What the Recruiter is Thinking During a Job Interview

I always enjoy sharing advice with you about the other side of the job interview.  We all know what we, as an interviewee are thinking and trying to say but what does the recruiter think about and focus on while he or she might be asking a question?

Well, I came across a great article to share with you all and because I personally do not have any inside information about a recruiters mind, and luckily have not had to try and impress one in over a year, I am pulling out the most interesting parts of the article for you.

As it turns out, and as Jayne Mattson (a Senior VP at Keystone Associates here in Boston) writes, there are three main questions that a recruiter needs answered before he or she can make up their mind as to whether you are a good fit.  The recruiter might not come out and ask you these questions but you are being assessed to figure out…

  • Can this person do the job?
  • Will he do the job?
  • Will he fit in with the company culture?

And now, and I love top ten lists, here are the top ten questions that a recruiter may ask you during an interview.  Some of these I have written about before but it never hurts to highlight them again.

1.      As you reflect back at your last position, what was missing that you are looking for in your next role?

2.      What qualities of your last boss did you admire, and what qualities did you dislike?

3.      How would you handle telling an employee his position is being eliminated after working for the company for 25 years, knowing they would be emotional?

4.      How do you like to be rewarded for good performance?

5.      Can you give me an example of when your relationship with your manager went off track and how you handled it?

6.      When a person says “I have integrity,” what does that mean to you?

7.      Can you tell me about your experience working with the generation X or Y? What are the three qualities you admire about them?

8.      Do you think age discrimination exists in the job market and if so, why?

9.      Can you convince me you are the most qualified person for this role based on what we have discussed?

10.  As you look at your previous companies, can you describe in detail which company culture did you excel in the most and why?

Basic and to the point right?  But be careful, you NEVER want to speak badly about your previous employers so tread lightly when being honest.

Now go on and read the article, Inside the Recruiter’s Head: What He’s Really Asking You During the Interview, and get tips on how to answer to the questions above.

What did you do today?

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