A job interview can be nerve-racking for even the most qualified and suitable candidate. Anxiety during an interview may not allow the candidate to deliver their best ability and often lose out on the job. However, by turning the heat up too high, you as an employer are at the risk of losing out on great candidates as well.
By allowing a candidate to relax and be at ease during an interview, you allow them to perform their best and put their best foot forward which allows you to judge them fairly and more effectively.
Here are a few things you can do as an interviewer to ensure the interview is less stressful:
Avoid Tense Atmosphere
When a candidate arrives, be hospitable by welcoming them to your workplace and offering them a glass of water or perhaps some coffee or tea. Letting the candidate wait in silence can often add to the tense atmosphere, instead welcome them to explore the office a little by pointing them to the kitchen or the restroom. It is advisable to avoid seating two candidates next to each other. Do what you must to make the atmosphere more welcoming and less tense.
Always be Professional and Courteous
You are a professional at your workplace and you want to come across as a professional when you’re interviewing a candidate. This is important because not only are you representing yourself but you’re also representing your company. Keep in mind that this doesn’t mean that you can’t be warm and engaging. If you are too cold, you may come across as rude and end up intimidating the candidate even more. Lighthearted jokes and small talk are a great way to lighten the mood.
Set the Stage
Give the candidate as much information as you can. Tell them about yourself; give them answers to questions like who you are and what you do. Let them know why the interview is being conducted and how closely you might be working with them. This allows the candidate to gain insight about how the organizational chain of command works and eventually feel much less intimidated. Just be mindful about giving them too much information which can lead to the candidate tailoring their answers to subsequent questions.
Avoid Playing Wheel of Fortune
Some interviewers like asking trick questions to see how quickly a candidate can think. However, this can lead to cornering the candidate by giving them the impression that you don’t trust them. Having them jump through hoops and setting traps may seem like an easy way to filter out candidates but it can often backfire and cause you to lose fantastic candidates.
Let the Candidate Settle in.
Hiring can be a long and frustrating process but that doesn’t mean you can get by without giving the candidate the time they deserve. Give the candidate some time to settle in and feel comfortable before you get up and personal. This goes back to the 3rd point where you set the stage, talk about the goals of the company and what you think stood out in their resume. By creating a mood of less scrutiny you make them feel more understood and let candidates be themselves.
A candidate’s comfort should be your paramount concern, especially in a competitive global economy like the one we live in today. The great candidates are often inundated with various options. By creating a good impression and being likable, it is more likely that a candidate will choose you over your competitors.
Goldbeck Recruiting has over 25 years of experience in finding perfect candidates for the job. Contact us and let us help you out.