Close to three quarters in a whole of employers have employed the wrong candidate for the job position. This mistake can be avoided is by having strong and consistent interview process. By asking the right and strategic interview questions, you will be able to hire the right candidate for the job position. That is why we at founderactivity have have bought you strategic interview questions to ask your candidates in 2023 to make the best hiring decisions.

Hiring managers will want to ask the best questions to receive the best answers. It helps them determine if the candidate is right hire for the open position. Preparing for an interview is quite intimidating since there are many thing that goes into knowing the best questions to ask your candidate.

Looking at the candidate’s resume and you are able to prepare a list of questions. Your questions can entail more details on their experiences on the resume. As the interview, you will have to pay attention to several things which will be the reasons to your questions. Whether you are trying to understand their personality or to learn more about their job experiences?

How to prepare

How do you prepare the best strategic interview question to ask your candidate? It can be quite difficult since the majority of the interview questions will be based on the job position, the company, the industry and the potential manager.

Interviews can be quite tricky. As the employer, you will only have a small period of time to assess your candidate and get an accurate idea of who that person is.

You will be assessing the

  • personality
  • experience
  • culture fit
  • future performance

TIP: Keep in mind that your job candidate may already have guessed the common interview questions and will be prepared to answer them strategically.

It will be best to have a bunch of interview questions to ask the candidate you are interviewing. By doing so, you are able to receive answers that are honest in their opinion rather than their rehearsed lines.

The most strategic interview questions to ask candidates are not to ask them tricky questions. You want to ask them interview questions where they are able to answer as candidly as possible. This will help you receive their honest opinion when they do not take time to think about their answer. You should make sure that your candidate does not feel flustered or uncomfortable when answering their question.

These factors will help you to assess your candidate while comparing them to other job candidates.

To gain more insight into how you can prepare for your interview, be sure to check out the video below.

Strategic Interview Questions to ask your candidate

1. What is something about you that is not on your resume?

Candidate resumes are very important to the hiring process. It is the start point of narrowing down the right candidate for the job position. But ultimately will help you decide entirely.

Candidate resumes are essential to your hiring process. Before you even begin interviewing candidates, you first must narrow down the filed by sorting through resumes. Once you have decided who to interview, you then use their resume decide the best interview questions. For instance, their experience may include a post job or an internship that does not relate to their field, but they have the opportunity to explain what they learnt and how it helped to grow.

Or you may share a hobby? When the candidate is assessed, you will be able assess how they speak and behave when they are passionate about something. Strategic interview questions will you understand the candidate much better.

2. What are your goals for yourself this year?

It is critical to find a candidate who has set goals for them. When asking this strategic interview question from your candidate, it will reveal the candidate’s motivations. Having a good understanding of what pushes a candidate is very important. Since they will eventually be an employee that you will need to motivate. Therefore, finding the right answer from your candidate to this question will help you assess whether the candidates align the goals of the company.

3. What is a difficult work situation you have face and how did you overcome it?

This interview question serves itself as a behavioral interview question and it has several purposes. It is crucial to know how the potential employee will handle adversity in the workplace. Mostly, it is always the difficult situations that mold and help candidates grow into professionals.

When interviewing the candidate, pay attention to the candidate response. The words they use and the tone of their voice. Do they fluster when the question was asked or did they respond in a defensive way?

4. What are your strengths?

While this may be a classic interview question, it is a very important one. If you are able to understand someone’s strengths, those that they have self identified, it is best to assess them for the job position. You should consider whether they would be the right fit for the company and role they will be hired for.

The strengths of your candidate are just as important as the weaknesses. When you understand the candidates strengths, you are able to assess how they would align with the job responsibilities that they will handle.

5. What are your weaknesses?

Knowing your candidates weaknesses are a good follow up question to the former. When asking for your candidate’s strengths, it is important to ask them what their weaknesses are. Asking this strategic interview question for your candidate can tell a lot about the candidate. By their words, tone of their voice or body behavior. Do they say that they do not possess any weaknesses? Or do they lose their confidence when answering this question?

The candidate that you should be looking for should be able to answer this question by putting into detail what the weaknesses may be. They should also be able to follow up each weakness to improve and make it a strength.

You can determine whether a candidate is self-aware, adaptive and is able to absorb constructive criticism by hearing their response.

6. What are your goals for self-improvement over the next year?

This strategic interview question will reveal if the candidate is comfortable acknowledging their imperfections and commitment to personal growth. It is critical that you ascertain if they are amenable to change for the better, since this will give you a sense of how they will perform in the future.

For example, say you had a candidate who was great at what he did now, but did not have any plans on improving or growing in his skill set. If you were to hire the candidate, chances are he would only do as good as he currently does – which might not be very good.

This question gives you insight into whether or not the candidate will improve and grow with your company, which is something that you want to see in any candidate.

7. How would your co-workers describe you?

This a very strategic interview question to ask the candidates at the interview. This gives your candidate the opportunity to see themselves in another persons point of view than their own. How they answer this question will also reveal their level of self-awareness. Moreover, this question let the candidate address their personality and how they would share interactions with a colleagues previously.

Depending on how they would describe themselves will help you assess whether they are the right fit for the position you are offering and the right candidate you are looking for.

8. How would you describe your ideal boss?

Well, as the hiring manager, you will be more aware of what the company culture is like. The answer your candidate decides to give to your strategic interview question will help you decide whether the candidate is a right fit for the company or not. The right employee will always thrive in the right environment for them. By using this question, you will be able to assess whether the candidate is the right one to be hired.

9. What is your greatest achievement?

Knowing your candidates greatest achievements are very valuable. What they are proud of in their career gives them a platform to excel in. By giving them the chance to talk about the achievements will give you some insight what makes them passionate. This kind of question is a strategic interview question will help to bring out a candidate’s personality. This can be a good way to get to know your candidate better and help them open up more about themselves.

10. How do you respond to tight deadlines?

Most jobs are involved with deadlines, that is why it is important to ask this particular question for the candidate. Especially, if the job role is a position where it is associated with important deadlines. If you believe that your candidate may be the kind of employee who would turn in their work at the last minute, then this candidate would be right choice.

If the candidate speaks about instances where they have missed deadlines, this would be another factor you need to look out for. Not being able to meet deadlines may not be a deal breaker if the candidate is able to explain how they have learnt from those mistakes to make up to the deadlines they have met previously.

Ideally, the candidate will not only have a proven track record of hitting deadlines, but they will also explain their process of time management.

11. What do you like about your current job?

Is your candidate able to see the positives in a situation? By asking this strategic interview question, your candidate will have the opportunity to speak up about the positive attributes of their current job. This would be a remarkable feature for a candidate to have that works for the company and its culture.

The question will also prove how satisfied they are with their career. This is because if an employee is dissatisfied with their work, the performance that is associated with their work will also decline. With this question, you will also be able to assess if the employee is struggling with burnout that could lead to decreased performance in their work over time.

12.  What is your ideal culture for a workplace?

Every company has its own unique environment and work culture. Just like that, employees have unique requirements when it comes to the culture of the industry they work in. This question can be used to assess whether the candidate would be able to be successful in the company culture.

13.  Is there a skill you wish you had?

Asking this strategic interview question from your candidate has a number of benefits. Firstly it will bring out more about the candidate’s personality. Secondly, this question will allow the candidate to speak about the skills they already possess and what they have developed. This information will help you whether the candidate possess the required skills needed for the job position. And also, it also has the ability to reveal potential weaknesses.

14. What is the most interesting project you have worked on during your career?

To know more about the candidate’s previous work experience and how they feel about it, this is a strategic interview question to ask. You will gain insight on what the candidate will prefer to work on and how they will enjoy their assigned job responsibilities. Any employees who likes their work, will always be more engaged with what they do. This is also leads to employee to be more productive.

If the post offers any flexibility or independence, you might use this time to sell the prospect on the position. Inform them that the selected applicant will be able to determine priorities and develop projects.

15. Why do you want to work at our company?

There are few questions to know about your candidate’s enthusiasm for the job compared to another one will help you determine whether the candidate is the right for the company. You’ll get a good sense of what this individual understands about the organization and how interested they are in the role.

16. Tell us about our company

According to statistics, approximately 50% of hiring managers would reject job seekers who do not know enough about the organization. This strategic interview question is an excellent way to see if your potential employee has performed their homework on your company. If you ask them to talk about what they know about your organization, they will soon show whether or not they performed their research. If they did not investigate your organization, it might indicate that they are not actually interested in the employment.

17. Why are you leaving your current job?

While it may appear inquisitive, it is important to know why a candidate is looking for a new position. If they are likely to encounter anything that led them to quit their previous employment in another company, this candidate may not be ideal for the job position. Use this question to ensure that you are hiring someone who is committed to the long term.

18. What do you predict will be the new challenges that will face our industry?

You want an employee that is knowledgeable and knows industry trends. It can effectively convey their knowledge. The candidate’s response to this strategic interview question may reveal how well they understand their sector.

19. Can you share a time when you were wrong?

It is crucial to ask someone to relate a moment when they were wrong. Most candidates do not frequently expect to be asked this question. Therefore, their replies are more genuine. Every candidate can make errors but the capacity to admit them and alter how we operate in the future is a very valued attribute in any job.

20. If you were to start your career over, what would you change?

Reflection is a highly effective activity. It aids in identifying areas for improvement and transformation. If your candidate has a well-prepared response to your strategic interview question, it demonstrates that they routinely assess themselves to recognize what needs and can use more improvement.

21. What is your method for learning a new skill?

This question is a strategic interview question if your role demands you to learn new abilities on a regular basis or involves any on-the-job training. Assessing their skills and their strategies for acquiring new abilities might help you determine how self driven the candidate is.

22. What is your approach to workplace conflict?

While not everyone has dealt with professional conflict, this question might help you find any previous experiences that your candidate has come across that may need to be shared during your interview. Aside from that, having personnel with practical problem-solving abilities is essential for every team. Check to see whether a candidate’s problem-solving skills are suitable with your team and company culture.

23. What piece of critical feedback do you receive most often?

If the candidate you are interviewing is honest, this may be highly helpful in determining any issues with the candidate. It may also demonstrate how they tried to overcome previous mistakes, inadequacies or challenges.

24. Who inspires you?

This question reveals what motivates your candidate. This can be quite informative about their underlying reasons for their career choices and their personalities. Use this question strategically during the interview to learn more about the candidate. Identify their areas of weakness and determine whether their motives align with those of the job position and company.

25. What are your long-term career goals?

This strategic interview question is significant since it indicates the candidate’s level of ambition. While the candidate may state what their eventual goals are, they should also outline how they want to gradually obtain greater responsibilities within the organization. You want someone who understands that advancement requires hard effort and perseverance.

This strategic interview question also indicates whether or not your organization will be able to provide the candidate with the items they desire in the long run. You want their future ambitions to line with your company’s so that they would be glad to stay with you in the long term.

26. Please share a time when you set a goal for yourself and achieved it.

By asking this strategic interview question from your candidate will give you insight into their goals. You will be able to see how they adhere to the goals they have set. This will also allow their ambitious and dedication skills to shine through. Setting their own goals also indicate that they possess well developed organizational skills and they are looking forward to career growth. When this question is asking, the candidate can explain to you how the goals and objective are met and what motivates them to perform well.

27. How do you influence others to work with you?

When you ask this question, not only it is a strategic question, it can also be considered as a behavioral question. As their potential employer, you may want to know how collaborative the candidate is and how they may influence the workforce at the workplace to accomplish goals. You can ask them for examples of what projects they have done, how did the team collaborate and get along, leadership style they used and what were the results.

28. What ‘word’ do you think describes you?

A great strategic personality question by far is asking your candidate “what word describes you?”. This question is not expected by most candidates. Therefore, you are able to analyze their behavior and analyze as they answer this question. Since they will not be prepared to answer this question and their answer will be required because it is an open-ended question. Depending on what word your candidate uses to describe themselves will help you assess whether they are the right fit for the company.

29. What do you value in your work relationships?

No candidate walks into an interview claiming to be a bad team player. This question makes the candidate question themselves and speak. You should also be curious about the connections they choose to discuss about such as supervisors, peers and clients. The response will give you genuine insight into how they interact with others in the workplace.

30. How you run meetings?

A excellent candidate will have a toolbox full of tactics and tips that they have learned over time to assist them complete the task at hand. Because no single tool is appropriate for every purpose or requirement, the candidate should demonstrate that they are willing to experiment and learn from others about what works best to obtain desired results. This would be a great strategic interview question to ask your candidate to further assess their skills.

31. Do you work best alone or on a team?

What type of job will the candidate do if he or she is hired? This strategic interview question determines if they are fit to the sorts of assignments they will be given. Someone who prefers solitary work and lengthy spans of undisturbed time may not flourish in a role that requires teamwork or multitasking, whether they work remotely or in the office. This is an important question to ask your candidate prior to the hiring process.

32. What led you to your latest role?

This is a great strategic interview question for several reasons. For starters, it helps you understand how the applicant got to where they are now, whether it was through personal connections, a recommendation, or working from the bottom up. This also provides you a strong understanding of managers since you may learn how and why they wish to advance their careers into leadership positions. Furthermore, this inquiry frequently reveals if the applicant was promoted once or more throughout their prior employer’s tenure.

33. If you are behind schedule and someone asks for you help, how do you respond?

This demonstrates what the candidate’s priorities are in a difficult scenario. Do they prioritize their own issues over those of others?

While there may not be a universally correct answer to this issue, as an employer, you must choose what is most important to you. This particular strategic interview question may disclose a lot about how this individual might be as a coworker.

34. Describe the best boss you ever reported to.

This is a strategic interview question since it reveals information about previous relationships. The hiring manager may acquire a better understanding of the candidate’s communication abilities, work style, and possible cultural fit by emphasizing the applicant’s personality and work patterns.

Follow up with the candidate with questions about what made the connection work—was it the personality, performance, or the supervisor who was a cheerleader? Is the applicant more interested in autonomy than in handholding or are they motivated by a shared desire to achieve company goals?

35. How would you deal with an upset customer or client?

While this question is not applicable for every profession, it may be quite useful in client-facing roles. In these situations, you need to know that your applicant can work under pressure and assist a client with a problem.

36. A disruptive line of questioning

When it comes to strategically interviewing your candidate with questions, a disruptive line of questions can be asked. You will be able to assess how they would handle the situation in a nervous situation when you keep throwing questions at them. The questions mentioned below may look simple but they may not be to a candidate when they asked on the spot. Questions like:

  • How much is eight times nine?
  • Can you write cursive?
  • How long can you go without checking your cell phone?
  • Name a state you have never visited?
  • Name three cities located in that state?

37. Can you teach me something in 5 minutes?

Strategic and technical questions can be combined in order to receive the best answer from your candidate. It allows your candidate to demonstrate their skills in a on-the-spot moment. This gives you insight to the knowledge the candidate possess and how they use it. It is always much better to assess their professional skills than their personal ones. Taking into consideration which skill set they will need while working for the job position.

I was at a job interview today when the manager handed me his laptop and said, “I want you to try and sell this to me.” So I put it under my warm, walked out of the building and went home.
Eventually he called my cell phone and said, “Bring back my laptop!”
I said, “$200 and it’s yours.”

38. What was the color of the receptionist’s shirt?

This particular question may sound silly but you will be surprised how valuable this question may be. As you wonder why it is an important question to ask your candidate, it is a very strategic question. Most often, candidates are nervous for their interview that tend to observe less. Using this fact, you can assess your candidate as how much detail do they pay attention to even under pressure.

39. Why should we hire you?

This strategic interview question differs from others in that it requires job hopefuls to identify what sets them apart from the strong competition in the job market. Look for individuals that recognize their own distinct skills and aren’t just telling you what they think you want to hear.

40. Do you have any questions for me?

By asking this, you open the floor to any questions the candidate may have for you.

They will frequently inquire about the day-to-day employment, the interviewer or even the company’s development potential. Be ready for a curveball if they throw one! If you can’t answer the question right now, volunteer to do so later by certainly following it up.

They should have prepared many questions to ask. They should utilize their remaining time with you to pick their most critical inquiries of the interview and the company. A strong applicant will want to learn as much as possible throughout the interview.

While it is always a negative indicator if the applicant has no questions at the end, do not count them out completely. Did they pose a question as a natural part of the dialogue earlier in the interview? Do they check their notes and indicate you’ve already answered their questions? When contemplating a non-answer to this final question, take a minute to consider the entire interview.

Why is it important to ask strategic interview questions from the candidate?

You must first ask yourself certain questions in order to identify what you want or need to ask as an interviewer from the candidate. This will help you have a glimpse of what the ideal candidate may look like that fits the job position.

Prepare a list of questions that you need the answers to that is required for the job role.

  • What role are you attempting to fill? Consider the hard and soft talents required for this position.
  • What qualities do you want to observe in the applicant you’re about to interview? Consider things that their CV does not include.
  • What kind of personality would be successful in this role? Consider your company’s culture. Who can contribute?

Once you have the answers to these questions, you will be well on your way to picking the greatest interview questions for the unique job position available at the company.

Next, look over the candidate’s resume or any other material they have given you thus far and base some recruiting questions on that. Were they a part of anything special? Do they have any special abilities that you’d like to learn more about?

With these individual specifics in mind, you may create a bunch of appropriate strategic interview questions to ask your candidate.

Tips to confidently face the interview

While this article will cover some general strategic interview questions tips for the best way to prepare for an interview. The more prepared you are, the more likely it is that your answers will be well received.

40 Strategic Interview Questions to Ask Candidates For An Effective Interview

Ask Specific Questions Related to the Role

Once you’ve narrowed down your list of potential employers, take some time to look at their website and any other material they may have provided about themselves. This can give you a better idea of what the company values and how they treat their employees.

Once you’ve done your research and are feeling confident about your prospects, start preparing for the interview itself. Even though some interviews can be conducted over email or phone, most will require an in-person meeting where you’ll get a chance to speak with someone from the company. As such, it’s important that you make a good first impression through both your words and actions. Therefore, do not be afraid to ask specific questions that will help you determine whether or not they are suitable for the position that is being offered to them.

Ask the Same Questions to Every Candidate

By asking the same set of strategic interview question from every candidate that is being interview is the only way to ensure that you are able to make a fair decision. If the candidates are asked different questions, all of the candidates will not have the same information. Some of the candidates will find it easier to answer some of the questions while other candidates will struggle. Hence, you will only be able partially assess the candidates that you are interviewing.

Choose Open-Ended Questions

Always ensure to choose open-ended questions for your candidates rather than close-ended questions. This helps you learn more about the candidate during the interview time you have allotted for them. It will also help you understand your candidate more if they are able converse candidly.

Therefore, phrasing your strategic interview questions for the candidates in an open-ended way is important.

40 Strategic Interview Questions to Ask Candidates For An Effective Interview

In conclusion, everyone finds interviews difficult. Both the candidates and hiring managers must prepare ahead of time and portray themselves in the best light. Candidates are frequently concerned about landing a decent job, and hiring managers are frequently concerned about finding the right candidate for the position.

Reduce tension between you and the candidate by preparing ahead of time. You might feel more certain that the interview process will be beneficial if you use a list of strategic interview questions to ask candidate.

The road to success is always under construction.

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