Job interviews can be nerve-wracking. Despite preparing thoroughly and anticipating potential questions, unexpected ones can arise. To help you excel in your next interview and secure your desired job, we're sharing some valuable tips. These are seven insider techniques that employers use during interviews to assess your suitability for the position.
7 Tricks Employers Use To Test You During Job Interviews
It would be great if job interviews were always simple and straightforward, with straightforward questions about your background and what you can bring to the role. However, job interviews are not always so clear-cut. Employers don't only want to know if you are qualified for the position, they also want to know if you will fit well with the team and share similar values. They're not only assessing your skills but also trying to understand your personality.
Therefore, they often utilize subtle methods to determine this. Many of these techniques go unnoticed. But, we are aware of them and are providing you with the inside information. Keep these in mind when you attend your next interview and you will be able to ace it.
1. The Coffee Trick
Have you ever been offered a drink during a job interview, such as coffee, tea, juice, soda, or water? While it may seem like a simple act of politeness, there could be another intention behind it. The interviewer may be observing how you handle the cup during and after the interview.
Will you inquire about what to do with the cup after use, or dispose of it without being asked? Will you take it to the kitchen, wash it, and put it away without being prompted? Or, will you leave it for someone else to handle? The Managing Director of Xero Australia, Trent Innes, has discussed how and why he employs this technique. He emphasizes that it's about hiring individuals who share the same values and it starts with small things such as maintaining a clean kitchen.
"We really want to make sure we have people that have a sense of ownership," he explained. "Culture comes from the ground up."
2. The Waiting Game
The waiting game, where the interviewer purposely makes you wait longer than your scheduled interview time, is a tactic used in stress interviews. Stress interviews are designed to put candidates in stressful situations to observe their reactions. Employers want to see how you handle stress and how you think and make decisions under pressure.
Employers understand that it's natural for candidates to feel nervous heading into an interview. By keeping you waiting for a prolonged period, for example 10 minutes, 15 minutes, 30 minutes or more, they can test how you react to the situation. This is a controlled scenario in which you have no power over and it is controlled by someone in a superior position. How you react to this situation? Will you be composed and collected when you finally get to the interview stage, or will you be flustered, stressed, or even appear a bit irritated? Your reaction to this situation will reveal a lot about you to the potential employer.
3. Aggressive Behavior
This is typically through the use of confrontational questioning, but can also be in the way the interviewer poses the question. For example, the interviewer may speak loudly when asking difficult questions such as.
This method of questioning is intended to make you feel uncomfortable. The interviewer wants to observe how you react to pressure and if you can remain composed and think critically when someone is angry or asking tough questions in a job setting. If you can handle it during the interview, it's likely that you can handle it in real-life work situations as well.
4. How Rude
Another tactic used in stress interviews is when the employer is being impolite or dismissive. They may appear uninterested in you, for example, by constantly checking their phone, taking a call, or shuffling through papers. They may also interrupt you during your responses, by saying things like.
The interviewer is assessing both your confidence and patience. Don't change your answer, calmly repeat it, and stick to your response. Clarify anything that may need further explanation. If they have follow-up questions, respond to them calmly. This will demonstrate to them that you can stay calm and respectful in difficult situations, but you are also assertive enough to hold your position.
5. Random Questions
An employer may sometimes ask you an unexpected or seemingly unrelated question. For example, "If you could redesign a clock, how would you do it?" or even "I want you to jump out of the window now". These questions are meant to test how creatively you think on the spot. If you're feeling self-conscious about your ability to think creatively, don't worry. They're not looking for something extravagant, they want to see if you can provide a well-justified answer. If you can support your reasoning, they'll be impressed.
In this situation, it's important to remember that you can also ask questions. Seek clarification or more specific information. Ask about the potential benefits for both the company and for yourself.
6. More Than One Opinion
The traditional perception of an interview is that it starts when we sit down across from the interviewer. In reality, many businesses, the interview process starts well before you even reach the chair, and it may not end as soon as the questioning is over.
Many employers will ask the receptionist, driver, or any other person you had initial contact with, about your behavior. They will also ask them about your interactions during transportation if they have arranged for it. This goes beyond just being polite, they want to know if you are interactive or not, if you were chatting with them, if you were busy on your phone or if you were quiet throughout the journey. Our advice is to make at least some small talk, even if it's uncomfortable for you.
7. Introduces You To Your Potential Coworkers
Some employers may introduce you to other members of the office after the interview. You may think that this is a good sign and that you've nailed the interview, but that's not always the case. After these interactions with potential colleagues, the employer will ask them for their impression of you. Their opinions are important as they are the ones who will be working with you on a daily basis. Be friendly and be true to yourself.
The Bottom Line
Interviews can be challenging, and it's likely that you will be asked difficult, unexpected questions. Be prepared and take your time, breathe, and think through your responses. The interviewer may try to make you uncomfortable. If you are aware of this in advance, you will be mentally prepared and able to handle whatever the interviewer throws at you.