Behavioral Based Interviewing
Behavioral based interviewing is a mainstream method of job interviewing developed by industrial psychologists in the 1970s. This mode of interviewing involves asking interview questions based on past employment experiences of the potential employee. The responses for the behavior-based questions are usually indicative of a candidate’s professional conduct. The employers will use this method of interviewing to analyze an applicant’s past behaviors and experiences in job/task related situations, which will determine the candidate’s potential for success.
The underlying assumption of behavioral based interviewing is that it will accurately predict the future performance of an employee as it is based on past performances in similar circumstances. Research indicates that while traditional interviewing is 10% predictive of an employee’s future performance, the behavioral based interviewing is 55% predictive of his future performance and behavior in certain situations. This is because the behavioral based interviewing provides the employer with an objective set of facts as opposed to the traditional methods of interviewing (Hansen, 2009).
Benefits of behavioral questions
Behavioral based interviewing questions help prove to the employer that the candidate has taken certain actions that have delivered productive results. The questions can also accurately predict a candidate’s future job performance as well as help in establishing a pattern of behavior based on the candidate’s responses (Bliga, 2011). Experts have also established that behavioral questions are the best for inexperienced interviewers because they do not require a lot of organizational and psychological knowledge. Finally, the companies that invest in formulating the best behavioral questions attract the best candidates, who in turn make the company a desirable place to work.
One major disadvantage of asking these open-ended questions is that the respondent might begin to ramble and the interviewer loses control of the interview. There is also the risk that an inexperienced interviewer might ask leading questions, which will distort the results of the interview. There are also instances whereby the candidate does not feel comfortable in answering the questions as they might seem too personal. Other disadvantages include the fact that past behavior cannot be considered 100% indicative of future behavior. There is also the possibility that a cunning candidate will make up a situation or base his/her answers on the interviewer’s expectations.
Response to Behavioral Based Questions
1. In my previous job, I decided that it would be best to block access to social media websites in the office so as to increase the productivity of the workforce. The decision was very unpopular in the office, but with the support of the executive staff I managed to calm my fellow workers down and block the websites.
2. I had to convince a team to work on an urgent project that required them to work overtime for two and a half months. To make matters worse, the project was very dull. As an incentive, I offered the team overtime pay, and extended their leave days.
3. There was a time when one of my co-workers was convinced that I was given a raise unfairly and she was the one who deserved it. I asked her to go through the projects that I had done, and if she was still convinced that I got a raise unfairly then I would reject the raise. After reviewing my work, she was convinced that I earned the raise through hard and creative work.
4. There are several instances that I have gone beyond the call of duty in my previous job. My workmate was assigned a marketing campaign that she was ill equipped to handle. She asked me for my help and I volunteered to stay behind and help her with the project during the nights for more than 4 months. I was not paid overtime and she got all the credit once the project was complete.
Transforming traditional interview questions to behavioral based interview questions
Traditional Interview Questions
Behavioral based interview questions
1. What are your strengths
I. Present to me a situation whereby you had a positive influence on others and their actions.
2. What would you do if you were having difficulties with another employee on your project?
II. What was the toughest group that you have had to work with? How did you win them over?
3. Tell me about yourself
III. Describe how one of your overwhelming personality traits has helped you carry out a task successfully in the past.
4. What are your weaknesses?
IV. Give an example of an incident whereby you had failed the task and how you improved your performance
5. How did you like your last job?
V. Give an example of when you had gone beyond your call of duty at work
6. What would you do if someone asked you to overlook something in your project?
VI. Give an example of when you had to keep from speaking because you did not think you has sufficient information
7. How do you deal with making difficult decisions?
VII. Tell us one of the most difficult decisions you have ever made in your previous work experience
8. How would you deal with office policies that you do not agree with?
VIII. Give an example of when you were forced to comply with a policy at work that you did not agree with
9. What would you do if you had too many tasks to handle at the same time?
IX. Describe to us a specific example on how you prioritized and scheduled tasks in the office that competed for your time
10. Do you consider yourself a leader?
IX. Give us an example of how you exhibited your leadership skills
Bliga, F. (2011, May 23rd). Behavioral interviewing vs. Traditional interviewing. Retrieved on 30/11/2015 from https://www.applicantstack.com/blog/2011/behavioral-interviewing-vs-traditional-interviewing
Hansen, K. (2009). Behavioral job interviewing strategies for job seekers. Retrieved on 30/11/2015 from http://www.quintcareers.com/behavioral-interviewing/