Of all the decisions made within companies, hiring is one of the most important. Unfortunately, too often, hiring decisions are made by people with little or no training in how to conduct the interview or assess a candidate. As a result, decisions are based on mostly irrelevant, basic questions such as ‘What are your strengths?’, ‘Why should we hire you?’. Or worse, they are based on intuition.

Companies do not need candidates that interview well. They require candidates that can do their job well. This means that the interviewer needs to know what they are doing and not base decisions on a gut feeling. Learning how to conduct the interview based on candidates’ skills and if they are fit for the company is an essential aspect of the hiring process.

Put Your Intuition in its Place

What do you think would happen if other company sectors functioned without appropriate processes? Could you imagine if your employees used their gut feelings or instincts in solving company issues? For example, an interviewer might decide against a candidate based on their first impression or intuition when, in reality, the candidate might be perfect for the role.

Listening to your intuition can lead to bad hires, poor job performance, and a less diverse workforce. According to research done by BambooHR, about one-third of new hires quit within the first six months because of their attitude or poor performance. It’s not that intuition doesn’t have a place, but that you must know its place. To make the right hiring decision, you need to manage subjectivity and rely on hard data.

Park Your First Impressions

It is not possible to completely ignore intuition, and it’s also not advisable. However, you can acknowledge it and use a practice called ‘Parking your first impression’ to determine if your first impression is accurate. Before the interview starts, write down ‘Yes,’ ‘I don’t know,’ and ‘No.’ Once the interview begins, check one of the options indicating what your first impression is. Now, you can park it and not let it influence you. Otherwise, you will spend the entire interview trying to justify your first impression.

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