I am God... said the Interviewer
Nothing less. The power to make or break. The power to evaluate, pass judgement. Hold the future of a human-being in the palm of the hand. Act superior. Look down upon. Condescending to agree, but ...yes; always with a 'but'.
The person across the table may be better-read, more qualified, proficient...And is really sitting there because 'we need the talent' in the first place. Talent that we are losing. Talent that is hard to find. And we have also done the 1st and 2nd short-lists ourselves. But...come interview time, and most interviewers seem to don an aura of superiority. Adopt God-like stature.
(It's a moot point whether God would do that at all :-)
(But it definitely is rare to come across somebody who says & believes "I need to be a better interviewer")
Some time back, I had the pleasant experience of realizing this. I was sitting in front of an interviewer.
Here is how it started.
"Ravi" he said, "I am not good with interviews, so let's keep this as a discussion thing...or a meeting".
And then he went on. "Actually I don't give myself the right to pass judgment on a fellow human being. Your resume' speaks for itself, and your having worked in such good companies, is very helpful from my point of view. Fact is, the colleges you've been through surely did most of the basic checking".
I was beginning to warm up to this guy.
"Now, if you are all keyed up and tense, I may not get to see you at your best. If you try to perform to meet my expectations, it gets messy, because you don't really know what I'm looking for. And then, I will get to see what you want to show, and not necessarily what is there". That made sense.
"Now, look at it this way. Would you like me to be like that? I could easily make up some window dressing that will encourage you to join us". This I had seen and experienced before.
He continued, "This meeting is about 'fitment', and let me tell you what I mean. We want to enjoy having you here with us, and add to our success. Similarly, we want you to enjoy being with us, and be more successful with us. That's it. That's what I mean by fitment".
"But Sir" I said, trying to get my piece in. "But, how will I know what the decision is".
"Good point, Ravi. This process should help us, both you and I, to make up our mind on whether this will be a right 'fit'. It will happen more easily if both of us are 'authentic'. Both don't try and 'sell' anything to each other. Both don't put on a charade, or make-believe. This way, when ground reality hits us later on in our work-life, we would have the right to say "I had told you so...and you walked into this knowingly".
Now... this was more like the 'God' in my own mind.
Graceful without being patronizing. Straight without being hurtful. Looking at the future, feet firmly planted in reality. Rationally emotional. Empathetic & transparent. Deciding today for a better tomorrow.
The rest is history.