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The Right Question.

The Right Question.

The most valuable part of any education is learning to ask the right questions at the right time.

I recently sat in on over 40 employee interviews. The questions asked were, for the most part, just filling time — questions to get the interviewer through the 40 minutes allotted. Most questions asked would never produce an answer useful to the employer in their assessment of the candidate’s intangible qualities. The questions were awful, and not at all suited to understanding the candidate in the brief time available. The Vulcan mind meld technique is not available; it is painful, may be illegal, and possibly fictional… Following are my five favorite questions to ask a candidate for employment.

How do you handle pressure?

Discuss with us your abilities, and how you would plan and schedule a major project.

What did you dislike about your last job?

What are the major lessons you have learned in life?

What is the art of the (position/profession) you are interviewing for today?

You have only a short time in an interview, so you need to get to the essentials of the exercise — and that is to determine who the candidate is — not just on paper, but in person. After all, we are never better than when we are on paper.

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