Christi Howard headshot Written by: Christi Howard

4 things to think about before interviewing executives

Interviewing executives is a complex process and good preparation is key. Are you well prepared to deliver a great candidate experience? This is someone who will help you execute your vision for the company and will make a big impact. By preparing well for an executive interview, it is highly likely you will make a great hire.

Executive businessman sitting at a table during an interview

Here are 4 big things you need to be thinking about before interviewing executives for your company.

  1. Implementing Change

Whether or not you intend on this candidate changing anything within the company, you’ll want a good understanding of if and how they’ve done it before. Have they implemented change within a company before? How did it go? These are great interview questions to ask.

  1. Decision-Making Skills

Any good leader is going to need to make some major decisions within the company. Are they comfortable doing so? Are their decisions usually good ones? You’ll want a good understanding of how quickly they can make a decision and how often it’s the “right” one (or at least, what they’ve learned from wrong decisions). 

  1. Capacity to Deliver Results

Have they set strategic goals before and met those goals? What did they do when they didn’t meet goals? Any leadership position needs to drive results and when interviewing executives you need to have an understanding of how well they’ve done this before. You expect results. Can they deliver?

  1. Leadership Skills

There is so much to leadership skills you need to understand before making a hire. Most importantly, it comes down to people and relationships. Leadership positions are not about tasks and skills. What do others say about them and their leadership? Do people follow them (Which also brings up the point of asking if they are intending on bringing any previous employees over to the new company)? 

Are you interested in enhancing your executive interviewing skills? Many of Handler’s clients ask questions about interviewing. We invite you to download a recent Handler Report: How to Use an Interview as a Competitive Advantage. We believe great interview skills are attributes of a leader worth following.

If you have any questions as you set out to interview an executive, feel free to reach out to our team