Tell me…


I used to have an interview questionnaire I used with candidates while interviewing account managers at McCann-Erickson. It was my way of systematizing the process so after 10+ candidates, I could be rational and mindful in comparing answers.

One of the questions I really liked, but stopped using, made one of my female interviewees uncomfortable. The question was “Tell me about me.” Until this one candidate, most candidates would either stumble or blow a little smoke at me saying things like “you’re funny” or “you’re successful” (I had a nice office at the time,) but the astute few would have quickly taken in my office and comment about my pictures, books or knick-knacks.  These were the quick studies in people…the observant ones. 
I stopped asking that question when a young lady made me feel like a megalomaniac, maybe even a little dirty. I think she had issues (I sure must have.)  I should never have stopped using that question. It worked. While at McCann I hired some really smart people. Twenty-Somethings who went on to become agency presidents and holding company presidents. My hiring record topped out when I lost the “tell me about me” question.