Putting Candidates at Ease Before an Interview
If you want to see your candidate’s true character and personality shine, make them feel comfortable around you! This will give you a taste of how they will function within the company once they settle in and get comfortable.
Ask Ice-Breaker Questions
Ask the candidate a few questions to get them talking without feeling the pressure of having the perfect answer. You could ask them how their drive was or how their day has been. Ask them anything that has almost nothing to do with the job they are interviewing for. Creating no-pressure conversation allows them to settle in and get comfortable.
When the interviewee inevitably asks you, “How are you?” respond honestly. If it has been a busy day, say so! Had a tough commute, but a great day? Tell them! Try to be open and comfortable with them to remind them that you are just a person too! Being real instead of the classic stiff, “good!” will put the candidate at ease.
Offer a (non-alcoholic) Drink
Within reason, try to provide things that the candidate may need during the interview. When you get the candidate situated in the room you are interviewing, offer them water or coffee. This welcomes them in and puts them at ease. If they do not bring a pen or paper with them, it gives them something to hold. If possible, provide tissues in the interview room so the candidate can use them if needed. (There is nothing worse than a “sniffley” nose during an interview.)
Comfort Bonus Tip: Show them around the office when they first arrive and LET THEM KNOW WHERE THE BATHROOM IS! If they must go during the interview, they can excuse themselves without having to shamefully follow you to the bathroom.