When you hire a new employee, it’s customary to go through a rigorous interview—asking him or her many questions to assess the fit for the position.

Before you ask your applicants any questions, though, it may be wise to ask yourself some. Through the proper self-inventory, you can hone in on exactly what you are trying to accomplish with this hire—and exactly what kind of person you need to find.

But what kinds of questions should you be asking to clarify your goals for the hiring process? I’ll give you eight to start with.

Questions to Ask Before Making a Hire

  1. Why are we adding this position? If you can’t answer this question pretty clearly, then it might be reason enough for you to pause and reevaluate. The last thing you want is to spend money and time recruiting for a position that’s superfluous or ill-defined.
  2. In what direction will this new hire take our company? You want new recruits who contribute to the big picture, and advance your company’s mission. Make sure you clarify exactly how that should happen.
  3. How will the person in this position engage with, and report to, the leadership team? Who will the direct supervisor be? What’s the reporting structure?
  4. What are the qualities we need for this role? What does it look like to be an excellent candidate for the job in question? Brainstorm some keywords—both soft skills and core competencies.
  5. What would we like this person to accomplish within their first 60 days? Six months? Year? Have a basic definition of what success looks like for this role, both short-term and down the line.
  6. Is there anyone in our company who has done this job before? If you’re filling a seat that one of your employees once held, it’s worth looking to him or her as a model for how the role should be carried out.
  7. Do our peers and competitors have this role? Are you filling a position that other companies have—and if so, can you look to them for examples or guidance?
  8. What should the ideal candidate have done previously? What kind of experience do you need in this role?

These questions should help you think clearly about how you’re going to fill your open position—successfully. To learn more about the best ways to grow your team, contact me today. You can reach Dr. Rick Goodman at www.rickgoodman.com or call 888-267-6098.


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