Tips for conducting an effective interview
The most effective way to minimize personnel problems in your equipment rental business is to hire good people to begin with. And the moment of truth when it comes to hiring is the interview. Here are some tips that should help you in the interview process in: 1) establishing what you want to accomplish in an interview; 2) deciding which questions to ask a candidate; and 3) knowing which potentially discriminatory questions to avoid regardless of the interview circumstances.
Key components of a good interview:
- Decide what you want to accomplish before you start the interview.
- Arrange a good interview environment.
- Let the job candidate do most of the talking and listen to what he/she has to say.
- Stay in control by keeping the focus of the conversation on the issues you want to cover.
- Take notes if you want to.
- Take the time to describe the job requirements in detail.
- Don't oversell the job.
- Remember the job interview is a two-way process. The prospect is interviewing you, too.
10 Good Questions To Ask
- Tell me about a typical day in your current (former) job.
- Give the candidate a hypothetical problem situation and ask how he would handle it.
- What strengths would you bring to this job?
- Why are you leaving (or why do you want to leave) your current position?
- Why are you interested in working for our rental business?
- Describe the best boss you ever had.
- Why do you think we should hire you?
- How do you deal with subordinates who aren't getting the job done?
- What approach do you take to delegate tasks to others?
- What type of people do you have the most difficulty working with?
Seven questions you should never ask in an interview and why
- Never ask a young, recently married woman if she intends to have children. It could lead to sexual discrimination charges if you never hire female candidates who answer the question in the affirmative. A good rule of thumb to follow to avoid sexual discrimination in your hiring process is to never ask a woman a question that you would not also ask a man.
- "Where were you born?" or "Where were your parents born?" might sound like simple background questions. But they can easily be construed as an attempt to screen national origin.
- Because you cannot discriminate against someone based on religion, you should never ask a candidate, "Where do you attend church?"
- While you can ask a candidate if he/she has ever been convicted of a crime, you must never ask, "Have you ever been arrested?"
- You can choose not to hire a handicapped candidate only if his disability would directly impair his ability to do the job in question. If a person's handicap will not hinder his job performance, then questions like, "How will you get to work in a wheelchair" should never be posed.
- The law specifically protects individuals between the ages of 40 and 70 from age discrimination. Of course, you should never ask an "older" candidate for his/her age. You also can't ask related questions like, "Which wars have you served in?" or "You mentioned you have children. So, how old are they?"
- Of course, you also cannot discriminate in your hiring process based on a candidate's race. Consequently, it is a off limits to ask something like, "We don't have any other Asian-Americans working here. Do you think you would get along all right in that environment?"