Behavioral Interviewing: What It Is, Benefits & More

In the ever-evolving landscape of the executive search profession, the ability to find and select the right leaders is crucial for driving organizational success. Traditional interviews, although widely used, often prove insufficient in accurately assessing a candidate's suitability for a leadership role. This is where using behavioral interviewing to differentiate yourself from the competition can give you a distinct competitive edge.

Behavioral interviewing offers a comprehensive approach that goes beyond surface-level assessments. It enables executive search professionals to gain a deeper understanding of a candidate's past behaviors and, in turn, predict their future performance. By exploring a candidate's behavioral patterns, this interviewing technique provides valuable insights to determine their fit for a leadership position. 

What is Behavioral Interviewing? 

Behavioral interviewing is a technique that takes you beyond the surface when assessing qualifications and skills. It dives deep into a candidate's behavioral patterns by exploring their past experiences and actions in professional settings.  

Forget about hypothetical questions - behavioral interviews invite candidates to share real-life instances where they encountered challenges, made critical decisions, or showcased their unique behaviors. It's like peeling back the layers to gain a genuine understanding of their competencies, problem-solving abilities, and how they can add to an organization's culture. By analyzing these stories, you can gain valuable insights that help find the perfect match for the position. 

4 Benefits of Behavioral Interviewing 

Enhanced Predictive Validity 

Behavioral interviewing has proven to possess high predictive validity, making it a valuable tool in executive search. By examining a candidate's past behaviors, executive search consultants can assess their potential for success in a particular role. The idea that past behavior is a reliable indicator of future performance enables organizations to make more informed hiring decisions and minimize the risks associated with selecting leaders. 

Comprehensive Soft Skills Assessment 

Executive roles require a blend of technical expertise and soft skills. Traditional interviews often struggle to evaluate a candidate's soft skills accurately. Behavioral interviewing provides a platform to probe into a candidate's soft skills, such as leadership, communication, adaptability, and emotional intelligence. By analyzing specific scenarios from the candidate's past, executive search professionals can gain deeper insights into their ability to navigate complex situations, influence others, and drive organizational growth. 

Culture Add Evaluation 

Assessing culture add is vital in executive-level hiring as the focus shifts from mere fit to seeking leaders who can bring a fresh perspective and enhance the existing work culture. Behavioral interviewing enables executive search consultants to evaluate a candidate’s potential culture add. By delving into a candidate’s past professional experiences, behaviors, and values, executive search professionals can determine how these unique qualities and perspectives can enrich a company’s ethos. This evaluation ensures a seamless integration of the candidate into the organization’s team and culture, fostering an environment conducive to growth and innovation. 

Structured and Objective Evaluation 

One of the key advantages of behavioral interviewing is its structured nature, which ensures consistency and objectivity in the evaluation process. By utilizing a standardized set of behavioral questions, executive search consultants can conduct fair comparisons between candidates. This approach minimizes bias and enables more objective decision-making, resulting in the selection of the most suitable executive for the role. 

Sharpen Your Behavioral Interviewing Skills 

Discover the power of behavioral interviewing in the executive search industry and uncover valuable insights by delving into a candidate's past experiences, actions, and responses. 

By enrolling in AESC's Effective Interviewing eLearning program in partnership with Interview Edge, you will gain a valuable competitive edge in the executive search industry. This investment in your professional growth will empower you to identify exceptional executive talent, conduct insightful interviews, and make informed hiring decisions that drive organizational success. 

What Will You Learn? 

Learn interview strategies to help you identify the right candidate:

  • Define jobs in behavioral terms. 
  • Identify key competencies. 
  • Strengthen your team interviews. 
  • Determine fit with organizational culture and values. 
  • Keep your interviews legal. 
  • Make solid hiring decisions based on documented competencies. 

Elevate your behavioral interviewing skills and unlock the full potential of executive talent identification and selection. Take that next step in advancing your career and make a lasting impact in the executive search field.

Take the Effective Interviewing eLearning Course