The Heretic Logo


The Heretic is a free bi-weekly dispatch delivering insights into leadership in exponential times. For entrepreneurs, corporate irritants and change makers. Raw, unfiltered and opinionated.

be radical.
Disrupt Disruption
Build What Matters

Jan 13th, 2014 Share: Share on Twitter Share on Facebook Share on LinkedIn

Interview Your Heart Out

I’ve hired people in different capacities for most of my working life. As a founder and CEO, as someone charged with building new teams, as someone asked to support the hiring efforts in another team… I believe I never got the science completely right but developed somewhat of a gut feel and a tool chest filled with questions and techniques which worked for me.

One of the common issues I see in hiring is that interviewers ask hypothetical questions: You ask the candidate how he would solve problem x (often a problem in your organization). I believe pretty much all that tells you is how capable the candidate is in making stuff up. It says nothing about their ability to actually do the work.

Personally I always asked a potential hire to walk me through a project which went wrong. I ask them to walk me through all the gory details and ask tons of questions. When the candidate says “we” I ask what her personal involvement was. When she talks about something in the abstract I ask her to go into the concrete details of the situation. When she talks strategy I ask for tactics.

Nothing predicts future behavior better than past behavior (in an interview situation).

My good friend and kick-ass CEO Jana Eggers likes to ask “Tell me about your last project. Who was involved and what was the biggest challenge?” — an excellent starting point for further exploration.

1,196 Posts and Counting.
Don't miss the next post. Sign up now!