The Halo Effect

The candidate is friendly so he is a good manager.

The candidate speaks well so she is good at sales.

The candidate dressed well so he is professional.

Psychologists call this the Halo Effect; a type of cognitive bias.

Essentially, we allow our overall impression of a candidate to impact our evaluation of specific traits and it’s especially dangerous when recruiting.

The way to counteract this is simple.

Be clear. List down your job requirements. Have a list of must have and nice to have criteria.

Be structured. Organize your interviews and prepare your questions to assess candidates against each requirement.

Be thorough. Ask probing questions, utilize behavioral based interviewing skills and other techniques to uncover candidate skills and abilities.

Finally, don’t forget to conduct your reference checks.


Navin Muruga