These days, effectively interviewing food & beverage professionals can seem more like a game of chess than a question-and-answer session.

On the one hand, you need to ask questions that help you break through a candidate’s interview facade – and see how well he thinks on his feet.

On the other hand, it’s a job seeker’s market.  Throughout the interview process, you must show a food & beverage professional the WIIFM (what’s in it for me?).  Ideally, your candidate should leave the interview convinced that the opportunity with your organization is his best career move, and that you’re truly interested in his long-term professional development.

How do you complete these dual strategic objectives?

As experts in executive food & beverage recruiting, we at Kinsa are here to help.  Today, we’re sharing some of our favorite interview questions that engage and promote discussion.  Customize these questions and use them in your next interview to evaluate a candidate’s potential fit within your organization:

  1. Tell me about your career path to this point.  How did you wind up in your most recent position?  This question may seem informational on the surface; however, it will also reveal important details about a candidate’s strengths/weaknesses, career aspirations and voluntary/involuntary career moves.
  2. What needs to change at your current company for you to consider staying put? -or-  Why have you chosen to pursue this opportunity with us?  These questions create an “opportunity gap” in the candidate’s mind, by juxtaposing the shortcomings of his current position with the advantages your current opening offers.
  3. How would this opportunity help your future career progression or help you build your resume?  This question forces a candidate to think about your opportunity in terms of the long-term career benefits it offers.  It also garners lots of goodwill from a candidate, because it shows that you’re putting his needs ahead of your own.  At the same time, the question helps you gain deeper insight into how a candidate thinks about and manages his career.
  4. If you accepted this position, how would you explain that to a potential employer five years from now?  Another selfless inquiry, this question requires the candidate to think on his feet and fit together the pieces of his career’s “big picture” – right in front of you.

Once you understand the answers to these questions, it will be time for you to do a little thinking on your feet.  Find ways to address aloud how you see the candidate’s selection criteria and career values applying to your company.  For example, if your opportunity seems more like a lateral move for the individual than a promotion, voice the concern and ask for the candidate’s assessment.  This type of discussion is straightforward, engaging and selfless – and it will leave your candidate thinking: “Wow, this company is really interested in helping me meet my professional goals.”

Kinsa Group – A Better Way to Hire Food & Beverage Professionals

As a national food & beverage recruiter, The Kinsa Group has the resources and interviewing expertise to deliver executive and c-level food & beverage professionals with the skills, experience and personality to thrive in your organization.  We use professionally trained interviewers, a wide array of assessments, thorough background checks and satisfaction guarantees to ensure the long-term success of your next hire.

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