How to Conduct a Successful Behavioral Interview

Tips to Successfully Conduct a Behavioral Interview

Interviewing is an important step in the employee selection and filtering process. Behavioral interviews are often used to gauge whether an employee has the skill set and behavior that your organization needs. This technique is recognized as one of the most effective since it gives you a glimpse of a candidate’s past working experience, how he or she handles and solves problems, and what traits he or she possesses.

With that said, as an employer, conducting effective behavioral interviews is integral to ensure you find the most suitable candidates to fill the spots in your company. It allows you to get insights on their skills and competencies on various candidates, so you can filter your options properly and pick out the best-qualified people. To help you conduct a successful interview, here are five tips that you can follow.

Know What You Are Looking For

The first important thing is to know what you are looking for in an employee. Are there particular traits or skills that you value in the workplace, or does your position require a certain competency? Knowing answers to these kinds of questions gives you a clearer direction on how to proceed with the interview. It also guides you in making a more straightforward decision on who to hire when the time comes.

Be Strategic in Selecting Questions

Since you only have a limited time to interview each candidate, you must strategically choose your questions. You want to get as much information as possible in the little time you have, so think about the most important questions to you and the company. Focus on specific important points, such as your company culture, key skills for the position, job function, and the like.

Ask for Details

Rather than asking several questions and getting general or surface-level answers, it would be better to focus on fewer questions but flesh out as many details as you can from them. When a candidate talks about an experience, probe for details to learn more about the small things that happened or how they navigated the situation. Another tip is to ask how other workers would describe the same situation, so you are sure that you do not just get the perspective from the candidate’s side.

Consistency is Key

Given each candidate’s uniqueness, it can be easy to stray away from a structure and get carried away while listening to a particular candidate’s answers. With that said, it is best to maintain consistency and stick with the same set of questions with the same order and wording for each candidate. This way, you can compare each candidate against each other more accurately, and it will be easier to decide while looking through your choices.

interview scoreCreate a Rating Scale

Having a rating scale can come in handy during evaluations as it helps you determine the most qualified candidates based on specific criteria. How the scale is designed will be up to you, so you can make it as simple or as complex as you see fit. Generally, however, it is best not to choose an overly simple structure as this can make it harder to distinguish candidates from one another. The more complex your scale is, the more variability you will see in the results, allowing you to see clearer comparisons from one candidate to another.

When done correctly, behavioral interviews can be vital tools used to select the best possible candidates to fill positions in your company. Thus, taking the time to master and polish the technique can go a long way. As the marketplace becomes more competitive, so does the need to be more critical about hiring decisions. By knowing how to conduct a successful behavior interview, you can surely achieve this.

Read more about what a behavioral interview is and why it’s effective here.