How to Conduct an Interview

I remember the first time I conducted an interview. I was interviewing a potential intern and to be honest, I had no clue what I was doing. Being a good interviewee is just as important as being a good interviewer. When I realized I didn’t know what I was doing, I held a meeting with my manager to discuss the best interviewing practices. Here are a few tips I took away on the best way to conduct an interview.

How to Conduct an Interview

  • Ask to shadow an interview. This is a great learning experience and a good opportunity to takes notes on the best interview practices.
  • Review the interviewee’s resume ahead of time. Get a feel for their experiences and begin thinking of questions based off of what you see.
  • Start off personal. Relax the mood by asking about themselves and then telling them about yourself.
  • Don’t go off a script. You don’t want to make it uncomfortable. Keep conversation flowing and be yourself. You can jot down notes of topics you want to cover, but going off of a list of questions can seem inauthentic. The interviewee is more nervous than you are!
  • Chose the best person for the job. Don’t base your judgement off of someone you think you’d be good friends with. While it is important to have “chemistry”, your best friend might not be the best co-worker.
  • Ask open-ended questions. Not questions that can be answered with a quick yes and no. Open-ended questions keep the conversation flowing.
  • Keep it concise. Try not to go over (or under) the time allotted. Sometimes you can be so deep into conversation the interview can last an hour! This has happened to me.
  • Take notes. Especially if you’re conducting several interviews in one day, you want to make sure you remember your thoughts on each person.
  • The #1 rule of advice: Go into an interview knowing exactly what you’re looking for. This is the first step in being able to craft the right questions to ask. If you’re looking for a good media pitcher, ask about their past pitching experiences. Look for specific examples that will aid your client and team.

What are some other tips you found helpful for conducting an interview? Even though I’ve conducted many, I’m definitely not a pro!

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