This article is part of the Interviewing Techniques Guide. Read our related articles on improving your interviewing skills and interviewing tips for hiring managers.
Are you looking for creative interview questions to spice up your hiring process? We’ve got you covered.
We know how boring and redundant it is to ask the same questions repeatedly during the interview process. The same applies to candidates. Imagine you go to 10 interviews where you have to answer the same standard questions.
Let’s spice things up and see some creative interview questions you can use starting today.
Interview Questions Basics
Why you should ask unique interview questions
Asking unique interview questions is one of the least used tools for recruitment because people don’t understand the value of this strategic approach. When you ask exciting questions your candidates are not expecting, you pull them out of their comfort zone and test their reactions to a challenging situation. This gives you a real insight into who they are and their responses.
Setting the stage for an engaging interview.=
Before jumping into the job-specific interview questions, it is important to set the stage. You should start with icebreaker questions and help your candidate feel comfortable. Once you set the stage, you can slowly move into more interesting and creative questions.
What uncommon questions reveal about the candidate
Breaking the pattern with creative job interview questions helps you understand who the person in front of you really is. We all know candidates who are pro at giving the correct answers and always answer with what they think recruiters want to hear. Asking them out-of-the-box questions is a great way to get insights into their way of thinking and reacting
Common interview questions are not enough
Nowadays, common interview questions are not enough anymore because they are used as a script. They lack creativity and a personal touch. Using creative questions offers a more personalized approach.
Types of Unique Interview Questions
Let’s take a look at some of the interview questions you can use:
Have you ever heard about icebreaker questions? “Breaking the ice” helps your candidate feel calm and accommodate to the new context. They are also great at allowing your candidate to adjust their communication and tone of voice in the room.
Here you have four questions that you can use:
- What are your pet peeves?
- What’s the best gift you gave someone?
- Tell me something unique about you?
- What excites you?
Creative Thinking Questions
Another category of questions is the creative one. These are the ones that help you see the creative thinking process behind the answer. It will show you how your candidate makes different connections and what values rise to the surface.
You can use questions such as:
- What would you do if you won $100 million in the lottery?
- What animal would you be?
- What is your idea of an amazing day?
- What would be your superpower?
Company Culture Questions
We mentioned in our previous blog posts how important it is to have a culture-fit approach when interviewing. These questions help you understand if the candidate is suitable for the company’s culture and if he can integrate easily into the team.
Here are some examples you can use, but remember that you need to adapt them to the values map you have developed for your company:
- What qualities do you admire most about yourself?
- Tell me something you’ve learned recently?
- What would you be if you were a product of ours?
- Let’s say you’re hiring. What would you look for in a candidate for this job?
- Who has helped you achieve your goals?
- What is the most important thing you want to remove from your daily work routine?
Tips for Asking Creative Questions
Although some examples help, we want to share more tips on asking better creative questions.
Tip #1 Be purposeful
One mistake recruiters make when trying to add creative questions to the interview process is that they throw them randomly. It would help if you tried to be purposeful and make sure every question build upon another and that you have a clear perspective on what you are searching for.
Tip #2 Set up an environment to communicate corporate culture
Make sure that during the interview, you prep the ground for talking more about the company’s culture, values, and expectations. Even though the candidate might not be your employee, you can use the interviews as an employer brand tool.
Tip #3 Make yourself comfortable
Your energy level will impact your candidate’s energy level. Make sure you feel comfortable and hold the same space for your candidate.
Tip #4 Tailor the questions to the job candidate
We previously mentioned how important it is not just to throw random questions. Another important aspect is to tailor the questions to the job candidate. Don’t just ask things that are not somehow related to the skills and attitude or values you are looking for.
Interview Questions FAQ
How do you stay creative when asking interview questions?
Ensure you constantly seek inspiration in blog posts, webinars, or other companies’ interviewing methods. You can also take your creativity from your candidates or your colleagues.
What are some basic interview questions and answers?
Some of the basic interview questions are:
- How did you hear about us?
- Why do you want this job?
- What are your strengths and your weaknesses?
- Tell us something about yourself
Why should you go beyond the typical questions?
Asking creative questions gives you a real insight into how your candidate thinks and behaves and his values.