Failed the 90 second test! Reject? Are you sure?

Most hiring managers know within 90 seconds of the first interview if they will hire or not.  We are considering a situation where this is the first meeting, not someone already known to the interviewer.  

When managers tell me with pride that they make their decisions fast – I get the impression they feel a bit smug and pleased with themselves for having such good ‘intuition’.

Scientists call this making social attributions from faces, and its something we do in a matter of milliseconds.

Guess what? You can not possibly assess the fit of someone for a job in 90 seconds never mind milliseconds, and despite some studies pointing to the apparent accurateness of some facial judgment, it doesn’t translate to assessing someone for job fit.

Sure if they show up wasted, wearing a clown mask,  or in a bikini, scratch them off.

It’s all about you

Our challenge to you is……..  ask yourself what have you learned in 90 seconds aside from extreme behaviors. Your first impressions are much more likely to hold information about you, your cognitive biases, personal likes, and dislikes than about a candidate fit for a role.  

In 90 seconds all you know is how they dress, how they sound, how they look, and maybe how confident they are at interviews. You don’t even know if that confidence (or lack of) extends to other situations.

The 60-minute challenge

We recommend 90 seconds into your next interview,  pause and consider what judgments you have made and spend the remainder of the time looking for data to disprove them.

Let me know how you go, I love to hear about your journey.


aka The BarefootRecruiter

barefoot recruiter consulting

The full series:

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