Discover Caring Employees with Three Job Interview Questions

Selecting the Right Candidate for Hire Begins by Asking the Right Questions During the Job Interview

David Cox | November 05, 2019

The importance of caring employees

Do you hire caring employees? Specifically, these are the employees who care beyond their self-interests. It’s not difficult to find job candidates who want to advance their careers and make more money. The question is whether you hire employees who connect their goals to how much they care for your mission to those you serve.

How do we go about hiring such people? I suggest employers consider the following three job interview questions. These will help the employer gain insight into a job candidate’s capacity to care about those whom they serve.

Why do you want this job?

High-character employees serve their customers. They also serve their employers, and they help fulfill the mission of the organizations they serve. They are neither selfish nor self-serving, and they genuinely care about serving others. As an employer, you want to hire caring employees with a passion for service. It makes sense for employers to listen carefully when job candidates explain why they want a particular position.

Can you tell me about the last time you went beyond the call of duty at work?

I’ve personally experienced employees who have spent considerable time, traveled further distances, and performed tasks above and below their pay grade to provide the service I needed. A few days ago, I mentioned to a store cashier that I needed a particular item but had been unable to find it. She walked around the cash register and headed down one of the aisles with me. Once located, she pulled the item I needed off the shelf and handed it to me.

The total time she spent on that bit of customer service couldn’t have taken more than a minute. Regardless, she went the extra mile to help me find what I needed. I will undoubtedly shop this store again.

I wonder how many employers bother to ask candidates to give such examples from their own work experience. In fact, I feel it’s appropriate to ask for a brief narrative answer about this topic on the job application. The people who demonstrate this type of care and willingness to go the extra mile inspire customer loyalty. Obviously, such behavior is clearly beneficial to any business.

As a supervisor, how would you deal with employees who come to work with the flu?

An area radio station employee, I’ll call Howard, went to bed one night feeling he was coming down with a cold. He woke up the next morning with the flu. He called the station’s office, but his supervisor insisted that he had to report to work. Howard couldn’t do his job well, but soon, some of his colleagues, including their most popular radio host got sick. The flu took quite a toll on the workplace over the next three weeks.

A caring supervisor would have encouraged Howard to stay home. He could have been urged to seek medical attention, get some rest, and return when he was feeling better. A caring employee may eventually become a caring supervisor. They care about the sick employee, the employee’s co-workers, and the company’s ability to serve its clients (in this case advertisers and their listening audience).

The value of caring employees

We should always endeavor to hire the best trained and most highly skilled employees available. Nevertheless, I believe employers need caring employees. Those who care beyond their self-interests. Just imagine what your business could accomplish if all of your employees were both highly skilled and cared about things that truly mattered to those you serve.

David Cox


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