit for your company.

Do you have any questions for us?

This question allows candidates to ask any questions about the job or company. By fielding these questions, you can ensure that all of your applicants are adequately prepared for an interview and that you receive accurate feedback. Additionally, this question provides a natural break in the conversation, which can help avoid focusing on one’s comments and allow for additional questions from either party.

Moreover, you can gauge the candidate’s level of interest through this question. The interested ones will be curious and have more questions about the work and company after the conversation in the interview. You can also attempt to understand their comprehension abilities if they ask more about something you told them during the interview.

Conclusion

Interview questions are a vital part of the hiring process. Attrition is a termite for the health of companies. Therefore, it is a must that you hire correctly. Understanding the standard interview questions and how to answer them can increase your chances of hiring the best candidate for your role. This blog has provided you with ten basic interview questions commonly used in interviews and tips on how to analyze their answers. So, next time you’re interviewing candidates for a job, know the best interview questions to run with!

Practice active listening to analyze your candidates closely!

Download the free active listening toolkit for managers to become a pro at negotiation.

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