How to select candidates and interview them for an important position

You might be ready to hire your first employee, a right-hand “man,” or an important addition to your business.

You may not be sure exactly which role the new person will fill, but you know you need help. Decide first if you are looking for someone to take on some of your responsibilities or for someone to whom you can delegate tasks. If you want to delegate, carry a clip board around for a day or two and list everything you do. This will help you create a job description.

The Service Corps of Retired Executives (SCORE) has another idea: Consider whether you could use someone with skills you don’t have.

What skills are you weak in that might make your business grow?  In your job ad, give a clear outline of duties. Play up the opportunity to influence the direction of the business, advise consultants quoted in Money.

For the interviews, SCORE recommends:

  • * Provide candidates with a company profile in advance so they can relate their experience to your company.
  • Prepare a list of questions. Use openended questions like “Tell us about a challenge you overcame in your work life.”
  • Allow a full hour between interviews. Create a relaxed environment and spend 30 to 45 minutes with each candidate. Use the rest of the hour to write down your thoughts of the person immediately after the interview.
  • Ask each person the same questions so you can compare their answers.
  • Be careful not to dominate the discussion. You should talk only 20 percent of the time and encourage the candidate to speak 80 percent of the time. The more they talk, the better picture you will have of them.
  • When looking at candidates’ employment histories, be wary of someone who moved around a lot, particularly for more money.
2017-05-08T15:02:02+00:00

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