Before you can successfully interview an applicant, you need to develop some type of rapport with them. You need to make sure that they are as comfortable and trusting with you as possible, because you want them to be themselves. These four rapport interview questions are designed to do exactly that.
Nervous or intimidated applicants can still be great employees, but may not be comfortable enough to let themselves out. Similarly, applicants do better if they can get into some type of flow, so rapport interview questions provide those easier answers that you can use to make sure they’re freely talking by the time you get to important things.
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The Simple Rapport Interview Questions
- Was it hard for you to find this place?
An easy rapport interview question is one that has an easy answer, like the difficulty a person has finding your location. These types of questions (like “how’s the weather?”) have no wrong answer, yet they are still interesting because the way someone answers could tell you something about them. For example, someone that complains or goes on rants may be negative, and someone that found it easily and describes the process could be indicating something positive.
- Describe your last job for me?
This type of question does provide you value, because you learn something about the applicant. But it’s also a pretty easy question that gives the person a chance to talk about themselves in a positive light. That will get them feeling as though they’re doing a good job answering your questions, and make sure that they’re in the zone for talking about themselves. This is exactly what dedicated rapport interview questions are all about.
- Have you seen any fun movies recently?
You’re not allowed to ask truly personal questions at the interview, but you can sometimes ask a question that is both simple and can result in an unusual answer. While you shouldn’t necessarily judge someone on their movie choices, for example, a person that is willing to talk on and on about a low budget horror flick may be an interesting character. You’ll also get an opportunity to see how they talk about less professional topics.
- Would you like me to tell you about our business first?
It’s also a good idea to note if they’ve done any research themselves about your business, as well as talk yourself so that they get into a flow of conversation and don’t feel too pressured. If you’re talking, chances are they won’t have any problem talking as well.
Building Rapport With the Applicant
While we’ve given reasons that these questions can be informative, the purpose of them isn’t necessarily to learn much about the applicant. Technically you can always learn about the applicant – even from the way they sit in the waiting room – and these questions are no different.
But their real value is that they ease the applicant into the interview. In order to get the best, most accurate responses, anything you can do to build that rapport can have some very real benefits. That’s why it’s so important to ask a few brief, easy rapport interview questions to make sure that you’re helping them get into the groove of answering your questions so that they’re confident enough to give real answers.