Generally, we are very inquisitive when we go to a new place or buy a car, a house or an insurance, usually when we plan or even invest our time and money in some products or services of great value. But when we are sitting in an interview, we feel like we are forbidden to talk loudly about our concerns.
If we are sitting on the other side of the table taking the interview, then we can ask as much as we like and about anything we deem is necessary; but if we are the one giving the interview then we must restrict even our basic questions like our remuneration, leave policy, increment policy, and even about our vital rights & health allowances.
We talk a lot about liberties and freedom in everything these days but when it comes to the employees or the interviews we close our eyes and ears. The candidates’ questions are tabooed because we have treated their queries and them below their qualification and merit, if they have dared asking anything sensitive.
These days, professional and decent rights of employees are all eaten up by one thing, ‘work culture’. The employers are exploiting the hype of the hour and taking advantage of the employees by establishing taboos about their basic rights. They are to be thrown out or not given any merit base selection if they sound too questioning. In an attempt to create a professional atmosphere they have forgotten to be humane too. The vital reason of why a person looks for a job is to earn him a decent living and if he can’t question about his monthly salary from the employer during the interview, why should he even accept your job or come to work for you? This in any aspect is not creating a positive vibe for a professional work culture that many employers are obsessed with.
When an employer is conducting an interview he focuses that his recruits are professional, culturally fit, well qualified, socially responsible and accepted, and how he will add up to his strong team but he forgets about the employee’s needs, his personal interest, his family, health, and life.
Taboos are generally advanced by the employers as it works best in their interest. But if you are an employer you can put an effort in curbing this whole scenario at least in your own company. Often candidates are shortlisted and are called for second interview, unknowing how much material benefit they will get out of the offer they are giving the interview for. It is at that moment that you should intervene and begin your interview by clearing out the ambiguity of their salary package. Break the taboo yourself and free them of their burden. This will cater to their basic question and will put them at ease during the rest of the interview. If you are paying better than their expectation, then they will be happy at the offer and will be loyal to you from this very gesture, onward, but if your offer is lesser then their required pay demand, then you could be saving the time for both of you, as time is an asset too.
If you are an employer who wishes for a positive work culture then you should begin with declaring the benefits you have in mind for your employees. For many interviewees you may just become their idealistic employer who wishes to talk about the benefits he has to offer to them. Some people these days also take a leap in this field and mention the salary range and benefits in the job advertisement thus curbing all the taboos and winning the hearts of all the candidates applying for the job.
Sometimes being able to enjoy a big annual holiday is quite an incentive for a candidate that he may just accept your offer and for other people the thing that matters the most is not neither their monthly salary nor their earned leaves, rather they wish that the company they are working for, owns them enough to pay for any health emergency, if one arises. This gives them the assurance that he is being valued and thus remains your loyal too.
To be fair with your recruits or shortlisted candidates, you need to consider yourself in their position. The pressure of taboo questions, job hunt, performance in the interview, and screening of the interview panel is all too much on any person’s nerve. When you will think about their position, only then you would be able to put them at ease which is very important for their overall performance in the interview.
In short, the fear of taboo questions for a candidate can never let him be natural in the interview. It’s time we break ourselves free from these useless theories and start respecting the rights of the candidates too.