Roman is a great guy, but…



Everyone has their own interviewing technique that supposedly helps them untie the Gordian Knot of human personality. In reality only numbers, metrics, KPIs, regular check-ups and structured feedback can give you a full picture and that’s rarely possible in a brief period of time that you have at your disposal during face-to-face interviews.

Of course, there are ways to make this whole experience less painful for the employer and there is one question I use in interviews that gives me a much clearer indication of what the person sitting opposite me is actually like.

The question is: “Everyone says [name of the candidate] is a great person, but…”

Whether a candidate is prepared for this question or not – you get really interesting answers that give you a lot more information about them, than any number of tricky Goldman Sachs questions ever could.  

It would have been hypocritical of me to write this post and not write my own “BUT”… so here it is:

Everyone says Roman is a great person, but soft.

Not physically or mentally (I’m tough as nails with both), but when it comes to people. I become emotionally attached to people and my inability to be ruthless when we need to part ways is my biggest impediment. But I’m working on it.

As usual, I’m trying to outsmart my amygdala by building processes around tough decisions that would leave only numbers and KPIs as the main decision making markers. Halfway there!  

However, I went a step further and asked my team for anonymous feedback. Not many volunteered, but you have to make do with what you have 🙂

So, Everyone says Roman is a great person, but

  • BUT he doesn’t drink much with his co-workers.
  • BUT he swims away in the streams of his thoughts and consciousness, when he tries to convey to us simple things.
  • BUT he is unstoppable when it comes to work.
  • BUT he is too good. Any extreme is not always good!
  • BUT he is loyal. Sometimes too loyal.
  • BUT he asked us to take this survey.
  • BUT he doesn’t eat biscuits – which is just weird.

Could have been worse, right?


by Roman Grigoriev

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