Creative Personality Interview Questions Worth Trying

A candidate’s personality is an important factor in workplace success.…

A candidate’s personality is an important factor in workplace success.

In fact, The Institute of Student Employers has reported that around 92% of employers use some form of personality testing in their hiring process. Finding a candidate that’s a good personality fit for your company can be challenging. But with the help of good personality interview questions, you can be poised to hire the right person.

To save you from the time of brainstorming questions in preparation for your next interview, we’ve gathered some great questions you can try. These questions will help you truly get to know applicants and determine whether their personality and skills are a good fit for the company. 

Three woman discussing something with one of them looking at her laptop.
Photo by Christina @ wocintechchat.com on Unsplash

Why Ask Personality Questions in an Interview

Soft skills aren’t always obvious on an applicant’s resume.

Knowledge and experience are both important factors to consider when hiring someone. But screening for personality traits can help you ensure potential hires perform well under stressful circumstances and collaborate with their colleagues.

Personality interview questions can reveal the following:

  • Flexibility
  • Team spirit
  • Resilience
  • Aspirations
  • Time Management
  • Openness to criticism
  • Work ethics, and so on.

If you are interviewing candidates with similar hard skills, personality questions can reveal intangible qualities that can make or break effective employment relationships. These questions can also be used to identify potential creative hires.

Creative Personality Interview Questions

  • What are your hobbies and sports outside of work?
  • What characteristics make you unique?
  • Do you prefer working alone or with a team? Why?
  • What are your passions?
  • How did you go beyond expectations in your last job?
  • What would your best friend say about you?
  • Have you ever made a creative solution to a challenging task? What was the result?
  • How do you handle stress and pressure at work?
  • What are your feelings when someone interrupts you during a task?
  • How do you balance your work, life, and relationships?
  • Tell me about a time when you made a mistake at work. What did you do to correct it?
  • Tell me about a time when you needed information from someone who wasn’t responsive. What did you do?
  • Have you ever bent a company policy so you could satisfy a client?
  • What were your responsibilities in your last job? What were the things you did to learn the ropes?
  • Give me an example of a conflict you encountered with a coworker. How did you deal with it?
  • What three words would best describe your personality?
  • When was the last time you got angry at work? What happened, and what did you do?
  • Was there a particular criticism you received that was useful?
  • What does success look like to you?
  • What would you do when if a coworker did something unethical?
  • If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?
  • What are three words you would use to describe yourself and why?
  • Are you an introvert or an extrovert? Why do you feel that way?
  • What is your favorite way to spend your free time?
  • What are your biggest pet peeves?

Red flags to Look Out For

Listen well to the answers applicants give to your questions. It’s important to note their tone, demeanour, and choice of words. Here are some common red flags that might indicate unsuitability for the role.

Unprofessional answers

Candidates should keep their answers professional and relevant at all times. Too many jokes, for example, indicate that they don’t take you and the interview seriously.

Lack of passion

It’s easy to see passion and enthusiasm in candidates through their answers. Responses that are dull and lack any authentic connection to the job might indicate that they’re not really interested in the job.

Try to understand what motivates candidates if you can’t find sparks of enthusiasm when they talk about their job.

Extremely low or high self-esteem

Candidates must describe their biggest professional accomplishments in some personality interview questions. If they have difficulty finding one, then they either have limited experience or lack self-esteem.

Both are red flags, particularly in senior roles. Exaggerating their achievements also be a red flag. It can mean that they’re dishonest or not team players.

Too much focus on work

Workaholics with no other interests besides their jobs and who prefer to work long hours are more likely to develop toxic behaviors at work. You need employees who can find balance, have hobbies, and have time for social purposes. Some people can be highly productive if their work and private lives sync.

Rehearsed and unauthentic answers

Candidates want to impress you during interviews, so they’ll likely be prepared for common interview questions. Look out for generic answers that lack clarity or creativity.

Conclusion

Personality interview questions are designed to understand a person’s character, values, and ideals. They can provide insights into the nature of their strengths and weaknesses as a potential employee.

It can also offer other valuable information about their suitability for a certain position. When asking these questions, the goal is to create a positive and engaging interview so you’ll learn the most from your candidate.

Frequently asked questions

Creative Personality Interview Questions Worth Trying

Abir is a data analyst and researcher. Among her interests are artificial intelligence, machine learning, and natural language processing. As a humanitarian and educator, she actively supports women in tech and promotes diversity.

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