The right choice

These are by far some of my favourite job interview questions. Do use them if you are so inclined.

I use them at every opportunity and I thoroughly enjoy listening to the responses.

1) Please explain to me the difference between Average & Standard Deviation like I am 5 years old?

You will be unpleasantly surprised at how effectively this one can trip up even the most seasoned Six Sigma professionals.

Give it a try. It isn’t as easy as it comes across at first glance.

The point here is that simply knowing something like the back of your hand won’t cut it if one can’t communicate it clearly in layman’s terms.

2) Please give me an example of when you delegated a task to a direct report?

Assuming the question applies to the candidate, the odds are uncomfortably in favour of an example that will describe Dumping, not Delegating.

3) Please tell me about a mistake that you made thrice?

It takes an honest, bold and near ego-free person to own up to that one.

4) On a particularly costly employee error resulting in a product defect, our investigations reveal that it is the exact same employee committing the error every time. What would you suggest we do?

If the responses with follow-up questions doesn’t head towards error-proofing the process, it reveals a lot about the candidate. Remember, this candidate could be part of management someday.

5) I see that you’ve applied for a managerial position for the first time in your career. That’s rather admirable. I must tell you though that we can probably only afford to pay you as much as you earn in your current job. I hope you’re still interested?

Assuming this question applies to the candidate, both the verbal response and the non-verbal cues will give you a crystal clear indication of whether you have a diamond in the rough or not.

6) Do you suppose all NFL players; especially the famous ones; have a girlfriend?

This one really ought to give the candidate a fair shot at “out-of-the-box” thinking.