Interview Tips for Small Business

Tips and Resources

A key part of making your small business successful is finding the right employees for the job, but that can be harder than you think sometimes. The key to finding the best candidates for the job lies in your interview process and how you conduct your interviews. If you. Ask the right questions and present your business in the right way, and you’ll find it much easier to attract applicants and weed out ones who wouldn’t be the best fit.

What employee interview process is best for you?

There are many ways you can run an interview and many different types of interviews you can hold. The goals and qualities you are looking for in an employee can be a great way to figure out what type of interview process would be best for you to use. Below is a list of the different types of interviews:

Individual Interview

The individual interview is the most common type of interview that businesses use. This type is one-on-one with you and the applicant, typically in the office. They can range from as little as 30 minutes to over an hour, depending on how in-depth you want to go and how much information you and the applicant are sharing and want to know.

Group Interview

Committee interviews are interviews that have multiple applicants being interviewed altogether. These interviews can involve the applicants working together to solve hypothetical questions you, as the interviewer, ask, help you see how the applicants behave in a social setting, and let you see who has good teamwork skills and who is more suited for solo tasks.

Testing Interview

Testing interviews are what you can use to help you see what skills the applicants have. You can put the applicants in mock situations to test their skills before hiring them, allowing you to see who is the best fit for the job.

For more examples of different types of interviews, Indeed provides a list of different interview types for you to look through and see what fits your needs as a small business owner.

How to prepare

You have your interview process picked and your desired traits in an applicant in mind, but now it’s time to figure out how to best prepare for the interviews ahead. Let's take a look at some of the key points you need to go over and some helpful tips on how to prepare.

Make sure your business looks good for the community. The people applying to work for your small business will be coming in with an outside view of the job based on how the community views it.

Making sure your business has a good reputation with the community it’s part of can ensure that you have applicants who come in with respect for what your business represents. Prepare your questions ahead of time.

Taking time to prepare your questions for the interview will streamline the interview and allow you to make things more cohesive for you and the applicant. Stay in touch with possible candidates. One of the biggest falls people face when interviewing people for small businesses is their lack of effort in following up with candidates. If candidates don’t hear anything back about the interview or if they are left in the dark, there is a risk of them losing interest and searching for jobs elsewhere.

Even if the applicant doesn’t fit what you need at the moment, letting them know they will not be moving forward will help them feel respected, which will ultimately help the reputation of your business grow.

Ezcater has a good article to help provide you with more tips on how to prepare for your employee / employer interviews.

Types of questions to ask during an interview

The questions you ask during an interview are key to figuring out important information about the people applying to work for your business. Still, you need to ensure you are asking the correct questions for what you are looking for and questions you should avoid.

Topics to avoid

When it comes to coming up with questions, there are types that you should avoid. If you are not familiar with Title 7 – make sure to read more on how it works in hiring for your small business.

Below are some of the topics to avoid when interviewing potential employees:

• Religion

• Race

• Politics

• Gender

• Personal Information (children, marital status, etc)

Now, let's get to good questions to ask.

These will vary by position and industry, but here are some ideas.

• Why should we hire you?

• Tell me about a time that you worked as a team to solve a problem?

• Walk me through how you achieved a tight deadline?

• What are your top 2 strengths and weaknesses?

• Describe a time when you had a conflict with a coworker or leader – how did you resolve it?

• What is your dream job?

• What is your most memorable moment in your current role?

• Why are you the best fit for the position?

• What skills do you have that would make you a good fit for this position?

• What challenges do you expect from this role?

• Where do you see yourself in (a specified amount of time)?

• Walk me through a time you failed – what did you learn from it?

• Describe a situation where you led the team to achieve a goal?

• Describe your leadership style with an example to illustrate it.

• Walk me through a time when you exceed a sales goal?

• What accomplishments do you have that you believe to be a highlight of your career?

• Walk me through how you manage scheduling?

• Describe a time you used technology to solve a problem or increase efficiencies?

For more information on maximizing the results of interviews, check out these articles below for more tips and techniques that could help your small business.

Interview Questions for Small Business Owners

Small Business Guide to Hiring

How to Hire Employees for Small Business

Figuring out the interview process that best suits your needs might be hard at first, but with a little practice, you’ll be able to figure out what is best for your business. If you’re having trouble figuring out what process is best for you. Or if you’re looking for ways to help maximize your success in finding good candidates for your business, contact Comprehensive Consulting Solutions for Small Businesses and we’d be more than happy to help!