The Big Question All Hiring Managers (or recruiters) Need to Ask

As a hiring manager, you probably have a laundry list of great questions that you ask candidates, ranging from, “Why did you leave your last company?” to “If you were stranded on an island and could only have three things, what would they be?” However, one questionall hiring managers need to ask and don’t is this: Do you WANT to do the job?

Even the best hiring managers and professional recruiters typically do not determine this very important fact during the interview process. This can cause serious problems down the line, once the candidate has been brought on board, which results in the new hire resigning after a couple of months. The new hire will then make the case, “I didn’t know that I had to do these things--you only asked me if I knew how to do them. I haven’t done these things myself in many years.”

So why don’t hiring managers and professional recruiters ask this question, thereby saving them loads of time and energy in the hiring process? There are two primary reasons:

1. They never thought about asking it.

2. They are afraid that it might scare the candidate away. 

Re #1, it may seem like such an obvious question that many interviewers fail to ask it. But that doesn’t mean it’s not crucial! As a hiring manager or recruiter, you may think to yourself, 'hey, if this guy has put all this effort into applying for this position, then of course he wants to do the job!' However, he may not be aware of all the specifics involved with the position. He may think the job requires 70% of time with people and 30% crunching numbers in an office, but really, the job actually requires about 50/50. Then, he doesn’t seem so interested in the position anymore! Avoid this ambiguity by clearly defining the role, which you can do with the Peak Performance Profile (P3), Excelsior’s version of a job description. Learn more here:

In regards to scenario #2, isn’t it better to scare the candidate off in an interview rather than after a couple of months, once you've invested all that time and money in hiring him? During the interview process, let candidates know what they will have to do, what resources they will or won’t have to do the job, who they will be working with, and approximately how much time they will be spending on these items. This allows them to make an informed decision about whether or not they WANTto do the job.