lorna borenstein

As a job candidate in the hot seat, you’ll probably be the one doing most of the talking.

But if you’re interviewing with Lorna Borenstein, founder and CEO of Grokker, a company that creates online cooking, yoga, and fitness videos, that won’t necessarily be the case.

Borenstein — who previously held VP roles at Yahoo and eBay — told Adam Bryant of The New York Times that she starts every job interview by sharing her life stories.

She does this because her objective is always to help the candidate do as well as possible, she said. “I want the candidate to show their best self. And I think if you’re generous, and you put them at ease by being somewhat vulnerable in opening up first, and modeling the behavior you’re expecting, it really does put people at ease to let them show you who they are, and all that they can do. I think it’s a really poor interview style to try to catch people or trip them up.”

Borenstein said she wants the interviewee to know where she’s from and how she got to be where she is now — and then she wants to hear the same from them.

“I want to understand what makes you tick, what your competencies are, and then hear about examples of when you either got it right, or when you got it wrong, and what you learned from it,” she told Bryant. “I also want to understand why you really want to work here — what is it that we’re going to do for you, and what are you going to do for us? And I also want to understand your long-term aspirations.”

Read the full New York Times interview here. 

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