There is a common perception that interviews are about putting the best face forward for both the practice and the potential employee. While it is natural to want to make a good impression, it is more important to make a genuine connection. Here are a few tips to make the most of meeting a candidate. 

    1. Ask open-ended questions. For example, don’t ask, “Do you like our city so far?” Instead, ask, “What attracts you to our region?”
    2. Make your questions count. Here are a few useful questions to get to know a candidate better:
      • What aspect of the profession do you find most rewarding? 
      • What about our practice do you find particularly interesting? 
      • What is the ideal workplace environment that would best allow you to thrive? 
      • What aspect of your profession would you like to explore? 
      • What is the biggest professional challenge you have faced, and how did you overcome it? 
      • What aspect of the profession is your least favorite? Why?
      • How do you want to improve yourself over the next year?
      • How would you go about establishing credibility and relationships with our staff?
    3. Mix it up. It’s okay if you throw an utterly unexpected question at them, such as, “Would you rather have a dog that knew how to talk or a cat that knew how to wash dishes?” Or, “How many grains of sand do you think there are on Laguna Beach?” The purpose is not the answer but to understand how they process unexpected questions.
    4. Keep it conversational. Naturally, both the interviewer and the person being interviewed might be nervous. Do your best to make them feel welcome and at ease. By all means, do everything possible to make it a conversation, not an interrogation. You should balance listening and talking. Encourage candidates to ask about your professional journey, your ambitions for your practice, and where you hope to see them in the future.
    5. Go with your gut. Finally, put proper weight on the interview. It’s important, and you should trust your intuition concerning a potential fit. But some great employees are bad at meetings, and some marginal employees are great at making a first impression. Take some time to review your notes from the interview and visualize them working at your practice. If something seems off, consider setting up a follow-up meeting or talking to additional candidates before making a decision. Just don’t take too long – good candidates are hard to come by, so if you think you’ve found an all-star, get a contract in front of them as soon as you’re able before they move on to the next opportunity.

Practice Management Connections can help you navigate the complexities of your next hire. We pre-screen potential practice leaders to be sure they are genuinely interested in your position and are a good fit for your needs. When you have an opening, we help you streamline the process and can save you thousands of dollars through our proven approach to recruiting. Call us to get started on finding your next great hire!

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