5 thoughts on “Do We Place Too Much Emphasis on the Interview?

  1. We don’t place too much emphasis but too little and, as a result, both sides of the table put far too little preparation into it and, more often than not, it is a disappointing for all.

    An Interview does not start with the HR Minion saying; “So, tell me about yourself…..” It starts, if you want success, way before that.

  2. We are currently interviewing for our next CEO. So we are going to give control of a $70 million dollar organization to someone based on two 60 minute interviews and a couple of dinners. We had 200 applicants for this position and they all have certainly been professionally vetted, but I wonder if there is a better way.

  3. Pretty much the best thing an interview tells you, is how well the person interviews. And sociopaths/grifter/manipulators usually interview very well.

  4. The importance of the interview varies a lot by the nature of the job.

    For a sales position, yeah, the interview is all. If you can’t sell yourself, you can’t sell much of anything else. A lot of leadership positions, the interview is be pretty useful to test interpersonal skills.

    For a lot of jobs, though, the interview doesn’t demonstrate anything job related. For a programming job, for instance, it’s far more useful to have your current staff review previous work, at their leisure and without the candidate present. The interview itself tells you little more than whether or not they bathe before important meetings and speak in complete sentences. (And neither of those is necessarily a reason to pass on qualified candidate, especially if they’re going to be working remotely.)

    1. Yes, it is so dependent on the type of position. I am the sort of person who interviews very well, but my husband (who is a software and programming guy) consistently bombs interviews. He’s got all the skills, but just fails to prepare and is really bad at selling himself.
      Ironically, he just accepted a new job that he never even interviewed for. A company contacted him out of the blue after two completely unrelated people had talked about him in the last year. I think what really helped was that they had my husband join a conference call, where his expertise could really shine while they were discussing the technology they had an issue with. And so, without even interviewing, he got a job offer.
      (And while it’s not quite the same thing as moving to Switzerland, we are going from Alaska to Silicon Valley, California, so we’re going to have quite a culture shock!)

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