11 Vital Interview Questions to Avoid Hiring Mistakes

11 Vital Interview Questions to Avoid Hiring Mistakes

As tough as it is to be an interviewee, much less is said about the difficulties of being an interviewer. How do you, in the short time you have with the candidate, decide if they will be the right person to hire for your company or not? Not hiring correctly can be a costly exercise, so here are 11 important questions to consider for next time.

1. What Makes You Want to Work for Our Company?

This shows whether the candidate has researched your company and has a basic understanding of what your company is about. You want to hire a candidate who is going to be excited about your business and its goals. Having someone motivated off the bat will save you time and energy trying to motivate them later.

2. What Skills/Talents Will You Bring to this Role?

Did the candidate apply just because the role was available? Are they applying because they know this is a role they can undertake and undertake well? This question is an easy way to see how much they understand the role and how their skill set fits within it.

3. Can You Describe Your Current Role?

Does the candidate fully understand their current role? What are their communication skills like? This is a good way to assess both. Having a candidate that can quickly grasp what is expected of them and who can communicate well is important. It will save you time, energy, and money later if you don’t need to provide additional training.

4. Can You Describe a Time You Had a Disagreement with a Boss/Co-Worker? How Did You Handle It?

This is a great question to assess the candidate’s emotional intelligence. Do they generally avoid conflict? How do they describe their conflict resolution style? These are all important considerations when inviting a new personality onto your team.

5. Do You Work Best on Your Own or in a Team?

Does their answer match the requirements of the role? Are they going to struggle in a role that’s more isolated? Do you sense that they won’t thrive if asked to be in a people-focused role? Understanding where the candidate is most comfortable will give you a good sense if they’re right for the role they’re applying for or not.

6. What Makes You Want to Leave Your Current Role?

Do they answer the question confidently? How do they speak about their current employer? This is a good way to assess how likely they are to stay on in the role you are hiring for. It’s also a good way to highlight any potential scruples you may want to assess further in a background check.

7. Where Do You See Yourself in 5 Years?

Are the goals of the candidate in line with the goals of your company? Knowing off the bat if the candidate is excited about the prospect of growing with the company is important. Having someone who already shares the same goals and expectations will prevent conflict and increases the chances that the candidate will stay with you long-term.

8. How Do You Navigate Tough Deadlines?

Does the candidate work well under pressure? Are they the kind of candidate that works best with a strict deadline? These are all important things to know when hiring someone new. If you are concerned that you won’t find a candidate that will be able to cope with the pressures of the role, this is a good way of filtering for that.

9. What is Something About You That’s Not on Your CV/LinkedIn Profile?

What is the candidate like outside of a work context? Do they know themselves well enough to give you a substantial answer on this? This is a good way of assessing if your candidate’s personality will be a good fit for the rest of your team.

10. What is Your Favourite Project from a Past Role?

Does the candidate have any achievements under their belt that apply to the role they’re applying for? How driven are they when it comes to undertaking or completing projects? This is a good question to assess this.

11. Do You Have Any Questions for Us?

Always provide an opportunity for the candidate to ask questions. This helps them gain any info they might still be missing from the interview. It also gives them a chance to get to know the company better so that they can make an informed decision about whether it’s somewhere they want to work. Well-researched questions are also a good indicator of someone who’s serious about the role.


Other than the candidate’s CV, you only have one or two chances to really get to know them in their interview before hiring. To avoid making hiring mistakes, make sure that you ask intelligent questions and that you know the reason behind asking the question. This will give you your best chance of finding the perfect candidate the first time.