Welp, the summer is officially over here in the Great White North. Edmonton has seen its first single digit temps (Celsius) in the last few days and there doesn’t seem to be a recovery coming anytime soon. Hope you all had a great summer while it lasted!
Today my video blog focuses on what I call, ‘The Second P’ of interviewing. You can check out the video here:
Just a quick recap if this is the first time you’ve read my blog:
In my previous article I talked about what I call, ‘The Four P’s’ of hiring interviews:
1- People –
2- Place –
3- Program –
4- Practice –
This week, I want to explore the second ‘P’ of the 4 ‘P’s: Place. To set the context for this, it’s important to highlight the difference between a formal, structured interview that will determine the ultimate hiring decision, vs. a more informal ‘meet-and-greet’ interview, whose purpose is an initial chance to get to know the candidate(s) for the role you’re hiring for. For a meet and greet type of interview, a more relaxed, informal environment such as a coffee shop, restaurant or airport lounge, might be the perfect location. On the other hand, a more formal hiring interview will require a more formal environment. Keeping this in mind, let’s set the context for location for a formal hiring interview:
- Comfort: Make sure you’ve got comfortable seating and space. Avoid places that are cramped, cluttered or otherwise uncomfortable. Check for good temperature, ventilation and lighting. Of course the ideal places are usually business-associated such as offices or boardrooms. If you don’t have access to such facilities, I’ve found the local library has great spaces for meetings that can be reserved. Other places include short term office space or business centres that offer rentals on an ‘as-needed’ basis. If you’re travelling, airports and hotels often provide temporary business space that is available to rent for short periods of time. Don’t forget to find interview locations that offer wifi and other technical support if you plan on having media presentations or are using your laptop or tablet for the interview.
- Quiet: This is why coffee shops or airport lounges are not desirable formal interview locations – Noise. You and your interview candidate will need to focus and the worst places to do this are where there is other competing conversations and sounds. Find a place where you can hear each other without having to raise your voices and where you won’t be subject to prying ears!
- No Distractions: I know from my own (learned) experience that there’s nothing more distracting than trying to conduct a formal hiring interview in a public space. If you’ve done this before, then you may relate to what I’m saying. If you’re thinking about doing it, then I urge you to reconsider. Trying to conduct an interview with interruptions from wait staff, passersby or other people simply milling about, can be annoying at the least and at the worst, can be outright disruptive to the flow and effectiveness of the interview.
Remember, it’s not only you who are doing the judging and decision-making during an interview. So is the candidate. It’s our responsibility as good prospective employers, to give the candidate not only our best first impression and undivided attention, but also to provde them with a quality interview experience. The location of the interview plays a key role in this. In the end, having a comfortable, quiet and distraction-free location for your interviews will not only support you towards WAY BETTER RESULTS in terms of hiring outcomes, but will also help you maintain control over and confidence in, your interview process.
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Then leave a comment below on your experience, thoughts or advise on the above ideas.
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Lee Hodgins, CPHR works with entrepreneurs, business owners & hiring managers to leverage the power of hiring interviews to dramatically boost their effectiveness and accuracy in finding the most qualified job candidates. More information is awaiting you online at www.guerrillainterviewing.com