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Interviewing Dedicated Employees with Projective Tests

December 18, 2013 by Mainak Biswas under Offshore outsourcing Strategy584 views
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Gone are the days when the fate of business was only decided by either self willed freelancers or local employees. Now dedicated employees are the ones who call the shots. And they do it rather well. Dedicated employees have given employers a chance to explore a whole new dimension in the realm of recruitments, but like any other recruitment process hiring dedicated professionals can prove to be extremely taxing and tedious, if not done skillfully. Even though most of the dedicated employees are remote employees, recruiting them still adds to the woes of an employer because of a lack of direct supervision.

Hiring and interviewing dedicated employees

Usually dedicated employees work from an economically cheaper location and most of them work from their parent offices, which still makes it important for employers to evaluate the psyche and the acumen of a candidate for the desired job. Recruiters must keep in mind that getting the right person for a job is as important as assigning the right job to the right person, which calls for a deep and sound understanding of human psyche. While recruiting you are not expected to be a pro at understanding human behavioral patterns and psyche, but there are a few ground rules which can help you take the right decision and forestall the financial implications that come along with a wrong decision.

Now, as we proceed, it must be made clear that interviewing dedicated employees isn’t a cakewalk and assessing a candidate’s strengths and capabilities without a psychological evaluation is mostly futile. Basic psychological evaluation done at the stage of interviewing can work wonders for you in deciding whether the candidate fits the bill or not. Psychological assessment can very well avert the woes that come from hiring a misfit candidate.

Employers with little idea about human psyche find getting a grip on psychological assessment extremely unnerving. To ease this discomfort, you can hire a clinical psychologist. Moreover, most of the assessments listed below can only be administered by a registered psychologist. Most of these assessments are done with the help of projective tests which are known to reveal underlying cognitions and unconscious matter that form the basis for understanding human behavior.These tests help in understanding a person’s character and his response to basic stimuli, which in turn can be used to predict the person’s behavior in certain situations. A good understanding of a candidate’s behavior can go a long way in making the right decision; it can not only save you from spending sleepless nights in the fear of not being able to get your work done, but also increase the productivity of the company.

Here are 4 of the most important projective tests that you could use to hire dedicated employees:

• The Rorschach Inkblot Test

This technique is an indispensible part of psychological assessment. Created by Swiss psychologist, Hermann Rorschach, this psychological test involves interpretation of inkblots to analyze a person’s personality and emotional functioning. This is widely popular for determining a person’s thought disorder especially when the person is reluctant to discuss his thought process, a similar situation is more likely to occur during an interview where candidates intentionally veil their true appearances and try to appear idyllic. This psychological test can be used to crack open through them and analyze their emotions. This test is believed to furnish in-depth knowledge about the personality structure of a candidate, which can help in determining a suitable job role for the candidate to optimize the productivity.

While interviewing it is extremely important to understand a candidate’s capabilities and his disposition towards the job in question, this can be achieved with Rorschach. Selecting the wrong candidate can not only spell doom, but can also invite stress which is completely uncalled for. Make sure this psychological test is practiced by a registered clinical psychologist.

• Thematic Apperception Test

Another personality assessment test which is famous for its promising results is the Thematic Apperception Test. This helps to determine a person’s disposition for a particular job or occupation and also throws light on the motivational stimuli for a candidate. With the help of this test a trained clinical psychologist can gauge a candidate’s need for achievement and power by evoking the subconscious state. More often than not, candidates have to take up this test when they apply for jobs related to military, academics, law enforcement and bureaucracy. Clearly, for such jobs astuteness is more importance than intelligence, which can be easily evaluated by such projective tests.

This test involves interpreting 10 out of a total 31 cards. All of these cards have pictures of people in different situations. These pictures are necessarily thought provoking and are capable of varying interpretations, they are designed so to evoke underlying thoughts and emotions of the candidates. The subject of this test i.e. the candidate must interpret the images in his own way and develop a story based on the picture shown. A psychologist may also ask the interviewee to describe a blank TAT card.

In an interview, one important quality that every recruiter looks for is a candidate’s ability to solve problems which in recent times has become a prerequisite, lest the employer grumble under his breath with frustration. Being an employer you do not want to address all the trivial problems of your employees, hence most of the recruiters make sure that the dedicated employees that they hire have some knack for problem solving. Thematic Apperception Test is a great tool to explore the problem solving ability of a person and hence it has been mandated while selection of employees for important jobs related to international and national importance.

• Draw-a-Person Test

Earlier the use of this test was only limited to kids for getting a better judgment of their personality traits, but later it was developed and modified to measure the intelligence levels in adults. This psychometric test can also reveal the differences in personalities of people, a tool which comes handy while analyzing whether a candidate’s personality matches with that of the employer or not. For a hassle free employee-employer relationship it is essential to have some common basic personality traits and if this can be found out while interviewing a candidate, there’s nothing like it!

As the name suggests, a typical Draw-a-Person test is a drawing based test, the subject is asked to draw pictures of humans, as they are perceived by him. According to the experts, analysis of these pictures with the help of few predefined aspects can not only reveal personality traits and intelligence levels of the subject, but also throw light on obscured traits like sexuality.

Unlike other psychometric tests, Draw-a-Person test can add a fun element to interviews and is not intimidating. Most of the candidates who appear an interview would hardly consider this a test and are more likely to give an honest response. It has also proven to be extremely effective in case of people with communication problems and can downplay their anxiety during an interview.

• Sentence Completion Test

The basic purpose of using projective tests in an interview is to judge the responses of a suitable candidate to ambiguous stimuli. These unpretentious responses are believed to reveal the unconscious aspects of the subject’s personality, which even he might be aware of. Sentence completion test is another test that can spill the beans about a candidate’s personality, but this speaks little about the intelligence levels.

In this test the subject is presented with the beginning of a sentence and is asked to complete the sentence in whichever way he likes. The beginnings allotted to subjects are made as vague as possible to maximize the number of projections making them suitable for any emotional projection. For example, “Few people…” is more likely to provide more projections as compared to “Few people in economic crunch tend to…”. This test can project the intellectual capacity and the reasoning ability of the candidates shortlisted by you for an interview.

Most of the people appearing an interview find this test very amusing and would readily provide inputs which then can be analyzed by a clinical psychologist to come up with conclusive judgments. This psychometric test can be conveniently used in telephonic interviews; an interviewer can give a “beginning” to a candidate and ask him to make a sentence out of it without letting him know that this is a part of psychological assessment. As most of the interviews for hiring dedicated employees are conducted over the phone, this serves as an excellent way for psychological assessment of candidates.


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