Your Office Manager is moving on in a few weeks and this is a key position to fill. You do a bit of advertising and a good number of people apply for the job.
You do some initial screening with a phone interview, maybe even a second phone interview. But now it’s time to interview candidates in person.
Does the candidate know exactly what YOUR Office Manager does? This is a good place to start, as candidate Mary may have a very different idea than candidate Alex.
It wouldn’t hurt to ask first.
If you get a response that comes really close to what you need, that’s pretty good. But your answers will likely be quite varied.
And then you tell them exactly what your Office Manager will be responsible for on a daily basis. You may want to have this written down ahead of time and you could hand that to each candidate to read. You could even read it verbatim to each candidate. No one is judging.
So you’re closing in on a point of understanding of what YOUR Office Manager does and what his/her responsibilities are.
You could then lean back in your chair — your chair does have this flexibility, right? — and ask:
“Alex, now that we’re in sync on what the Office Manager position is and what its duties are, is there a different job that would suit you better?”
Alex may not be prepared for this question. And that’s okay. We’re eager to find out one way or the other.
Alex may say, “Well, I’m more suited to be a salesperson so I guess I could use my sales skills to get the staff to happily carry out their duties. But I am keen on getting a good-paying job asap and I believe I can be your Office Manager.”
Mary may say, “No, I am 100% perfectly suited to be your Office Manager.”
You could thank Alex for being candid and if it’s not a long haul to train up your Office Manager, he could be your guy.
With Mary, you could simply ask, “Why do you feel that way?”
Tom may tell you he’s quite multi-talented, that he’s perfectly suited to be your Office Manager but he could also excel for you in Billings and Collection.
Linda may offer a plea to give her a shot, that she promises you won’t be disappointed.
How much previous experience each individual has as an Office Manager would definitely be a factor, but in this day and age, you may not get former Office Managers coming in to apply.
So, let’s find out if they feel they’re better suited to something else. If nothing else, you may like the candid answers you get. And you may gain a nice nugget of insight that will help you make your decision.
As the law varies in each area, please check with an attorney to ensure you are applying these tips within the law.
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