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While lots of things can go wrong, the biggest mistake you can make is to not plan adequately for the interview. Preparation is everything and this extends to interview questions and structure.
An interview isn’t a casual chat, and while you will want the candidate to feel as relaxed as possible, it’s important you still have a steer on the direction of your questions. Here are three tips on how to structure your interview questions.
1. Start broad
We recommend that you open with a pattern of broad, general questions. This will allow the interviewee to answer with content they might have already prepped, and that they feel is important. Essentially, all interviewees will come with a number of key points they want to make. Allow them the space to make these. Indeed, you might want to expand on them or extrapolate further. Either way, it is important for your candidate to make these points.
2. Once the candidate has settled a little, move into more focused specifics
Once you have heard the information the candidate has prepped to share with you in the broad questions, you can start to focus on specifics. The interviewee will be more relaxed because they have said the key points they wanted to, and this will help them to answer your more specific questions with more confidence.
3. Finish on the closed “yes/no” questions
A closed question, or one you can answer with a single word, isn’t great for earlier on in the interview. However, this isn’t to say they don’t have any place in the interview. As they can somewhat close the natural flow of conversation anyway, we recommend leaving them until the end to wrap things up.