You don’t have to be a headhunter to ask probing questions that reveal somebody’s true grit, talent and tenacity.
Here’s one from Lou Adler, a headhunter and author of the books Hire With Your Head and The Essential Guide for Hiring and Getting Hired:
“What single project or task would you consider your most significant accomplishment in your career so far?”
That’s a very difficult question. But isn’t it great if you’re the one asking it? Think of all the times when you can use it, or a variation:
—When you need to hire a consultant
—When you’re looking for a coach or mentor
—When you need to hire a speaker for a big event
—When you’re interviewing someone for a blog post, article or book you’re writing
—When you’re interviewing a guest expert or celebrity for a podcast or radio show
And certainly, when you’re interviewing someone for a job, either as an employee, or a subcontractor.
When you hear the answer and want to probe deeper, here’s a list of Adler’s follow-up questions during interviews. Not all will be pertinent, but they’ll give you some ideas.
What other situations can you think of that would be perfect for this question? And if you’re inclined to share your own answer to the question, the Comments section awaits.
Publicity Hounds, what would you say if a journalist asked you this question during a live TV interview? Would you be ready?