The first and most important goal of an interviewer should always be to put your candidates at ease. As an employer, you know that you need to be able to trust your employees, and they in turn need to know they can trust you. That relationship of trust is built starting as soon as the interview itself. If you have not earned the trust of your candidates, then you are wasting your time as well as your candidates. Here are a number of ways you can establish trust with your job candidates to make sure they are a good fit for your team.
False promises and inaccurate descriptions of the job opening are easy for candidates to spot. Not only are they off-putting, but if you do hire someone with different expectations than the reality (whether of the job demands, corporate culture, or compensation), you will likely have to deal with higher staff turnover and wasted recruiting resources. The number one tip for building trust is honesty. While it is also important to remain professional, strive to also be open and share the requirements of the job up front.
Dispel the Tension
Interviews and the job application process are nerve wracking. Each and every serious candidate who sits across from you in an interview is worrying and striving to put their best foot forward and hoping you focus on their good qualities rather than their raw nerves. Interestingly enough, if you put your candidates at ease, you are more likely to see them for who they really are. Appearing friendly, personable, perhaps even making a joke or a little small talk will help your candidate relax and show you what kind of person, or employee, you are actually talking to. This is key in helping you make your decision about whether they are a good fit for your team.
Really Listen to What a Candidate Has to Say
Nobody likes being spoken over, or having to repeat themselves. Take the time to listen to what a candidate has to say. If you misunderstood something, ask for clarification. In an interview, the candidate should speak as much, if not more than the interviewer. Allow the conversation to go off in an unexpected direction, chat about the candidate’s interests and motivations. Ask good follow-up questions. Build a solid rapport with the candidate by showing that you care about what they have to say. You may even find that you are able to learn some valuable information about the market once you have established trust with the interviewee.
What’s worse than getting a flat-out rejection letter? Never hearing back. While often it is considered the candidates responsibility to send a thank you note or follow up in another way after an interview, failing to follow through with a candidate shows bad form on your part as well. Even if you are just letting them know they don’t meet your needs, being honest and open about why will help build your reputation as an employer. Offering advice or an interview debrief is always helpful, though it may not always be accepted. Who knows, maybe you will want to hire this person for another job opening.
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