Posted by tac_admin, March 19, 2014

How to Interview New Team Members

lady-1038728-mWe’ve all been to interviews as the interviewee, but being the interviewer can be just as stressful. You want to know quickly if the person you’re talking to will be a good fit, and here are a few tips for interviewing we’ve found to be helpful in deciding who to work with.

Be clear on what you’re looking for.

What types of personalities are you seeking to put together on your team? What combinations of expertise and experience would be ideal for this project? When you know what you want, you’ll be just as clear about what you don’t want. Visualize your perfect team, what it looks like, and how it works together. Do your BA team interviews with the end in mind.

What does your gut say?

In the world of BA, we’re all about logic, numbers, and objective data, so we don’t train ourselves to listen to our intuition as much as we could. When your interviewee sits down in front of you and begins talking, listen to the little voice in your head and the feeling in the pit of your stomach.

Your intuition may give you a strong feeling one way or the other, or it may not—but if it does, listen and trust it.

Does he or she have the experience you want?

There are many types of Business Analysis experience: position experience, industry experience, company experience, client service experience, and the list goes on. Know before you interview which types of experience you’re looking for, but don’t be a slave to that decision. You may find that you wanted position experience, but you find someone who has little of that but a decade of industry experience. That’s valuable. Where can you use that person in creating your BA team?

Be open to utilizing interviewees in other positions than you’re hiring for that day. If you know you’ll need a project manager in a month, and you just interviewed the perfect candidate, offer him or her that job instead. If you’re in charge of hiring, you can assemble your team in any way you wish.

Just listen.

Many interviewers talk more than they should and don’t allow the interviewee to tell his or her story. You can find out everything you need to know about a person in a relatively short time if you actively listen, which means paying close attention to what the person says and leaving out the natural desire to jump in and agree or ask more questions.

Don’t jump to conclusions when you interview. Yes, your gut will give you an indicator of what kind of person you’re talking with, but if your gut isn’t screaming “no” loudly, give that person plenty of time to tell you who he or she is. Don’t use the answer to one question to disqualify that person. Try a completely different type of question and see where the conversation goes.

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