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10 Interview Questions You Need to Ask

By: Vanderbloemen Search Group

You’ve asked the interview question standards: “What’s your greatest strength?” “What’s your biggest weakness?” “What’s an example of your leadership style? “For job interviewees, answering these questions are second nature. Based on an article on CareerBuilder, we’ve developed ten questions that will require your candidates to break out of their typical interview-style shell.

1. Why are you looking for a new job? This is an open-ended question that leaves room for you to interpret motivation and underlying personality traits.

2. How would your friends describe you? After hearing their answer, take the question a little deeper. “May I call one of your friends?” Depending on the response you get, you will be able to tell if your candidate provided you a truthful response or just one he or she wanted you to hear. By asking this question early on, you’ll let the interviewee know you’re looking for honest answers.

3. What are your two greatest weaknesses? Instead of asking about one, which they’ve likely already rehearsed an answer, this will allow you to see how self-aware the candidate is, and if they are able to demonstrate an opportunity for growth in their weaknesses.

4. How do you cope with stress? Each job has stress and how a candidate handles that stress is vital to your organization. Denial is the worst. Watch out for interviewees who say stress is not an issue.

5. What goals do you have? This question will help you determine if your interviewee plans ahead. If he or she doesn’t have a direct answer (at least one!) chances are making plans is a difficult task. Also ask about previous plans they have set and accomplished (or not) and why for additional insight.

6. Is your work environment important to you? Employees typically have a preference for what kind of work environment helps them be productive. Some prefer professional and quiet environments while others like more open, flexible spaces. If you hire an introvert and your organization is loud and constantly bustling, tension may present.

7. How do you handle conflict? Conflict is another issue that is certain to come up in someone’s work. Ask for an example of how a candidate has handled conflict in the past or present a hypothetical and relevant scenario.

8. How do you stay organized? This open-ended question will show you how a person organizes, rather than allowing them to hand you a positive answer. Although that system may vary, organized people always have a system.

9. When have you gone the extra mile? This gives a candidate the freedom to brag a little bit without feeling out of place while you can measure what the person considers “the extra mile” and determine if it fits well in your context.

10. How do you develop team members and volunteers? Another open-ended question will demonstrate the interviewee’s ideas on delegation and building team members and volunteers. Especially in ministry environments, a holistic approach to growing people is important to not only the organization, but the people it serves.


This article was provided by our church executive search partner, Vanderbloemen Search Group. To learn more about Vanderbloemen Search Group's recruiting services and how they can help you fill your open position, click here. To read more insightful articles on Vanderbloemen's blog, click here.

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