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Training in Recruitment and Competency based Interviews


I have been asked to run a 1 day workshop with managers called "recruitment and how to conduct competency based Interviews".
I am looking for any help with exercises, any thoughts?

Many thanks,

[email protected]
Sarah Leahy

5 Responses

  1. scoring matrix

    I’ve been running a similar workshop for a client for nearly two years now and the single most useful tool the managers find is the scoring matrix.
    We give them a real job spec (the one we use has lots of detail, too much in fact) and get them to produce a scoring matrix from it…they can then discuss and debate the different weightings they have given…it also allows consideration of the value of the job spec and the impact of the existing team on the scoring matrix, the value of the scoring matrix for first and second interviews and between interviewers, the value of the matrix after the event and so on.
    We then give them a job spec and a cv and get them to do a scoring matrix and use it as a base for planning an interview. Then we role play an interview and analyse the outcomes of the prep and the event.

  2. Training Competency MappingtInterviews
    Oh Sarah! This is not a simple task.

    The essence is to get to core behaviours that not only meet a ‘standard’, but exceed it.

    That in my view is the difference between a ‘competence’ (ie a minimal standard required, such as a NVQ), and a ‘competency’ – which may reflect current experienmce but also emerging needs.

    I assume this is common ground?

    So for a training workshop in establishing such needs, may I warmly recommend some training on Critical Incident Analysis, Repertory Grid (a very profound subject if you want to get fully immersed in the methodology professionally) and – for all this may be obvious – core interviewing skills that suggest no preconceived answers?

    You may also find some clustering-of-evidence techniques quite helpful?

    And just in case I might not be teaching you to suck eggs?

    My own experience is that the vast majority
    of senior respondents in any professional competency mapping exercise is that they find it ever so hard to differentiate the *behavioural* components of a competency from the rest. So well worth focussing on how to do this?

    Privately, I have never found an in-house competency mapping exercise to be really successful because of all the vested interests and internal politics they carry as baggage, but do let me know how you get on?

    Good luck!


  3. Competency based interview (CBI) training
    Hi Sarah,

    I’d strongly agree that having a good grasp of the behavioural competencies is critical. The key model that is used in much recruitment – the ORCE approach – applies to interviewing well, too.
    O – observe them in action (ie ask some good quality open questions).
    R – record what they say (yes, they will have to take notes!).
    C – classify. The potentially slightly tricky bit, as you need to map their responses onto your specfic behavioural competencies.
    E – evaluate their interview performance on each competency using a rating scale (1 (poor) to 5 (excellent) is popular).

    I’ve been CBI traing for over 10 years now, and find that exercises around:
    – Rapport development
    – Open questioning
    – Probing answers (the vital bit!)
    – Active listening
    – Coaching on classification and evaluation
    – Interview practice in threes (I’er, I’ee and Observer)

    Tend to be really handy… and not necessarily as dry as you’d expect. Drop me a line if you’d like to know more.

    All the best, Paul.

  4. Bring in specialist roleplayers
    Paul and Jeremy are absolutely right to home in on the need to focus on the PRACTICE of behaviours. People can’t possibly learn about behaviours through theory alone – it has to be experiential! So my advice is: bring in actors who specialise in corporate roleplay. Actors are experts in human behaviour because they spend their working lives observing and replicating it. It’s also part of their job to identify and articulate the nuances that make or break successful face-to-face communication (whether and in what precise ways a delegate is exhibiting good rapport, listening, questioning, probing of answers etc.) – so the feedback they give after a roleplay can make crystal clear those behavioural components that Jeremy says are so hard to differentiate. And unlike non-professionals (i.e. other delegates in the group), they can be relied upon to deliver a consistent performance ad infinitum, or to adapt what they’re doing to incorporate a new challenge or learning point at the drop of a hat.

    If you need any help to make this happen, get in touch: I can recommend plenty of actors who are highly experienced in this type of work.

    All the best with it.

  5. Recruitment ice breaker
    Hi Sarah
    You might want to try an exercise where they split into pairs and have 2 minutes to interview each other to find out as many as facts about the person as possible. Then compare the total number found out – it’s amazing the diiferences, and it highlights the role of fact finding / asking the right type of questions to illicit information.

    I also have a short exercise where delegates need to establish whether various statements are good or bad examples of behaviour. I would be very happy to send you (or anyone else) a copy if you email me on [email protected]
    Hope that helps
    Happy Days!
    Bryan Edwards


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