This is a short post this week. I want
to share with the hiring managers out there a tactic one of my clients has
implemented during the hiring process and one you may want to consider. While
my client uses this tactic primarily when interviewing candidates for sales
positions, you could certainly apply this approach to all of your interviews.
It is quite simple and yet so telling. Here you go…
When the candidate arrives at your
office, intentionally keep them waiting for a few minutes, and provide them a
relaxing environment to wait. Take their coat and hang it up, get them water or
coffee, and let them know they just need to wait a few minutes. The likelihood
is the candidate will immediately reach for the cell phone. It has become
second nature whenever we’re given a few minutes of “down time”.
When it is time to begin the interview, have
your own cell phone in your hand (on silent) and walk the candidate to your conference
room, office or wherever the meeting will take place. Have a table with a
drawer, a file cabinet, or a desk in the room, anything where you can tuck your
own cell phone away during the interview. Prior to sitting, announce, “oh by
the way, we have a policy of no cellular distractions during meetings, so if
you don’t mind I’d like for you to place your cell phone with mine in this
drawer, that way we’re not interrupted until the end of our meeting”. Then put
your own cell phone away and gesture for the candidate to do the same.
That’s it – end of story. Well, sort of.
Here’s what will happen. You will
immediately gauge the comfort level of the candidate by removing one of the
most addictive devices of all time You’ll require the candidate to communicate
openly without distraction, making eye contact. No vibrating texts in their
pocket. And, some candidates will be perfectly fine, comfortable, professional
and a delight to interview. Others will lose their “security blanket” and be fidgety
the entire time. They will be uncomfortable. They will be distracted wondering
what is happening inside their digital world. They will become anxious.
Such a simple tactic can be oh so
telling of how the candidate can handle themselves in real one-on-one
situations. They either can or the can’t; and generally speaking there’s no in
Give it a try, I know I will.