One of the best ways to keep your unemployment costs down is to lower your company’s turnover. One of the best ways to keep down turnover is to make good hiring decisions and hire the right candidate. There are many factors that contribute to hiring the best candidate, but one of the most important is to conduct an effective employment interview.
Many experts have maintained that 90 percent of all communication is non-verbal. Looking at body language during a job interview often reveals loads of clues about the applicant. Much of what an interviewer needs to know about a candidate can be learned from these non-verbal factors.
The following are just some of the non-verbal clues that you should be paying attention to during an interview:
- Appearance – did the candidate dress up for the interview? Are they well groomed and “professional” in appearance?
- The Handshake – did the candidate confidently shake your hand or did they forget or do something “half-hearted”?
- Body Language – this can help you determine the level of confidence a candidate has, and it can tell you whether they have come prepared with standard responses or if they’re thinking on their feet. Fidgeting, sitting up straight, leaning forward, touching their face or lips are all body language cues that need to be paid attention to when conducting an interview. It’s one of the best ways to assess a candidate during the interview.
- Eye Contact – pay attention to the candidate’s eye contact. Is their gaze direct and at ease, or do they glance at you, around the room, or at the floor? Maintaining eye contact longer indicates stronger self-confidence.
- Discrepancies – look for discrepancies between what the candidate is saying and their nonverbal cues. If they answer “no” to a question while nodding his/her head up and down, pay closer attention. And if the candidate jiggles their foot (or shows other signs of nervousness) while answering a straightforward question, beware!
If you notice potentially troubling non-verbal cues, the best approach is to ask a lot of questions. If someone is not being entirely truthful, it will be harder to maintain a lie under more detailed questioning. Of course, some of these nonverbal cues can be due to nervousness, so be careful about jumping to conclusions.
You can increase your powers of nonverbal comprehension through practice. Make a habit of observing people, throughout your day and in any given situation. Pay attention to the body language and expressions of the people you talk to. You can experiment with your own body language and tone of voice, and observe the reactions of others. You can also seek professional consulting assistance with this task – there are many companies who offer training in this area (and many others).
All of this means that you should pay attention to your intuition about a candidate. Trust that you are picking up more information than you may be consciously aware of, and pay attention to your hunches. Then, use that information, in balance with the objective findings you have gathered about their work experience, job references, and assessment results, to make your decision. You stand a better chance of lowering your turnover and consequently lowering your UI costs. Fewer UI claims helps lead to a healthier bottom line.
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