Sometimes an innocent conversation during an interview can have horrific consequences, especially if you end up not hiring a person.

The biggest problem every company faces during the hiring process is the interview. 

Two people go into a room together for a conversation and no one knows what transpires. Conversations flow and curiosity carries the conversation.

As we all know, curiosity killed the cat… and possibly your company.

Let’s replace curiosity with consistency.

Because the lack of consistency is what breeds unfair interviewing practices by promoting assumptions and cultivating bias. By simply eliminating assumptions & bias from the interview, we can create a process where evidence is gathered that supports the decision.

Minimizing your exposure to future litigation.

Guest Bio

Victor Xu is attorney extraordinaire in the Fisher Phillips Irvine office where he represents companies in all aspects of labor and employment litigation, from inception through trial, in state and federal courts throughout California. 

 Victor also has significant experience in conducting internal investigations into alleged employee/supervisor misconduct, including harassment and discrimination, and has provided recommendations for remedial measures, including preparation of new company policies.

Today we discuss:

  • Ways your interview might be harming your company 
  • How to set a process that minimizes potential litigation

Challenges today?

What gets you in trouble when interviewing

  • Telling people “you are a perfect candidate” 
  • California is pro-plaintiff
  • People grasp on to certain words

Having a standard in place where interviewers are not just shooting from the hip in the interview

  • Mitigate risk 
  • What kind of music do you like?
  • Fishing questions
    • Trying to be personal but it is going too far
    • Too much feedback

Why is this important to the company?

  • Serial interviewees who doesn't get the job claiming discrimination
  • Going after tech companies
  • Puts handcuffs on the company to settle
  • People catch wind of who was hired

Rick’s Nuggets

  • Interviews tend to be shallow and decisions are made on assumptions & bias

How do we solve the problem? 

Train people to interview and use trained people exclusively

  • Select interview team
  • All people trained 
  • Stick to the interview outline and consider a list of no-go questions.
  • Training limits the liability of what is said/asked (extra layer of protection)

Create an interview guide of objective questions

  • Consistent & fair process
  • Questions for everyone & role specific questions
    • Questions vetted to mitigate risk
    • Off-handed comments 
      • “Your a perfect candidate”
      • “Youthful culture” 
      • Religious assumptions - questions about drinking, etc.
      • “What's your ethnic background?” 
    • Relating to the candidate can get you in trouble

Honest response for hiring choice

  • We are going to pass at this time: Thank you for applying, but we have decided to pursue other applicants.  We wish you the best of luck in your future endeavors. 

Values cannot be discriminatory, Legitimate business reason- values

  • Information to disclose
    • We decided to go with another person

Rick’s Nuggets

Tie your interview questions to values

  • Assign the questions to a specific interview position (ie: interview #1) 
  • Remove opinion from the decision making process
    • Score card ranking - highly subjective
  • Weigh values alignment above skills
  • Evaluate skills based on performance metrics for the role

Key Takeaways that the Audience can plug into their business today! (Value):

  • Brewery of the perks that you offer candidates and understand their consequences. 
  • Ensure employees are properly classified even where both sides agree.
  • Train and prepare your team on appropriate interview questions. 

Guest Links

Host Links:

  • LinkedIn:
  • Company:
  • Podcast:
  • Authored:  "Healing Career Wounds"
  • HireOS inquiry:

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