If interviews can be deceiving, then what is the right way to hire?

12th Oct 2016
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Consider this. You study your field of interest for many painstaking years. Then, you step into the real world in search of a job, only meet a possible employer who will then decide the fate of your career based on a 15-minute discussion you had. “How’s this even possible?” you ask yourself, questioning the absurdity of your position. How could anyone judge your abilities in such short time?

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An in-person interview is not just a face-to-face conversation with another person. It is a way to judge the candidate’s knowledge and capabilities required for the position applied for. Now let’s pause and think for a moment – are such interviews really a good way to choose an employee?

Ron Friedman, a psychologist and author of The Best Place To Work doesn’t think so. According to him, 80 percent of the people lie about their skills and talents and even boast knowledge that they may have acquired just five minutes before the drill. This means that there is no solid confirmation of the authenticity of the information exchanged during an interview.

Besides, there are many instances when a candidate is judged, hired or rejected on the basis of their appearance and their ability speak the second language fluently, which in India, is English. Unless the job specifically requires good English skills, there is little reason to make this a criterion for selecting a candidate.

That said, you can easily find a pool of articles that promote a particular way of dressing, sitting, talking, shaking hands, making eye contact and what not – all perfect tricks to nail the first impression. But as an interviewer, these tricks really just cloud your judgement.

The ideal way to hire

A better way to hire someone is to prepare a scenario where you can analyse their abilities on the job. Consider theatre auditions for instance. In such an audition, the casting team focuses mostly on the acting skills of a person for a particular role. Now imagine applying this technique to fields like sales, IT and even marketing. Since there are many people who are knowledgeable but lack the necessary social skills to make a good first impression, giving them a chance to exhibit their skills on the job can help a great deal. This will not only benefit the candidate but also your company.

So, instead of asking a job candidate questions for an hour, give them a chance to show you their skills. If you are looking for a sales manager, give your candidate a task to sell something. If you are hiring a writer, ask him to write a sample. If you are hiring a graphic designer, ask them to design a social media post or something related. This way, you can be assured that you have hired the right candidate.

Ask your existing team to design test assignments for your candidates today, and watch  the best talents join you as a part of your organisation.

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