There are many articles and guides on how to interview potential employees; however, I often get asked if I have a standard interview format or template. This is a brief generic template that includes the process I follow and some of my favorite questions to ask. This can all be customized as circumstances warrant, but this is generally a good basic template from which to get started. Most importantly, always remember this key point: the interview is about THEM not YOU. Regardless of your format or questions, let the interviewee speak and open up and push back on them to make them elaborate upon and explain their responses.
Thank you for coming in. How was your commute – how long did it take – any problems getting here?
Describe my role, briefly. Describe the company, the role, and what we are looking for, briefly.
- What do you know, if anything, about our company?
- Do you have any questions for me before we begin?
- Tell me a little bit about yourself – where are you from, educational background, work background.
- If you had to use one word to describe yourself, what would it be?
- What is your greatest strength?
- Do you have a weakness, or something upon which you need to improve?
- Describe how you handle stress and pressure – and give me an example of a stressful situation and how you overcame it?
- What was your favorite job? Why?
- What was your least favorite job? Why?
- When I call your former boss for a reference, what will s/he say about you?
- Why do you want this job – what is it about the job that attracted you?
- Why should we hire you?
- Do you believe you have the skills necessary to do the job (list some of the required skills)?
- Now that we have had time to talk more about the company and the role, do you have any questions for me?
Thank you for coming in.
Describe the next steps in the hiring process.
Joseph E. Fournier is an Attorney and a CPA who has more than twenty years of experience in a variety of business legal matters, including start-ups and company formations, drafting shareholder and operating agreements, contracts, employment law, commercial litigation, tax planning and audit defense, and mergers and acquisitions (M&A). He also handles estate planning matters, such as business succession planning, wills, trusts, and probate.