Candidate Behavioral Interviewing

Behavioral Interviewing is a style or type of interviewing developed by industrial psychologists to identify patterns from a candidates past history, in order to make assessments about a candidates likely future performance. ePraxis uses behavioral interviewing throughout our candidate screening process. Simply put, a candidate’s past behavior and experience is more important than almost anything a candidate can say themselves about their future. Like getting “A’s” in school, shows a high standard of performance and personal expectation of performance, and these same candidates are likely to continue to do “A” quality work in their new position. Though it must be recognized that no one metric or observed behavior can be considered alone. A candidate might be book smart but street stupid – meaning, they might have great academic ability but have little ability to apply this same strength to practical matters involving judgment.

Examples of behavioral interview questions include:
– Tell me about a time in your past when you were seriously frustrated with either your co-workers or supervisor at work? What was the situation? what was the frustration costing you? How did you address the situation with your co-workers or supervisor? What did you learn from this experience?
– Tell me about a time in your past when you demonstrated great commitment and follow-through with an important goal that you set? What was the goal? Why was it important to you? And how did you achieve your success?
– Tell me about your greatest achievement in your career; what was it, why was it important, what impact did your achievement have on the team or business?
– These and many other examples provide a glimpse into a candidates past, their decision-making, performance, and level of playing. The examples also tell our selection committee at what level a candidate plays; do they make great or minimal impact at work? Are they engaged and take charge, or do they play as a supportive member of a team, etc.

ePraxis has found that behavioral interviewing is much more reliable in prediction of a candidates future likelihood of success, than asking hypothetical questions about what a candidate might do in a certain situation. At ePraxis we not only listen to a candidate’s answers to questions, we review their behavioral and work history, and we look for patterns of behavior that are demonstrated throughout a candidate’s life. Detection of behaviors, motivations, and core competencies is identified in client applications, communications, homework assignments, interview results, and our psychometric tests such as the TriMetrixDNA assessment.

In summary, a candidate’s actions and past history speaks so loudly that frequently we cannot hear their words in the interview, though we listen intently to find meaning and markers to aid in our selection process. Indeed, what a candidate has done in the past is a much more important indicator of behavior than what a candidate says they will do in the future. Like a banker considering lending a loan to a small business that has had repeated quarterly financial losses, the evidence of repeated losses is a marker or pattern and weighs heavier in the bankers decision-making than the positive views of the small business owner that somehow believes that this quarter is different than his past.