“Interview”- The word in itself is dreadful for quite a lot of people among us. For some playing with numbers or coding for a program is a lot easier but when it comes to sit on the other side of table, people get numb.
As in today’s competitive time, a candidate has to undergo a series of interviews to prove his/her mettle. This entire process sometimes becomes a harrowing experience for the ones who are not comfortable with the very concept of interviews.
As an HR person during interviews you will get to meet people from all walks of life and all shades of personality traits. Sometimes you will find that people who walk into the room are very upfront and confident and at times people are very nervous and scared. For the nervous candidates, interview rooms seems as if they are visiting an operation theater.
Being a people’s person it is very much important that you have that sense of connectivity with the candidate firstly to identify that he is nervous and secondly to make some conscious efforts so as to make him comfortable. Having said that we are not asking you to be biased and develop some soft corner for the person. But being a little considerate towards that scared fellow might help.
Whenever you encounter that one hell of a nervous candidate, this is how you should be dealing with him:
Welcoming and greeting
It all starts from the minute the candidate walks into the room. Being an HR person you will be easily able to spot those signals like trembling while shaking hands, unable to get the hold of instructions, clumsy body language etc. Now when you know that the other person is scared in this zone you should try to welcome or greet him/her in a little casual manner so that the person feels at home. This way you would be able to set a tone for the interview and provide clarity to the candidate.
Striking conversation about general stuff
With too much of pressure to perform better, candidates tend to get nervous. The best way to take their minds off pressure is to ask them some general questions that might vary from who all are there in your family, their hobbies to did you find a lot of traffic or how the government is doing etc.
All these questions surely aren’t related to that job for which the two of you are sitting across the table but once the pressure is off the hook your candidate will feel better and that way perform better.
Make sure that you do not always have a very straight face while interviewing someone. If the candidate is going in right direction you can always acknowledge the same by smiling. Obviously you don’t want to grin ear to ear but smiling often at the right moment can help the candidate and make him forget about his nervousness. Nobody can give their best shot if they see a Hitler’s face across the table.
Develop a rapport
If you can connect with your employees then half of all your battles are already won. When you sit for an interview don’t think that it is just an interrogation round that you are supposed to take rather try and develop a rapport with the candidate. This will not only make the guy comfortable but also help you understand him a lot better.
Giving a fair chance
Just try and not to be judgmental too soon. Giving the other person a fair chance is very important. Even if you feel that this is what you didn’t expect it to be like still give him a considerable chance to finish what he intends to say.
You will find a lot of candidates who would be really nervous to that extent that they will be dropping a glass of water with their trembling hands, push a pull door, ask silly questions etc. The fresher’s crowd are generally the ones who are a nervous wreck. You can cite examples that some xyz person came for an interview and was very much nervous but was a great resource or how you felt in your first interview etc. These examples somehow help the candidates connect and give them more courage.
It’s very much important to understand that resources are just not resources they are humans and we as peoples person need to identify the problem areas and address them. Just because the candidate who walked in is nervous doesn’t really imply that he is incapable of doing a good job. If you comfort him or make him forget how nervous he is he might turn out to be the best fit for the job.