Interviewing Introverts. #NewToHR

Interviewing Introverts

Some of us were gifted with the ability to send out pulsing waves of energy and good feelings when being interviewed.

While this may seem like a great quality to have during a face to face meeting, this may cause an interviewer to take the more introverted potentials as ‘less capable and easily forgotten‘.

Because of this overlooked bias, you could be selling your company short by completely missing some of the best talent available in the hiring pool. Most people have some form of introversion, and as a people professional, it is up to you to come up with a hiring process that levels the playing field as much as possible.

Before a plan can be made, it’s is of the utmost importance to first understand the qualities that make up the introverted candidate.

  • In general, they are not prone to small talk because it is considered to be irrelevant to the situation.
  • They can also take longer to answer a question, preferring to sit in silence to compose an answer.
  • Their answers tend to be much shorter and to the point since, like the small talk, added fluff is irrelevant.
  • Finally, they fall into the habit of underselling their capabilities by not acting as excited as you would assume them to be.

Knowing this, you can now build a hiring practice that is fair to both sides of the coin.

Always build the process around the right questions.

You have a limited time to get the information you need from the interviewees, and it does no one any good to dance around red herrings. If they answer quickly and to the point, all the better.

Similarly, make sure the entire process is completely structured and planned out from beginning to end. This will give you the means necessary to assess each applicant’s capabilities accurately and concisely while avoiding hiring based on feelings.

Aside from structure, there are also a few more aspects you may want to consider.

Some companies send out information packets that go over what the interviewee should have prepared for their scheduled appointment. This will make sure they can gather their evidence and act their best when they finally meet with you. If, when you meet, they have shorter answers than you would like, don’t be afraid to ask for elaboration. Unless prompted, introverts will merely give you exactly what you asked for!

Candidates cannot and should never be judged solely on the performance they give. The corporate world is not a stage.

Instead, it is a vast organism made up of introverts and extroverts alike.

So long as they are talented and help push the company toward its goals, they are an asset. Remember this when designing your hiring process.

Work to minimize and extroversion biases it may have by creating a sense of structure and preparation for the introverts you are bound to meet with.

© New To HR


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