Effective Interviewing Techniques – Letting The Candidate Talk.

job interview

Effective Interviewing Techniques – Letting The Candidate Talk.

When someone moves into a management or a team leadership role there is no doubt that at some stage they will be required to conduct or sit in on interviews. So with no “how to best interview candidates for your team” training  available I would like to offer one simple piece of advice to help you on your way to finding the “best fit” for your team. 


And that is:

Let The Candidates Do The Talking.!


As an interviewer, when it comes to talking in an interview, less is more.  A good rule of thumb is to listen 80 percent of the time. Of course there will be times where you are discussing the role, company, team ,culture and so on but  the key here is to let the candidate be the one who does most of the talking. This is the quickest way to find out what they are all about. 

Get comfortable with silence — don’t feel you have to rush in and ask another question as soon as your interviewee finishes answering a question. You can use this time to finish jotting down notes or coming up with another question based on something your candidate just mentioned.

This also shows your candidate that you’re interested in what they have  to say and that you’re really considering what they’re saying.

Don’t be shy about asking for clarification. If, for example, a candidate mentions they were the project manager for a multi-million dollar project, ask for specifics. 

What was the actual dollar amount? 

How many people did they manage during the project?

How long was the project? 

Did it end on time and under or at budget?

Listening more and talking less allows you to get a good idea of a candidate’s personality and will help you ascertain if they will be a “good fit” for your company or department’s culture. Allowing them more time to speak will benefit all the candidates who have put time and effort into preparing for the interview.