It can be tough to find good employees and one factor attributing to this is not asking good interview questions. This blog post will break down why.

Going with Our Gut
When we hire someone, we typically make that decision primarily on our gut feeling about the individual. This statement does not mean that we do not put the applicant through a thorough process, but more so that we typically make this decision based on a few key pieces of information:

  • The applicant’s background (resume)
  • The applicant’s appearance
  • The applicant’s answers to the interview questions

More often than not, we will put a set of applicants through our process and then look at those three areas and pick the applicant that we “feel” best about at the end of the process.

If You Don’t Have Good Interview Questions
The going with your feeling is not a huge issue, the bigger issue is what you are basing this gut feeling on. When you look at the three things mentioned that you typically factor in – resume, appearance, and answers to questions, notice that there is and should be a lot of weight on the applicant’s answers to your questions.

That is OK and you should look at how they answer your questions, but stop to think about what happens if you do not ask the right or good interview questions. You will not have the information you need to make a good decision and this is what leads you to hiring someone more based on appearance and that is when you can end up hiring someone that doesn’t work out as expected.

Identify the Worst but not the Best
If you ask an average list of questions, you can typically get answers that disqualify applicants that are clearly not the right fit. This is good and this is what happens when an interviewer does an average job – they screen out the clearly unqualified.

But the problem here is that if the interview questions are not designed well, yes you screen the unqualified but you will likely not do a great job of identifying the perfect or best candidate. Meaning we will clearly see those that do not fit well at all, but we will not clearly see those that fit best.

Hiring the Wrong People
The end result is that we often end up with an employee that is not performing well or at least up to our expectations. And we reflect back to the interview and think that it went so well. Yes it went well, but the problem was that you did not ask the right questions at that time to determine that they were not the best fit.

Hard to Find Good People
You often hear managers and business owners say that it is “hard to find good people these days”. When they say this they are pointing their finger at the employees that they hire.

There are good people
But the reality is that there are good people to out there. It is the interviewer’s job to filter through the pool of candidates to identify those that do not fit well and those that do.

The finger should sometimes be pointed more at the interviewer than the employee that did not work out. Maybe that interviewer did not ask good interview questions and if they did, someone else might have been hired and that person might have been more in the category of “good people” that seem to be hard to find.

There are more bad applicants
There are also a lot of bad people to hire. Mathematically speaking, there are more bad candidates available than good. You simply need the right process that allows you to filter out all of the bad to get to the best.

When you don’t ask the right questions, you don’t do a good job at this and this is where you end up with a scenario that the majority of the people that you hire are not top notch and you find yourself saying “it is hard to find good people these days”.


InterviewScripter helps you to build out a list of good interview questions.