3 Rules of Gift-Giving that Apply to the Interview Process

Posted by The ConveyIQ Team

‘Tis the season for quality time with family and friends, being force-fed brussels sprouts at the dinner table and wearing that old homemade scarf from grandma.

The holidays are a magical time to celebrate. This winter period is also a time when many people reflect on their current employment situation. Thinking about what the future may hold in their current company could very easily lead to a new job search.

As candidates enter the market and begin interviewing, it’s important for recruiters and hiring managers to think about the golden rules of unwrapping gifts.

Don’t Judge What’s on the Inside by What’s on the Outside

Gifts come in all different shapes, sizes, and packages but regardless of their appearance, it’s not always a clear indication of what’s on the inside. Before dismissing a candidate or making judgements about them, it’s important to evaluate their skills and abilities.

Allowing an opportunity for candidates to speak beyond their resume or even give some insight into their personality can help recruiters find a golden star amongst other white elephant gifts!

Pulling Back Layers is All About the Right Setting

It’s completely unacceptable to start tearing back the wrapping paper before celebrations commence, and it’s equally unacceptable to dive too deep too quickly with candidates. The interview process is just that, a process. Taking time to get to know candidates is important in order to understand their personality traits and behavioral skills. Dedicating time to candidates is also a good way to make them feel comfortable and relaxed while interviewing.

To establish a positive candidate experience, allow first round interviews to be calm yet stern in evaluating behavioral skills. Any additional interviews can give hiring managers the chance to discuss data-driven and analytical skills.

When Uncovering Something Unexpected, Keep Your Cool

Sometimes while unwrapping a gift, you already have something on your wish list and then when the wrapping comes off, it’s just something completely different. In a public setting or even just in front of the gift-giver, you have no other choice than just to grin and bear it.

During an interview, as candidates reveal too much about themselves or even give incorrect answers, it’s polite to listen and remain even-keeled. Dramatic reactions and emotions can make them feel embarrassed, unworthy, or even angry. This sets a negative tone for the rest of the interview. Give candidates time to collect their thoughts, justify their answers, take notes on their responses, and move on to the next question.


But just like unwrapping gifts, interviewing can be a piece of cake and more importantly, enjoyable. Kick back with a glass of egg nog and make the interview process fun!

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