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It’s quite likely, all things considered, that if you’re a small business owner, you’ll end up in a position one day where your business has expanded to the point of needing additional team members.

Of course, hiring staff isn’t always that easy and straightforward — and especially not if you’re new to the whole thing, and have previously run your business completely solo.

There’s a lot that goes into hiring the right team member, ranging from drawing up the best possible contract, to understanding the logistics involved, and getting a clear sense of what, exactly, you’ll need your new team member to do for you.

Of the most important parts of the whole process, however, is likely to be the interview. For that reason, having a good collection of interviewing techniques at hand may well be critical.

Here are some tips for conducting good interviews when hiring staff.

Prepare in advance

Preparing for the interview in advance is very important. You can’t be caught off guard, or find yourself in a situation where you make a fool of yourself due to not having a list of relevant and meaningful questions to ask.

Plan every detail of the interview out carefully. Arrange interviews in batches for particular days and times of day which are convenient for you. Be setup early before the first interviewee arrives. Consider questionnaires, trick questions, and more.

Keep the job description up-to-date, and ensure that your interviewees are going to have a decent sense of what to expect when they enter the room.

The interview itself takes time out of your day, and time out of your prospective employee’s day. Show some respect to that fact by organizing things so that the event is likely to be as fruitful and productive as possible.

Try to keep it professional, not personal

When you’re hiring someone to work in your business, ensuring that they have the right sort of personality for the place is important. But beyond ensuring that you can work with them without butting heads all the time, you should make a concerted effort to keep things professional, rather than allowing them to become personal.

You might find one of the people you’re interviewing especially attractive, or especially unattractive, for example. And although you probably believe this would never impact your decision, human psychology can be strange like that.

Be on guard against irrelevant personal topics, and keep things professional.

Keep your standards realistic

If you’re a small business owner, in particular, the act of hiring your first employee can seem truly monumental. For that reason, you may find yourself getting carried away with a long list of over-the-top requirements for even the most basic applicant to meet.

But you need to keep your standards realistic. Outline the skills, qualifications, etc. That are essential for the role, but don’t arbitrarily decide that whoever you hire will need to have 2 MBAs and at least a decade of experience in similar roles.

Try to get to the core principles of what the role entails, and keep your standards realistic.