In the last few weeks, we’ve been hearing a lot about the supposed futility of job interviews, after the perennial article on the subject made the rounds on Slack channels the world over. If you’ve recently tried to hire anyone for your team, you’ve probably sat through a whole slew of interviews, which has made this point all the more painful. In product management, the interview conundrum feels even more acute, because the job often requires a breadth of skills and responsibilities that are hard to test for.

In our poll this week, the majority of you (64%) did not believe that job interviews are good predictors of PM success. Our debaters equivocated, somewhat, but they have the privilege of more than a simple vote.

GIGO

I think that PM interviews are a good example of GIGO - Garbage In, Garbage Out. If you have an interview process without clear competencies that are being tested for, where people review candidates on their "gut takes," and everyone is unclear on the specifics of the role - you end up with bad predictors of future success.  If you have a good process with clearly defined tests and questions, you can minimize risk as much as possible.

Matt Zito

VP Products, Resy

Most of the time

Most of the time yes, if done properly and combined with a test, interviews are effective predictors of success. I think a well-designed test that simulates the actual work is the best way to asses a PM's abilities. But, to determine the personality, the passion for product, and the fit to the company culture - interviews are effective. They should, however, be combined with conversations with former employers and colleagues.

David Schwartz

VP Product, Wix