If you boil the interview process down to its primordial goo, it exists to try and predict if someone’s skills and successes in the past are likely to be repeated in your environment.

Therefore, you need to know:

  • what were someone’s skills and successes
  • what were the conditions under which they flourished
  • has anything cropped up in the interim to provide obstacles to his or her repeating those successes
  • how similar were the success conditions to the circumstances at your company

You must uncover the candidate’s SASS:

  • Skills – the vital experience in having performed similar functions; knowledge base
  • Accomplishments – success in having performed those functions
  • Support – evidence of the skill sets, knowledge base and successes
  • Suitability – degree to which has worked in similar or analogous settings (cultural and technical)

You can best determine this information using the 5 W’s and the H:

  • Who is this person? His or her aspirations, motivation, style, skills, successes, down sides and value added?
  • What does s/he know? What role can s/he best serve?
  • When did this person accomplish his or her achievements? What are the patterns of his or her accomplishments, promotions, shortcomings, job moves? Will they fit in your company?
  • Where did this person accomplish his or her achievements? Was the environment relevant to your company? Why is s/he here? What are his or her hot buttons, or primary needs?
  • How did s/he achieve his or her successes? To what degree can s/he claim individual responsibility, as opposed to group or corporate?

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