Ask less, get more … keep your mouth shut when conducting interviews

Punch line: The more questions you ask, the more you learn about a job candidate, right?


Here is a better strategy.


* * * * *

Excerpted from , “Best Interview Technique You Never Use”

Sometimes, instead of asking questions, the best interviewing technique is to listen slowly.

In Change-Friendly Leadership, management coach Rodger Dean Duncan describes how he learned about listening slowly from PBS NewsHour anchor Jim Lehrer:

“He urged me to ask a good question, listen attentively to the answer, and then count silently to five before asking another question … Giving other people sufficient psychological breathing room seemed to work wonders.”

Once you give candidates a silent hole to fill, they’ll fill it, often in unexpected and surprising ways.

A shy candidate may fill the silence by sharing positive information she wouldn’t have otherwise shared. A candidate who came prepared with “perfect” answers to typical interview questions may fill the silence with not-so-positive information he never intended to disclose.

Edit by JDC

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