How can a good question create a bond of trust and friendship? Today we’ll show you examples of questions that lay the groundwork for the trust needed for a good evaluation of a candidate. When the potential candidate chooses to evaluate themselves, they can find themselves looking at a fork in the road, suddenly. Trust-builder questions can lead them to eventually make decisions about an important step in their work-life, if asked with boldness and patience.

Here is an opening gambit: ‘On a scale of 1-10, 10 is ‘I love this place’ and 1 is ‘get me out of here now!’ – where are you?

To be able to influence a person requires the courage and the skill to ask the right questions. Sometimes the person will not answer such a question directly. ‘Can we talk later? Not in a good spot at the moment.’ That’s all the answer you need. They want to talk, just not now.

‘You’re a seven; what would you need to make it a nine or ten?’ Now you’re asking them for their pain points, for what might drive them to look elsewhere.

“Why would you want to make a change now?”

“What are you looking for in your next opportunity?

“What do you want to stay away from in your next opportunity?”

We connect with potential candidates by getting to know them, and understanding their current situation. If they are willing to open up, we have a better chance to help them. And, you can start to get some specifics on timing:

  • “What would keep you from making a change in the next few weeks?” (such as a major project?)
  • “If you were to leave today, what would you leave on the table?” (such as a bonus payout soon)
  • “What is the one thing, besides money, your company could offer you to make you stay?” (such as a promotion to partner)

And whether changing employers has been something they’ve been considering for a while:

  • “Have you talked with your spouse or children about the possibility of a change? Their thoughts?”
  • “What else do you have going on? Have you interviewed other places? What happened?
  • “Where have you sent your resume? What other recruiters have your resume? Do you know where they have sent it?”
  • “Do you have any offers pending, or recently received, or turned down?”

Good recruiters use questions that help them understand if this is the right candidate for the role, and if the timing is right, which helps clients understand their candidates before they even talk with them.


As a business owner, executive or HR VP, have you ever considered how difficult access is to the A players, and how you cannot ask the best candidates the questions that might intrigue them to come your way, questions that an executive recruiter asks every day. Dan Toussant, Executive Recruiter, discusses some of those questions in episode.

Contact Dan through his website, Dan Toussant & Associates, on email, or send a text to 330-704-8789 for more recruiting information.

Privacy Settings
We use cookies to enhance your experience while using our website. If you are using our Services via a browser you can restrict, block or remove cookies through your web browser settings. We also use content and scripts from third parties that may use tracking technologies. You can selectively provide your consent below to allow such third party embeds. For complete information about the cookies we use, data we collect and how we process them, please check our Privacy Policy