Trying to get the complete picture of someone in a quick hour-long interview can be extremely difficult. Many hiring managers spend most of this time assessing a candidate’s qualifications and work history. So much so that after you’ve left the interview, you might find yourself feeling like you actually know nothing about the candidate at all. This can be especially true with virtual interviews. When interviewing over video chat, you can miss out on some of the natural rapport and back-and-forth conversation that comes so freely in person. If you want to get to know candidates a little better, try asking these three personal interview questions during your next hiring session. Not necessarily to get a specific answer, but to lighten the mood, break down barriers, and get a glimpse into your candidate’s personality.
What Have You Binged Watched Lately?
During COVID-19 lockdowns, many of us invested copious amounts of time bonding with Netflix. Most candidates will have an answer at the ready. It’s important to note that there is NO right or wrong answer to this question (and let your candidate know that!). At best, it’s an opportunity for you to bond over something you’ve both watched; and at worst, it will help your candidate feel more comfortable in the interview to talk about something they enjoy.
Do You Listen to Podcasts? Which Ones Are Your Favorite?
Podcasts have been growing in popularity during recent years. In 2021, 57% of Americans have listened to a podcast. As a result, there is a podcast on just about every single topic on the planet. Again, there is no right or wrong answer here! If a candidate doesn’t listen to podcasts, take the opportunity to share one of your favorites. If they do, take note of which ones they like and why they enjoy them. Is it a silly topic used as a way to unwind after work? Maybe something personal development-related that gets them inspired? Or is it relevant to their passions like sports? No matter what, this personal interview question is a great way to open doors to further conversation.
What’s An Accomplishment You’re Especially Proud Of? (Work-Related Or Not)
When you ask this question, many people’s first instinct is to jump to a professional accomplishment. However, we encourage you to push beyond that. Work-life balance is of the utmost importance to modern candidates, and they undoubtedly have personal achievements they are proud of. Maybe they learned a new hobby, take on home renovations in their free time, or just worked really hard to get where they are. Hearing these personal accomplishments will give you great insights into who this candidate is and what is most important to them!
Need more personal interview question inspiration?
Are you looking for more personal interview questions to ask your applicants? Explore our hiring resources here!