Recruiting & Hiring Blog for HR Professionals

What’s the Most Important Interview Question?

What's the Most Important Interview Question?

Businesses great and small all have one thing in common – everyone needs to interview candidates during the hiring process. Whether you’re a Mom and Pop shop on Main Street looking for your very first employee, or a large organization that hires hundreds of people a year, no one makes it through the front door without meeting face-to-face for a sit-down interview.

Since interviews are such an essential part of the hiring process, we asked a few of our team members to answer the question: “What’s the most important question to ask in an interview and why?” Here’s what they had to say:

Hyrell Implementation Specialist Lisa Hellene 



Implementation Specialist, Lisa Hellene, says:

"You should always ask: 'Why did you apply for this position?'  This is a critical question that will show whether an applicant truly wants to work for you (in the exact position that's available) or if the candidate is simply stabbing in the dark while looking for his or her next paycheck.  

If the applicant's past skills and experience do not match the available position, they may have a very good reason for changing their career path -- but unless you ask you, won't know."  

Account Executive Emily Russen



Account Executive, Emily Russen, says: 

"A great question to ask is 'What is your greatest weakness?' Applicants might give you a typical cliché, such as "I am a perfectionist," but that is really not what you want to look for. A good answer to this question would be something that explains how the applicant plans to improve on his/her weakness. For example, look for the applicant who says: 'I can be unorganized at times, but I am working on writing things down and I have a new daily planner to write notes in throughout the day.'" 

Hyrell Community Manager Jessica Palmeri 



Community Manager, Jessica Palmeri, says:

"I always like questions that highlight past experience and demonstrate critical thinking skills. For example: 'Describe a situation where you made a big mistake. What did you do to rectify the situation?' This is not only a great interview question; it also shows that you don’t demand absolute perfection on the job (because everyone makes mistakes!) Plus, if the applicant knows how to solve his or her own problems, that's the sign of a great potential hire." 

Director of Business Development Patrick Clark





Director of Business Development, Patrick Clark, says:

"'What questions do you have for me?' is a great interview question on many levels. It gives you insight into how the candidate thinks and how the candidate prepared for the interview (did he research your company? Did she research your business model or industry thoroughly? Does this person seem to understand what will be asked of her?). I think this question also gives you a deeper understanding about what makes this person tick - what do they care about? 

And of equal or greater importance, this question allows the candidate to ask questions that will better help her determine if your company is a good fit for her.  Remember, interviewing is a two-way street and it should be treated as such."

Are you looking for more questions to spice up your next interview? Dowload our latest eBoook: 100 Interview Questions You Didn’t Think to Ask 

Free Download: Interviewing Job Applicants: 100 Questions You Didn't Think to Aslk

Topics: Team Hyrell, Interviews, interview questions

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