Ask Applicants These Three Questions

Written By: Jonnie Wright

I've sat in on a lot of job interviews, as an applicant and as an interviewer. Both parties in this process are usually well rehearsed, and on their best behavior - they've been there, done that. Applicants want to make a great impression, the interviewer wants to represent themselves and their company as being awesome. It is all a bit of theater. Nobody is THAT nice and THAT smart and THAT polite, certainly not all the time. Unless you are Alexa, and she already has a pretty solid gig.

Here are some applicant questions that can help cut through that "first date best behavior" veneer. I love these questions because a) I came up with them and b) they almost always get some kind of "I've never heard that one before" or "I have to think about that one" response. That's the idea! These questions force the applicant to think through the options - and pitfalls - of their answer.

I am looking for two basic qualities in people who apply for jobs with the companies that we represent. First, are they nice? You can't teach people how to be that. Second, can they problem solve? You CAN teach people that, but I don't want our clients wasting their valuable time and resources to help build that in new hires. Being an inherent problem solver can overcome other deficiencies.

We have many solutions to many business owner problems, including how to find - and keep - great employees.

We can help you with that.

Jonnie Wright is the President and CEO of The Buyosphere, a customer service training, marketing and recruiting company based in Des Moines, Iowa.