Almost everyone has had to come up with certain decisions in life that seemed to be against their morals. Be it your work ethics or your personal ethics. You might have been in a dilema of having to choose between the right thing and the moral thing to do. There might have been instances when you have felt that you have compromised with your ethics while making certain choices since you had no other option at hand.
It all depends on what levels you have set your ethical meter on. Different people have different perspectives of ethics. For companies that hire employees, what matters more to them is whether an individual has a level of ethics that would match that of the company. But how do they evaluate that?
A majority of the companies don’t incline taking honesty tests during the hiring process. They want to opt for the interview questions to determine which candidates match the level of ethics they need.
Regular questions about truth and honesty allow those applying for a job to answer what they would be doing in a hypothetical situation. Therefore, they can also make up a hypothetical reply.
Some questions would make it easy for the candidates to have their answers ready based on what the interviewer wants to hear. In such a situation, a truthful answer is not necessary. Someone who has no such ethical values or maintains a lower level would most probably lie convincingly.
Behavioral interviewing depends on the argument that your past behavior can be the best indicator of your future behavior. This holds especially for honesty and ethics since these are the behaviors that people usually don’t change at the drop of a hat.
Of course, there are exceptions. However, it’s always in your best interests if you focus on the rule and not the exceptions.
Certain behavioral questions can reach the bottom of an individual’s evidence of ethical behavior. As an interviewer, you can start with a question such as, ‘Tell me a time when you reached office late. Why were you late to work, and how did you make up for it?’ In all probability, the interviewee would never say, ‘I have never been late to work.’ If this kind of answer comes from the other side, you can be certain that they are lying.
But, if the interviewee replies, there have been times when they were late due to the distance between the home and office. And that they always inform the boss about the delay, such answers are genuine. And they tell a lot about what kind of ethical values the interviewee has. You can explore a bit deeper and find out if they have always been late in their lives. This will help you make a detailed analysis of them. Their behavior is not that important until it suits your company’s requirements and is considered acceptable by the company standards.
The Revealing Questions
There are three basic questions that you can ask an interviewee to know all that you want and decide whether they have the same parameter of ethics that your company requires. The first question goes like, ‘Was there a time when you saw or heard someone getting engaged in unethical activities like stealing something or harassing someone? What was your reaction at that time?’.
The second question can be somewhat like, ‘Was there a time when you had to compromise with the quality of a task because of time or cost restraints? What kind of a situation was that, and what was your response?’. Last but not least, ‘Can you describe a moment when you were under pressure to cheat on a report or ignored some unethical behavior? What was the situation like, and what did you do to handle the moment?’ These questions reveal a lot about the interviewee.
You can follow these basic questions with some standard interview questions. You can also ask a few secondary questions to verify that their answers are convincing enough. That way, you can be sure that the candidate you are hiring is a perfect fit for the organization. Remember, there is a lot that you need to consider besides just the educational qualifications when it comes to hiring.