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  • Writer's pictureCEO Tools

Potential Winners: Interviewing Candidates

Updated: Jan 20, 2021

Finding great talent is the first step, but once you have identified potential winners, now it's time to go to the next step, the interview process.

Starting the Search

After reviewing all the talent, narrow down the group of interviewees to your top couple of picks. Then take the time to contact references for the top two or three candidates; this will help give you additional insight into the candidates. Next, decide which candidate you’d like to move forward with and set up an interview or (interviews) with them.

The Final Interview

If a candidate makes it to the final round of interviews, then it's now your turn to sell your company to them. In order to make the final interview successful, you must sway the candidate on why they should join your company.

Here are four tools to help you make a persuasive case during the final interview:

  • Have a great story to tell about your company.

  • Have a compensation plan better than your industry.

  • Offer the opportunity for personal growth.

  • Discuss your culture of ongoing coaching, praise, and recognition.

  • Tell candidates how communication, trust, feedback, and openness are an integral part of it.

Additional Ways to Interview Candidates

An interview is not just a one-on-one interview between the applicant and a hiring manager; it's the candidate's interaction with the company as a whole. Here are some ideas for additional ways to learn about your candidates.

One example is Michael Houlihan and Bonnie Harvey, founders of Barefoot Wine, would have a secret interviewer in their hiring process, their administrative assistant. She greeted and interacted with every candidate, asking what probably seemed like innocent, non-probing questions. Then, after candidates left, she reported to Houlihan and Harvey how they’d treated her and responded to her questions.

Another example is a business leader that always had a car service pick up candidates for executive-level positions at the airport. Little did the candidates know that what seemed like a casual conversation with the driver was part of the interview. The company used the same driver each time, and he had been trained on the questions to ask every candidate and reported back later.

Interviewing is an essential step for a business to find the best talent. If done effectively, the interview enables the employer to determine if a candidate is a good fit for the company and can be coached as a winner.

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