Now this is probably more of a “trick” than an approach, but I read about this being used in a job interview and I can see how it could be effective.
Let’s set the scene.
You have someone in front of you that you believe IS qualified for the position. After you finish your interview, you sit back in your chair, sigh, and say, “Well, Alice, I do appreciate you taking the time to come in today, but it appears you are very unqualified for this position.”
And then you say nothing and wait for Alice to respond.
If Alice buckles and simply agrees, well, you’ve detected a lack of confidence on her part.
But she may protest and say, “With all due respect, I believe I’m more than qualified for the position.”
At which point, of course, you smile broadly and tell her you agree and that you were just kidding.
Yes, it’s a bit on the mean side, but you’ll definitely gain an insight into how confident your applicant is.
What if Alice frowns and says, “thank you for your time. I guess I’ll get going.”
Well, you’ve got two choices there. If you really like the candidate and the hit on her confidence didn’t bother you, you could blurt out that you were just kidding.
However, if her level of confidence was a deciding factor, then of course move on to your next applicant.
If you do hire Alice, she may think you’re a bit of an oddball for running an interview in that way, but hey, it’s your interview and it’s up to you to find out as much as you can about future performance.
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