Don’t make this mistake when they call for the interview

Recently a client told me of a firing squad interview experience that warrants a share and checklist.

Thirteen candidates were interviewed in a large room, 20 feet apart, by 12 people who scored them on three questions. Their names were drawn from a hat as to who would go first for all three questions. Candidates could hear other candidate’s responses. There would be a second round of these interviews to reduce a pool of 26 candidates to 4.

Question checklist for when they call to schedule the interview


  • Who will conduct the interview and their title? Who else will be present/title?
  • Where will the actual interview occur? Not just where do you meet the HR professional.
  • How much time is allocated for the interview?
  • What do you see as the biggest challenge of the position and what should I focus on in my preparation?
  • Please send me the complete job description? It may not have been posted online in its entirety.
  • Will there be other candidates interviewed that day? Prefer to go last.

With answers to these questions in hand, you know how to prepare, what to research and what to speak to that day.

My clients receive extensive instruction on interviewing but the most important questions on interview day are the ones you ask. Always end your questions of the interviewer with: “In your mind what is keeping me from being the lead candidate for this role?” You’ll likely know the answer ahead of time so come prepared to address it. WHY YOU and WHY NOW?

Always end your questions of them with: “What is keeping me from being the lead candidate for this role?” You’ll likely know the answer so come prepared.

Mary Lee Gannon, ACC, CAE is an executive coach and corporate CEO who helps busy leaders get off the treadmill to nowhere to be more effective, earn more, be more calm and enjoy connected relationships with the people who matter while it still matters. Watch her FREE Master Class training on Three Things to Transform Your Life and Career Right Now at