Interviewing technique

Home Forum Chat Forum Interviewing technique

Viewing 40 posts - 1 through 40 (of 41 total)
  • Interviewing technique
  • Premier Icon scotroutes
    Subscriber

    Lock them in the room and see how long it takes them to escape?

    grahamt1980
    Member

    The trick is in the questions. Ask them for examples of when they have faced x situation and how they responded to it.
    From there you can dig deeper into their answers.
    Another good one to weed out the idiots is to ask them what problems or challenges do they see in taking on the role.
    If they say none with no justification, then in my experience run away.

    Premier Icon CHB
    Subscriber

    I would say get to know them. Ask them what excites them, what they want to achieve in life. Skills can be learnt. Attitudes are harder to shift.

    bamboo
    Member

    Nice idea but I suspect HR might not like that approach!

    Premier Icon matt_outandabout
    Subscriber

    Set them a task.

    I’ve always got folk to do something…

    Premier Icon scotroutes
    Subscriber

    Your tax return?

    jonba
    Member

    Give them a relevant problem and ask them to solve it.

    I tend to ask a question that you wouldn’t expect some one to know the answer to but has a logical process to figure it out. Bit easier in chemistry though.

    One that got some interesting answers that I was given was:

    You have an oven with a sheet of metal in it. You have some flexible insulation. How would you keep the metal cool for as long as possible.

    There are probably standard problem solving exercises available on the internet. I’ve done inbox exercises in interviews, and various group challenges.

    Basil
    Member

    We have started to use Thomas profiling

    Premier Icon Cougar
    Subscriber

    Give them a relevant problem and ask them to solve it.

    Give them a problem that’s relevant to them.

    I once interviewed a car mechanic applying for a tech support role. He failed all my stock questions, totally green, didn’t have a clue. I changed tack, “my car doesn’t start, what do you do?” Well, he said, I’d pull a fuel line to check if there was fuel getting delivered, if it is then it’s probably an electrical problem, if not then investigate fuel issues… and proceeded to give a perfect binary breakdown of fault diagnosis. We took him on as a gamble (and at my insistence), inside of six months he was one of the best techies we’d ever hired.

    Premier Icon rickmeister
    Subscriber

    Give them a few mins to teach you something

    Ask what project asked the most of you and is a good indication of your ability. I think this would come up under Google, interviewing, most important question

    Edukator
    Member

    Use the insulation to protect my hand and take the metal out of the oven.

    Premier Icon andy4d
    Subscriber

    Ask them to tell you about a time something did not go to plan, what was the problem, how did they fix it, what would they do different next time.

    bamboo
    Member

    Thanks all, some useful stuff there, keep the advice coming!

    TheBrick
    Member

    Ask them for examples of when they have faced x situation and how they responded to it.

    This is the sign of a awful interviewer. These types of questions play to bullshiters with some made up or exaggerated story.

    If you want to see how they solve a problem give them one. E.g. how many piano tuners are there in the UK?
    Encourage them to work through a answer. Or if the problems are more how deal with a problem of a project that is behind schedule ask them how they would minimise the delay. If come up with a idea now block that reason. keep pushing see how they think about the problem.

    TheBrick
    Member

    Ask them to tell you about a time something did not go to plan, what was the problem, how did they fix it, what would they do different next time.

    Awful interviewer again. Like something from 1985. Only any good if you are looking for bullshiters.

    Premier Icon bruneep
    Subscriber

    basil wrote:

    We have started to use Thomas profiling

    You weirdo

    [video]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MuCPwemlWpA[/video]

    TheBrick
    Member

    Give them a problem that’s relevant to them.

    I once interviewed a car mechanic applying for a tech support role. He failed all my stock questions, totally green, didn’t have a clue. I changed tack, “my car doesn’t start, what do you do?” Well, he said, I’d pull a fuel line to check if there was fuel getting delivered, if it is then it’s probably an electrical problem, if not then investigate fuel issues… and proceeded to give a perfect binary breakdown of fault diagnosis. We took him on as a gamble (and at my insistence), inside of six months he was one of the best techies we’d ever hired.

    Perfect example.

    grahamt1980
    Member

    BS – an awful interviewer would accept what they are saying as the truth.
    A shit interviewer it doesn’t matter what the question is and they will get conned.

    bamboo
    Member

    Can anybody offer any advice when interviewing somebody to try and see how they will react to/try and solve problems? It’s easy to see experience from a cv, but trying to understand their character is less easy to identify at interview

    Cheers in advance

    jonba
    Member

    Edukator – Reformed Troll
    Use the insulation to protect my hand and take the metal out of the oven.

    In that case you might as well unplug the oven and save the hassle. Which was one answer. There are lots of answers. What I was looking for (with some prompting) was coming up with a selection of potential ideas then deciding which might be best in practice – or how you might test them. To be honest it is more about a conversation to understand how people think.

    I did consider asking the badly worded plane on a conveyor belt question. If nothing else I’d find out who was a STW time waster.

    km79
    Member

    If I am interviewing for a site position or an inspector, I like to go and take a photo of one of our sites. I then blow it up to A3 and ask the person to talk me through what they think is going on and how they would go about carrying out an inspection or a task on that site.

    The poor ones will get stuck very soon and start to ramble, the good ones come up with all sorts of stuff that might not be accurate but shows they can work something out for themselves by asking questions.

    Premier Icon orangespyderman
    Subscriber

    If I am interviewing for a site position or an inspector, I like to go and take a photo of one of our sites. I then blow it up to A3 and ask the person to talk me through what they think is going on and how they would go about carrying out an inspection or a task on that site.

    The poor ones will get stuck very soon and start to ramble, the good ones come up with all sorts of stuff that might not be accurate but shows they can work something out for themselves by asking questions.This is good, though not easily applicable to my line of work. I’ve interviewed a lot in the last 15 years or so. My biggest take away has been : you need to find questions that allow them to show what they can do. Might sound obvious, but for a while I spent interviews trying to catch people out. If that’s what you’re trying to do, you might as well not bother interviewing. You’ll always find someone who doesn’t understand the question in the same way as you do, for example.

    Confirmation bias is a huge issue in interviewing. If you like someone in the first few minutes, or based on their CV, you’ll spend the rest of the interview trying to confirm they’re the right one for you, and ask questions accordingly, and likewise, if you just don’t like the person you’ll waste an hour of everyone’s time trying to demonstrate that in a way that HR will accept. Whatever you do, prep to avoid behaving like that in so far as it is possible.

    Tom_W1987
    Member

    I once interviewed a car mechanic applying for a tech support role. He failed all my stock questions, totally green, didn’t have a clue. I changed tack, “my car doesn’t start, what do you do?” Well, he said, I’d pull a fuel line to check if there was fuel getting delivered, if it is then it’s probably an electrical problem, if not then investigate fuel issues… and proceeded to give a perfect binary breakdown of fault diagnosis. We took him on as a gamble (and at my insistence), inside of six months he was one of the best techies we’d ever hired.

    +1

    Nice story.

    Confirmation bias is a huge issue in interviewing. If you like someone in the first few minutes, or based on their CV, you’ll spend the rest of the interview trying to confirm they’re the right one for you, and ask questions accordingly, and likewise, if you just don’t like the person you’ll waste an hour of everyone’s time trying to demonstrate that in a way that HR will accept. Whatever you do, prep to avoid behaving like that in so far as it is possible.

    This. I’ve only ever turned one interview around from outright hostility from the outset because I was seen as a filler – all the others than have been successful, peoples body language gave it away as soon as I walked in the room.

    Premier Icon superstu
    Subscriber

    Ask them for examples of when they have faced x situation and how they responded to it.
    This is the sign of a awful interviewer. These types of questions play to bullshiters with some made up or exaggerated story.

    Agree with the first bit – terrible interview question in my opinion. Just lots of waffle and irrelevant scenarios exaggerated to give the answer they think you’re after.

    I just try asking whatever questions I can to try and get into what makes them tick and what drives them. You’ll then get an idea of whether they’ll fit your team and your culture.

    hodgynd
    Member

    I was once on a sales training course where there was quite an extensive Q&A on 6 sheets of A4 paper which we had 5mins to complete ..prior to the first question there was an instruction to read through every question prior to starting ..most of the course mates upon reading the first couple of questions and seeing the time slipping away panicked and started to answer ..
    At the end of the questions was an instruction that having read through all of them ..do nothing else other than to put your pen on top of the sheet ..
    The object : to see if you could follow instructions to the letter.
    Not a bad exercise as part of an interview if you are unsure ..

    stealthcat
    Member

    The first interview for my current role, I was handed a set of scenarios and asked how I would get the information I needed to deal with them.

    By day 3 in the job, I was trying to sort out those same situations…

    Premier Icon Cougar
    Subscriber

    At the end of the questions was an instruction that having read through all of them ..do nothing else other than to put your pen on top of the sheet ..

    I did the same exercise in junior school. The questions got increasingly silly as you got towards the end; “stand on your chair and shout ‘hurray!'” was one.

    Edukator
    Member

    But the oven would take time to cool down if you just unplugged it, and you need to act fast to stop the the metal heating up which means getting it out fast, besides the insulation is there to be used.

    Are they testing me to see how I react to dealing with idiots?

    Best let it go, keep smiling and try to deal with the next dumb question pleasantly and reasonably.

    Stuff the insulation down the interviewers throat and steal his wallet, **** the sheet of metal

    soobalias
    Member

    relax, nobody said the oven was even on.

    #donothingoption#1

    Premier Icon Cougar
    Subscriber

    What I was looking for (with some prompting) was coming up with a selection of potential ideas then deciding which might be best in practice – or how you might test them.

    My first question would be “is the oven switched on?” There’s nothing in the question to suggest that it is, just because it’s an oven doesn’t mean that it’s inherently a hot place.

    Premier Icon Cougar
    Subscriber

    Damn you, 39 seconds.

    Rob Hilton
    Member

    But the oven would take time to cool down if you just unplugged it

    Only if it was switched on.

    Do I get the job?

    Dagnammit!

    Premier Icon chrisdw
    Subscriber

    I am awful at job interviews mostly because of questions like this:

    Ask them for examples of when they have faced x situation and how they responded to it.
    Another good one to weed out the idiots is to ask them what problems or challenges do they see in taking on the role.

    Anything that involves me having to come up with examples, my brain just cant do it. If I was given a problem to solve or a scenario to work out then i can generally sort that out; as long as I have the means and knowledge of course!

    Pretty much, that guy in the quote by ‘TheBrick’ would be me. I literally can’t get words out for ‘typical interview questions’.

    hodgynd
    Member

    Cougar ..obviously the same set of questions then 🙄
    Did you stand on the chair …

    Premier Icon bigdean
    Subscriber

    I’d love advice the other way around, few years ago was seriously looking at carrer change back to manufacture/ machining but at higher level. Got loads of curiosity interviews (one admitted as such) can never seem to get past interviews though.

    PeterPoddy
    Member

    You have an oven with a sheet of metal in it. You have some flexible insulation. How would you keep the metal cool for as long as possible.

    Take it out of the oven. Easy. 🙂

    FuzzyWuzzy
    Member

    I think the “give me an example of a time when you’ve solved a complex problem…” type question are OK as long as someone interviewing has the knowledge to query details given by the interviewee (it’s easy to catch bullshitters out if you have a bit of knowledge in the subject).

    I also sometimes describe a situation where my team has worked through a complex issue and given it to the interviewee (first as a high level scenario and then gradually feed them more details of observations etc. so you test there thinking and problem solving). This works pretty well in IT, not sure about other sectors though.

    Premier Icon mmannerr
    Subscriber

    In IT it is easy to screw up the interview situation – this applies to both sides. 😀
    We usually have a manager and technical person to do first part of interview. Have had cases where DB Admin was interviewing UX designer…. you can guess how well it did go.

    bikebouy
    Member

    Back in the 90’s (when the world was full of the ghastly red braces brigade) I heard a story of an interview whereby the interviewer was sat in a chair reading some obnoxious newspaper the size of Wapping, the interviewee entered the room and the interviewer asked the interviewee “go on impress me”
    So the interviewee set fire to the interviewers newspaper.

    Now, that story did the rounds. Recounted many times, maybe embellished maybe not.

    But the moral of my little story there is:

    Today’s interviews invariably consist of some role play questions and give examples of situations where you faced problems and either solved them, failed or asked for help.. but saw the problem through.

    Let’s not go back to those bullshite nobber day era of the 90’s eh.

Viewing 40 posts - 1 through 40 (of 41 total)

You must be logged in to reply to this topic.