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96 Great Interview Questions to Ask Before You Hire


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Table of Contents


Acknowledgments ix

Introduction: The Parable xi

Putting Candidates at Ease and Building Rapport xxi

PART I: Interview Questions to Identify High-Performance Candidates 1

1: For Openers: Five Traditional Interview Questions and Their Interpretations 3

2: Achievement-Anchored Questions: Measuring Individuals' Awareness of Their Accomplishments 11

3: Holistic Interview Queries: Challenging Candidates to Assess Themselves 19

4: Questions About Career Stability 28

5: Searching for Patterns of Progression Through the Ranks 38

6: Likability Equals Compatibility: Matching Candidates' Personalities to Your Organization's Corporate Culture 47

7: The College Campus Recruit 58

8: Millennials-The Future Generation of Your Workforce 67

9: The Sales Interview: Differentiating Among Top Producers, Rebel Producers, and Those Who Struggle to the Minimums 85

10: Senior Management Evaluations: Leaders,Mentors, and Effective Decision Makers 101

11: Pressure Cooker Interview Questions: Assessing Grace Under Fire 110

12: Generic Interview Questions Known to Challenge Candidates in the Final Rounds of Hire 118

PART II: Selecting Candidates and Making the Offer 127

13: Reference-Checking Scenarios: Administrative Support Staff 129

14: Reference-Checking Scenarios: Professional/Technical Candidates 138

15: Reference-Checking Scenarios: Senior Management Candidates 148

16: Preempting the Counteroffer: Steering Candidates Clear of Temptation 160

17: Making the Offer and Closing the Deal: Questions to Ensure That Candidates Accept Your Job Offers 168

PART III: Key Interviewing, Reference-Checking, and Recruitment Issues 181

18: Staying Within the Law: Interview Questions to Avoid at All Costs! 183

19: Telephone Screening Interviews: Formats and Follow-Ups for Swift Information Gathering 188

20: Getting Real Information from Reference Checks 195

21: Background Checks 200

22: Reinventing Your Company's Employment Application 207

23: Recruitment Brochures: Engaging Invitations and Introductions to Your Company 214

24: Maximizing Your Recruitment Resources 220

Interviewer's Checklist: The 96 Questions 227

Index 233

About the Author 241

About the Author

Paul Falcone ( is a human resources executive in Los Angeles and has held senior-level positions with Nickelodeon, Paramount Pictures, and City of Hope. He has extensive experience in entertainment, healthcare/biotech, and financial services, including in international, nonprofit, and union environments. Paul is the author of numerous bestselling AMACOM and Society of Human Resource Management (SHRM) books, and several of his books have been ranked as Amazon #1 bestsellers in their respective disciplines. He is also a long-term contributor to HR Magazine, a top-rated presenter at the SHRM national conference, and an adjunct faculty member in UCLA Extension's School of Business and Management.


"Paul Falcone's books are real and applicable to the everyday life of Human Resources. They are for the front-line managers on how to lead effectively." -PeopleG2

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