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A striking recommendation regarding who interviews attorneys for a position in the department

Not that much hiring is going on, but for the straggling few departments that have an opportunity to add someone, consider this recommendation about interviews: “It’s more important to choose the right assessors than to focus on the assessment technique.” The Harv. Bus. Rev., Vol. 86, May 2009 at 81 stresses this point: “Getting the wrong people involved in your hiring process increases the risk not only of hiring an unsuitable candidate but also of rejecting a good candidate. The worst interviewers actually have a slightly negative effect – that is, following their recommendations will lead to a worse decision than simply hiring a candidate from the pool at random.”

So, choose who interviews attorneys very carefully (See my post of Jan. 1, 2006 on past behavioral interviewing; April 23, 2008: video interviews; April 7, 2006: distractions of the interviewee’s looks or height; Sept. 3, 2008: six suggestions for effective interviews; Oct. 1, 2006: shorten the interview process; and Jan. 1, 2006: competency interviews compared to IQ tests.). At the other end, by the way, try to talk with everyone who leaves (See my post of Aug. 24, 2005: exit interviews.).

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One response to “A striking recommendation regarding who interviews attorneys for a position in the department”

  1. Janette Levey Frisch says:

    I could not agree more with this post! In order to properly assess a candidate’s fit for an in-house law position, one must really have an understanding of what the position entails and what it takes to perform the functions of that position well. One must also be familiar with how attorneys think. Often the problem is compounded by the fact that the non-attorneys making the decisions and/or recommendations think because they know some of the buzz words or know a little bit about applicable legal concepts that they are then fit to assess a lawyer’s candidacy, only to find out too late that they are not…