Hiring new employees is an arduous task. Not only are new job candidates on display during the interview process but your company is under the microscope, as potential hires weigh your business’ strengths and weaknesses.
Job candidates evaluate everything about your business, including the leaders at the helm. The effectiveness of your company leader is imperative to the hiring process. With the average CEO rating at only 69%, according to a report by Glassdoor, the need for bosses to be engaged is growing and sought after by new job candidates.
Fourteen members of ForbesCoachesCouncil share several signs candidates should keep an eye out for that they are dealing with a great leader/boss in a job interview. Here is what they had to say:
1. Transparent Communication
Great leaders are transparent, team-focused and approachable. If you’re not getting a vibe of transparency and authenticity during an interview, you’re likely dealing with a “me-centric” leader who may not provide the support and environment you need. Carefully weigh the message, body language and demeanor of the hiring manager and follow your gut if something is off. – Jeanna McGinnis,ReResumeMe®
2. Interest In Your Personal Development
The main objective is to interview and hire for the job at hand; however, a great leader/boss is interested in your development and a pipeline of talent for continuous improvement. If the leader does not have a clear indication of ways they can help promote you or support your growth, run away quickly from the dead-end opportunity. – LaKisha Greenwade, Lucki Fit LLC
3. Good Listening Skills
While in an interview, the easiest way to identify a great boss is to ask yourself, “Did they actually listen to what I had to say?” Great leaders are open to great ideas, no matter where those ideas come from. If you’re listened to and actually heard during the interview process, it’s a good sign that you’ll be listened to and heard as a team member. – Dr. Stephen Kalaluhi, The StephenK Group
4. They Inspire Others And Convey Vision
A leader is able to convey their vision to every member of their company and team. It’s not just the CEO who must have vision for the direction of the company. A great boss will pull you in and inspire you about what he or she is doing in the world through the company. – Amanda Frances, Amanda Frances Inc
5. Open-Minded Approach
A key quality of a great boss is one who has an agenda for organizational success, but is flexible for how they will achieve it. This open-minded approach shows through in how much they engage you in real problem-solving in the interview. If they are open to your ideas, your opinion and approach, that means they are not locked into theirs and looking to only hire another cog in their wheel. – Loren Margolis, Training & Leadership Success LLC
6. Empathy And Genuine Care
The best bosses are curious about you as a human from the start. They care to ask about your long-term career plans. They generally have a sense of humor that comes across quickly. They are looking to invest in their team members’ success and to help each one to give their best and move up quickly. The best way to find out each potential boss’ approach is to ask up front! – Yuri Kruman, Master The Talk Consulting
7. They Tie It All Together
The invaluable leader can articulate to you how you are going to thrive in the organization. They will make it clear that they understand your value, and your passion. By the end of the interview, a great leader will make it clear why they want you, and why you will want to be a part of the team. They are able to show you the entire picture. – Donald Hatter, Donald Hatter Inc.
8. Emotional Intelligence
Emotionally intelligent leaders make great bosses and create organizations that thrive. A key way to spot an emotionally intelligent leader is observing the types of questions asked. Is the person truly interested in you? How are the questions asked? Pay attention to the tone and other non-verbal cues. Then, observe how the person answers your questions. Will you grow and develop working for them? – Renelle Darr, InSight Coaching & Consulting
9. Social Awareness And Psychological Safety
Look for their sensitivity on how they impact others and willingness to support. With the focus on a correct hire, they will revert to what is habitual. Watch for body language, does it convey superiority or does it elicit comfort? Listen to their tone. Notice time between utterances, do you feel interrupted or do they reflect before speaking? Did interactions increase your confidence or doubt? – Valerio Pascotto, IGEOS
10. Empowering Language
To spot a great leader or boss, listen to their language. If it’s empowering, one of ownership and commitment to their values, that’s an excellent sign. Also, ask them to tell you about when they’ve failed and how they recovered from it. See if it resonates with your work style. – Kelly Meerbott,You: Loud & Clear
11. Value Alignment
I love to ask, “What is your most recent win/success?” Then listen. This question gives you a clear view of what your future boss and company values are. Do they talk about a team win or their own? Do they describe something tactical or something softer? How did they treat others in achieving their success? What do they wish they did differently? Listen to see if their values align to yours. – Jennifer Thompson, Deviant Thinking
12. They Balance Realism With Optimism
There’s no perfect work environment, which means we can make our best decision on a next role when we know the good and not-so-good of the job and company. The best bosses are honest about the company’s flaws, yet are also clear and authentically optimistic about its positive aspects and future path. And they balance their observations across culture, processes and business direction. – Bonnie Davis,Destination Up
13. Integrity, Compassion, Competence
A great leader is easy to spot by looking for these three easy markers: integrity, compassion, competence. During the interview, look for natural exhibitions of these three qualities and you will know if you are looking at a great leader. A boss/leader lacking in any one or more of these critical attributes may not provide the high performance, healthy work environment you may require. – Kevin Leonard, Emerald Bay Performance
14. They Ask Great Questions
Bosses/leaders are interested in their people. They ask great questions, then listen, then ask more great questions. Great questions include hard questions where you have to get a little uncomfortable and vulnerable. Good leaders respect the effort this takes and give supportive feedback. Good bosses/leaders are comfortable in their own skins and in control. Frenetic leaders drain your energy. – Frances McIntosh, Intentional Coaching LLC
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