What's your favorite interview question to ask?

Posted April 30, 2021 in
Content Managers Content Managers

Adam Stahl

I like to say that I put the "information" in information technology.

I was inspired to ask this today because I was doing an interview and realized that there was one specific question I was really excited to ask.

It's unlocked a lot of great conversations for me lately and so I was looking forward to see where it would lead.

Borrowed from  Liz Moorehead 's Content Compass, it's "why are they asking this question or researching this topic now?"

What are some of your favorite questions to ask when interviewing someone?

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Stephanie Baiocchi
I love asking people under what circumstances they're most productive and at what time of day (if that is part of it for them) and how they optimize their work around knowing that.
Adam Stahl
Oh, that's a fascinating one,  Stephanie Baiocchi  ! It occurs to me that I may need to also figure out the answer to that for myself. 😅
Lex Russell
We hired an intern recently and one of my favorites was asking how they deal with writer's block/what is their drafting process. Those small questions revealed a lot and the candidate with the best writing sample actually ended up not getting the job.
Connor DeLaney
Love that for content writers in particular!! Great share  Lex Russell !
Adam Stahl
That's an interesting one, Lex Russell   and pretty wild how much it reveals! 
Connor DeLaney
When it comes specifically to content writing, I go to the deeper piece of your question  Adam Stahl - "What emotion(s) is the person reading this article feeling?" This question has always been fascinating to me and changes the tone I write with, how I position follow up questions, as well as what kind of framing I need to do. 

Corin Cook   Bri Stauffer   Erica Rulevish   Jolie Higazi  what questions are your favorites to ask? 
Adam Stahl
Digging that,  Connor DeLaney  ! So important at that point because if you know why they're asking the question but not the emotions they're feeling in that moment you could easily alienate them if you don't meet those emotions appropriately.
Connor DeLaney
The sooner the connection happens, the more likely they are to hang around :D 
John Becker
Adam Stahl It's funny how many different ways people took your question. I immediately thought of interviewing an SME for an article.

In that case, I always try to provide guardrails on any question I'm asking -- I find that it both helps the SME and ultimately helps the reader. So, I find myself doing a lot of "What's ONE thing..." or "What's the biggest reason..."
Adam Stahl
Thanks,  John Becker  ! I love that idea of the bowling lane bumpers and is something I'll be immediately rolling into my interview process. I read the above and was immediately floored by how much of a difference that shift could make.

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