96 Great Interview Questions to Ask
by Paul Falcone
AMACOM (second edition), 272 pages, $12.21

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With the glut of information on interviewing available to hiring managers it's good to have a system for maintaining consistent, yet rigorous hiring standards. Falcone used his extensive background as a mortgage company employment manager to compile this list of questions designed to probe, stimulate, and reveal an interviewee's true colors. 96 Great Interview Questions to Ask explores not only the questions themselves, but delves into the why's behind them. Managers who recognize how critical it is to hire right the first time will welcome this illuminating book.

Before he expands to the 96 interview questions, Paul Falcone covers the five most common interview questions with an eye toward analyzing them. The top five are all aligned with the basic "Tell me about your greatest strength/weakness?" query that functions as an icebreaker to get an interviewee comfortable by way of a familiar subject – themselves. He cites red flags to look for in responses that include people badmouthing former bosses or describing fortes that do not match with the open position.

One of 96 Great Interview Questions to Ask's strong suits is that it includes great follow up questions to different responses. Falcone's thoroughness is warranted because of the considerable expense and time sink involved with a bad hire and he includes a "Cost of Mis-Hire Study Results." He cites Peter Drucker's belief that "The ability to make good decisions regarding people represents one of the last reliable sources of competitive advantage, since very few organizations are very good at it." The book's willingness to peel back an applicant's "mask" and not to take statements at face value helps establish a vigilant interviewing strategy for hiring managers.

Decision makers often feel "snake bitten" after they make hires that don't work out. Arming yourself with Falcone's strategies can help restore confidence and refresh you on reference checking and legal issues. Tactics like reverse focusing questions and recognizing the subtle distinctions between self-esteem and arrogance can only enhance your interviewing. Managers looking for new ways to combat superficial or evasive interview responses, and current methods for interviewing future workforce Millennials, will find them in 96 Great Interview Questions to Ask.

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