10 Common Interview Questions HR Leaders Love To Ask

Preparing for interview questions is a standard practice among job-seekers. Many interviews request the same types of information – experience, education, skills. Though the interviewer might throw a curveball question at you from time to time, for the most part, the questions are predictable. 

Every HR professional has a go-to question they love to ask. For that reason, we asked 10 recruiters to share their favorite interview questions to ask and what they expect to learn from the answers.

What was the outcome of your last workplace disagreement?

HR professionals want to know that they are going to hire someone who is able to handle conflict on their own. Asking questions like, “When was the last time you had a disagreement with a colleague or customer? What was the outcome?” will help you as an HR professional better assess how the candidate can handle discomfort and confrontation.

Kimberly Kriewald, AVANA Capital

What are five things you can do with this roll of duct tape? 

In a final round interview, I screen for creativity and curiosity by asking my favorite interview question: “What are five things you can do with this roll of duct tape?” As a marketing agency, we need to talk about the products and services of our clients between 50-200 times per year. We’re posting in-depth blogs about their business or making social media updates. So, if a candidate can’t come up with five things to do with a roll of duct tape, how will they be able to create a 12-month content strategy for a credit repair company? 

Brett Farmiloe, Markitors

What is your daily routine and how do you separate your work from your personal life?

It’s important to know how people manage their time when they’re working from home. I want to get a sense of how well they plan and structure their day around the typical distractions that occur in a home environment, like answering the doorbell or handling the needs of their children. In addition, I usually discover whether they have dedicated office space from which to work and the level of support they receive from their family.

One of my favorite questions is designed to determine someone’s level of creativity. We are a content-based website so writing and marketing skills are usually at the top of our list when we hire.

Alex Azoury, Home Grounds

Can you draw a caricature version of you on this piece of paper?

Problem-solving is a very important trait we desire in candidates. Problems are always random and put people out of their comfort zone. This question is designed to test candidates on how they tackle situations they weren’t ready for. Most candidates have never tried drawing. This forces them to try something out of their comfort zone. Also, the way they draw themselves and the props along with it will give me an idea of how they view themselves. 

Ian Kelly, NuLeaf Naturals

What management style works best for you? 

While some people may be independent self-starters, others need more structured guidance. It’s helpful to know under what style people thrive before hiring them. This is especially true if they’ll be working with a manager with a particular style.

Tim Reitsma, People Managing People

What do you think you can contribute to the company culture?

The reason behind the question is simple: HR professionals are on the lookout for the well-being of the company and the employees. They want to know if they bring you on as a part of the team how you will enhance the company and positively contribute to the existing culture. If you can answer that question thoroughly and show the HR leader that you will be an asset, you are on your way to acing the interview process. 

Zack McCarty, Qwick

What motivates and excites you?

The question is meant to let us know if the candidate’s source of motivation lines up with both our company’s ethos and the role they are interviewing for. It is also a question that gives insight into whether the candidate is self-driven.

Reuben Yonatan, GetVoIP

What have you learned about yourself during the pandemic? 

This question will tell me how you do things during a crisis. It will give me an idea of your emotional intelligence. Can you do the job while working from home? The current pandemic has made it clear to me that working from home can work! This question will gauge a candidate’s readiness to work remotely and if they have the tools to make it work.

Jeremy Harrison, Hustle Life

What life lesson are you most grateful for?

I want to hear some depth. We’ve likely all been through some very difficult times in our lives. What did you gain from those difficulties? What lessons have they imprinted on you that make you uniquely qualified for a role within our company?

Chris Fernandez, Women’s Health Interactive

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