Interviews: Testing in more ways than one!
Date: 14th November 2015
Posted by:
, , ,

IKEA job interview 1Getting under the skin of a candidate in an interview to figure out if they can really do what they say they can do, is an eternal challenge. IKEA certainly seems to have a novel approach to interviews!

Whilst you are having a little  giggle, it might surprise you to learn that giving a candidate an ‘IKEA test’ will reveal several things about their underlying motivations and working style.

The candidates who are going to love this challenge are likely to have an Options pattern. They don’t need a fixed starting point (as in no instruction manual to follow!) and they love thinking outside the box. If that’s what you want in your new employee, then this is a possible interview test to give them.

On the downside, you might find that they get carried away and never actually finish the chair, as they get distracted by all the possibilities and options available to them to put it together!

The candidates who are going to find this task really testing, are likely to have a Procedures pattern. They prefer to have a starting point, with a manual or step by step guide to follow. This is because they are motivated to follow processes rather than invent them.

If you think the ‘IKEA test’ is a bit extreme (not to mention the health and safety risks), don’t despair! There are much simpler ways of understanding what makes your candidates tick in the interview by just listening to their language patterns or carrying out a LAB Profile.


The Language and Behavioural (LAB) Profile allows you as the interviewer to understand how people make decisions and what is important to them. Starting with the job profile, you are able to analyse what motivations you need people to have, in order to carry out the tasks you need them to do. Then all you need to do is listen out for the corresponding language patterns; the way we speak tells the listener how we are motivated in 14 different ways in a specific context – split into six motivation traits and eight working traits.

The Motivation Traits: These allow you to determine what interests a candidate, what motivates and inspires them and most importantly just what demotivates them!

The Working Traits: In order to get the most out of your employees, it’s important to know what environment they work best in and the tasks that they are strongest at which is what the working traits focus on.

All of this, without a hammer and nail in sight! How beneficial do you think that would be in your business?

If you think your business could benefit from LAB profiling, you can download information on Talent Management using the LAB Profile here or get in touch with Katherine Wiid who works with organisations to select highly motivated staff.