Job Interview - First, Middle or Last to Go

I have an interview coming up and have been told that there are 4 people interviewing.

I can pick the first slot, 2nd or 3rd or the last slot. Which one is best?

I'm leaning toward the first one - to set the bar high...

Any thoughts from the great hive mind of M-T?

See Manager Tools' guidance on Interviewing here.

Job Interview - First, Middle or Last to Go

If you're good it doesn't matter.

If it's close, go last.

Your position will not be what decides the issue.

Mark

Job Interview - First, Middle or Last to Go

[quote="mahorstman"]If you're good it doesn't matter.

If it's close, go last.

Your position will not be what decides the issue.

Mark[/quote]

Thank you.

I was just thinking if I went first and was the 'energy, energy, energy!' candidate, and the others (and interviewers) were not, it would be a bit of an advantage.

I suppose I can go last and energize the panel after their turkey sandwich L-triptophan induced malaise.

:)

Job Interview - First, Middle or Last to Go

In all the HR and Org B courses I took, they always talked about contrast theory, recency and blurring. And that the more people the company interviewed, the less likely they were able to keep track of who was who.

All this boiled down to the professors saying that a very large percentage -I can't recall the specific number - of the job offers came from last two candidates.

As Mark says - if you are good, it should not matter. Unfortunately, all the people we deal with are not MT professionals, so I am guessing the interview process will make it closer than it needs to be. Go last.

Job Interview - First, Middle or Last to Go

John Lucht's book, Rites of Passage... says that the preferred order is first, followed by last, followed by middle.

To paraphrase, the first person can cause the employer to get "infatuated" with having found a good candidate for the role. The last candidate will be the one most recent in in the employer's mind.

Job Interview - First, Middle or Last to Go

Lucht's book is particularly for executives, who interview differently and have much higher standards. Most managers aren't that good...I still say last for most of us.

Mark

Job Interview - First, Middle or Last to Go

Tron,

I'd go for last too...

Bad candidate first - Interviewer thinks about leaving through the window.
Bad second candidate - Interviewer thinks about faking illness
Bad third candidate - Interviewer despairs and thinks about going through the process all over again.
Mediocre last candidate - Interviewer thinks hurrah and employs.

Excellent first candidate - Interviewer is happy, going to have a great day
Excellent second candidate - Interviewer compares to first.
Excellent third candidate - Interview compares to first and second
Excellent fourth candidate - All the others seem the same, fourth one must be better because I can remember specifics.

Not me of course ... but I can imagine it happening!

Wendii

Job Interview - First, Middle or Last to Go

I wonder how much of that "percentage" was just because they found the "right" candidate and stopped looking further.

CC

Job Interview - First, Middle or Last to Go

On the surface, one could simply apply the "I always find my car keys in the last place I looked" theory to this issue. However, interviews are most often pre-booked and although some candidates have flexibility in where and when they schedule their interviews, recruiters generally (not always) go through their entire short list.

I have not heard too many stories of people going through the formal interview process and being told not to come in for their interviews because a candidate has already been chosen.

*RNTT

Job Interview - First, Middle or Last to Go

I do not mean to imply that it always works because of the "last place I looked" theory.

The point seems irrelevant...as a job candidate, I don't recall ever having a say where in the order I interview. The only information I had available as a candidate was when I knew the hiring manager or someone close to the hiring process. Even then the information was pretty sparse.

That said... as a hiring manager, I have continued searching for others after deciding not to hire interviewees. When I found a qualified candidate and they accepted an offer, I stopped looking for additional people.

From a career management perspective, I see this as a better sooner rather than [u][b]too[/b] late[/u].

CC

Job Interview - First, Middle or Last to Go

CC

I think we are saying the same thing. After the "formal" HR mandated process fails you, you search until you find the one.

If I understand you correctly, you are then in the building your network and accessing the hidden talent market phase, so of course you will stop when you find what you are looking for in a candidate.

That is different than going through the formal hiring process with job postings and hr and regimented screenings and interviews etc.

*RNTT