3 interview tactics for winning over your favorite candidates

One talented new hire can improve a whole team's performance, but attracting these high-potential candidates can be tricky, Kevin Campbell writes for Gallup.

Recruiting a high-quality new hire might be one of the best ways to improve your team's performance overall. Talented new hires are not only faster and less costly to onboard, but research has found that star employees are also more productive and less stressed out than their peers. Similarly, other studies have shown that talented employees raise the productivity of the people who sit near them by as much as 16%.

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But competition for top candidates can be steep, Campbell writes. One way to recruit them is to remember the interview process is a two-way street: Candidates are evaluating you just as much as you're evaluating them. Campbell offers three things you can say during the interview that can help ensure you make a good impression on your favorite candidates.

1: Emphasize professional development

Contrary to popular belief, millennial employees are more interested in growth opportunities than workplace perks, Campbell writes. And high-quality applicants are more likely to report being attracted to a position because of development opportunities than their low-quality counterparts, he notes.  

If you frame a position as a launch pad for future career success, you can increase the flow of ambitious high-quality candidates, Campbell suggests. To emphasize the organization's learning opportunities, ensure that every job posting includes development-related messages, he notes.

2: Highlight challenges

Many applicants look for a job that suits their specific strengths, finds a recent study. So to attract star candidates, celebrate a position's unique challenges as a chance for employees to use their strengths.

While some leaders may be tempted to minimize a position's difficulties, glossing over challenges can attract candidates who aren't the right fit and won't experience long-term success in the industry, Campbell warns.

3: Focus on mission

To attract successful employees, make the mission a major selling point. According to Campbell, emphasizing how a position contributes to a larger purpose can boost applicant interest and lead to deeper engagement down the road (Campbell, Gallup, 10/10).

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