Dr. Lowell Hellervik – Reddit AMA Questions and Answers – Part 1

By Posted in - Other Topics on April 29th, 2013 0 Comments

On April 24, 2013, Dr. Lowell Hellervik of OMNIview conducted an “Ask Me Anything on Reddit,” where for two hours he held court and answered questions ranging from talent management to how best to be recognized for advancement … all the way to who is better, the Gophers or the Badgers! OMNIview will post Dr. Hellervik’s responses in a series of blog posts over the next few weeks, but if you’d like to see the whole conversation, the complete AMA with Lowell Hellervik is available at Reddit.

Questions are in italics.

Companies Putting Out Poor Assessments

Dr. Hellervik, I just took a 250-question assessment with Hyatt Hotels, no conversation, nor explanation, no contact at all. The questions had nothing to do with qualifications of job-function, nor relevancy to people’s ability/natural inclination to perform the job. How do you separate yourself from the companies putting out poor assessments?

This is a question that assumes the “250-question assessment” was a “poor” assessment. On the one hand, I understand what you are saying because I assume the questions and questionnaire lacked “face validity”. On the other hand, some tests/questionnaires are extremely difficult to fake BECAUSE the questions lack face validity. Yet the tests predict very well what they are designed to predict. For example, one of the best personality tests in existence asks respondents whether they prefer bathtubs or showers. The response (combined with others) actually suggests a certain personality characteristic.

We do not know whether the Hyatt Hotel questionnaire is one of the latter or whether it is simply a poorly constructed test. Hopefully someone within Hyatt knows the answer to that question.

How is Behavioral Interviewing Different from Other Interviewing Methods?

Why is behavioral interviewing different than how organizations normally do it?

These days there are many organizations that do behavioral interviewing … but for those that don’t, they would often not interview at all but simply meet, greet, get to know job candidates and go by gut feel. Behavioral interviewing has a great deal more structure; it’s organized around competencies and pre-planned questions and has a discipline and framework for the evaluation of behavioral responses, which includes a complete description of circumstances, actions and results.

It’s based on the premise that past behavior is the best indication of future behavior. Questions are designed to elicit descriptions of past behavior in similar situations that would be based on the job.

How is Behavioral Interviewing Superior to Other Interviewing Methods?

To follow up my previous question, are there any statistics that support that behavioral interviewing is superior to other methods?

Yes…there are decades of research on the employment interview! Much of this interview research focuses on the comparitive validity of a structured behavioral interview versus an unstructured interview. The research overwhelmingly shows a significantly superior validity for behavioral interviewing.

Dr. Michael Campion has been particularly active in this type of research, but there are numerous others that are easily found through Google searches.

Mia Saldaneri

About Mia Saldaneri

Mia Saldaneri brings the real life view to OMNI.  She has owned her own small transportation company (yikes!), sold children’s dress-up clothing to boutiques and toy stores, worked for Personnel Decisions ...
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