• Client Service

Confidence or Competence? How a Hiring Committee Can See A Candidate’s True Colors

Presence is one important facet of a qualified professional. But confidence can compliment an inventory of skills or it can overcompensate for a lack of skills. It can be hard to tell the difference between a real gem and fool’s gold. How do you ensure that a candidate will be a sustainable employee and not just a shining interviewee? We offer three tips for overcoming the predisposition to rally for an overconfident presenter.

Vary your interactions. Interviews should incorporate a variety of times to see the candidates in multiple settings. Include informal time to interact and get to know them and focused time to interview. Craft questions that hone in on key aspects of the position, the candidates’ qualifications, and their interpersonal dynamics.

Invite input. Your hiring committee should include a diverse set of stakeholders. The plurality of those perspectives gives you important insight into your candidates. How does she relate to students? What does the Board of Regents think of his qualifications? Does the faculty see her as a cultural fit for the school?

Rely on their references. Even in a lengthy interview process, the amount of time you spend with candidates can be measured in hours—during which they will be on their best behavior. It’s vital that you hear from people who worked with the candidates over years—including times when things didn't go their way. “How does he respond when he’s made a mistake?” and “how does she work in a team?” are key questions.