Behavioral Interviewing

There are many methodologies behind interviewing potential new hires. One of the most effective ways we’ve found is called Behavioral Interviewing. What is behavioral interviewing? It’s a way to find out more about the candidate through open-ended questions prompting examples of what happened, what was done and how a positive outcome was achieved in a certain situation.

The goal is to find a balance between a cultural fit and the candidate’s technical skills. Traditional interview questions like, “tell me about yourself” or “What are your strengths and weaknesses?” are very limited in telling you more about a candidate. Most candidates have most likely rehearsed answers to these commonly asked questions. We recommend developing a list of standard interview questions mixing behavioral and technical, and intersperse them – this helps keep the answers honest and makes the shift between behavioral and technical more natural.

What are you looking for in the candidate’s answers?

There are several things you want responses to in this type of Q & A scenario:

• Does their answer align with how you’d like your employees to respond to challenging situations?

• Are the lessons the candidate learned from their experiences valuable in the context of your company’s work environment and team dynamic?

• What do their answers reveal about their personality traits in a work setting?

• Are they goal oriented? Independent? Capable of coping with high-stress situations?

Equally important is the attitude they have while answering. Listen closely for hints of negativity or complaining when they describe the challenge they were facing.

Behavioral Interview Sample Questions

Below you will find a list of some of the best Behavioral Interviewing types of questions.

Teamwork – Tell me about a time when:

• You had to work closely with someone whose personality was very different from yours.

• You faced a conflict with a team member. How did you handle that?

• We all make mistakes we wish we could take back. Tell me about a time you wish you’d handled a situation differently with a colleague.

• You needed to get information from someone who wasn’t very responsive. What did you do?

Motivation and Values

• Describe a time when you saw a problem and took the initiative to do research and/or correct it, rather than waiting for someone else to do it.

Ability to Adapt

• Describe a time when your team or company was undergoing a big change. How did that impact you and how did you adapt?

Sprinkling in behavioral-style questions with your technical and industry-related questions is an excellent way to find the best candidates that best fit into your company culture. If you need help with coming up with your standard list of interview questions, Contact Us for help!

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