Most Important Questions to Ask Creative Talent During Interviews

Looking to fill an opening at your creative agency? Find the best fit by asking the right questions.
questions to ask creative talent
By Sarah Rodhouse Jan 28, 2021
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According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, there will be an increase in demand for creative talent in the next few years. If you are one of the many organizations on the hunt for a new creative director, designer, copywriter, or other creative, there are many things to consider when looking at your applicants. You may have already attracted talented individuals with your employee perks and company values, and narrowed them down by their creative skills. This brings you to one of the most important parts of the hiring process: the interview. To ensure you are hiring the candidate with the most talent who will be the best fit for your company, take a look at these sample interview questions for hiring creative talent.

What do you hope to gain from working here?

Questions about your candidate’s career aspirations can show a lot about that person. Look for their answer to revolve around making an impact at your company and building their career to show that they are going to be dedicated to the position. Additionally, this question is a much better alternative to the old-school, “What are your weaknesses?” Instead of putting someone through those tired paces where they’ll have a prepared answer that doesn’t actually tell you anything, asking about a candidate’s aspirations can help them let their guard down, and show you how they really hope to grow and thrive.

What do you think of our brand/site/marketing materials?

This question will test a potential creative’s skills and professionalism. If someone is completely unfamiliar with your company’s marketing materials, it means they didn’t do their homework and are likely not actually committed to your company. This can tell you why this candidate is interested in working for you, because they will likely (hopefully) speak to things that caught their attention when they were researching your company. For those candidates with a truly bold vision, you might also receive some suggestions in response to this question. That can help you understand how this person might speak with a client if they have constructive feedback or ideas to share. 

What has been the most satisfying/proud moment in your career?

This question will give you a look into your prospective team member’s values, as well as their creative skills. The answer to this will show what the person cares about in their career and what they are capable of accomplishing. By identifying what lights a candidate up and makes them excited, you’ll be able to understand if your opening is the right role for them. When you ensure your company’s goals, and the goals of your opening, align with your candidate’s, everyone will be set up for success. 

What brands do you admire?

The brands a creative candidate admires will help you get a feel for their style. For example, if they say Apple or Nike, their style may be more sleek and modern with a big-name mentality. If they answer with a brand like Glossier, they might admire brands who started small and built themselves up via social media. If their taste in brands aligns with yours and the company’s, that can help you understand if you’re speaking the same stylistic language. Don’t discount a candidate who picks a brand that might be outside of your company’s comfort-zone, though — sometimes those fresh ideas are exactly what’s needed to bring new life to your team. 

How do you respond to feedback?

A creative talent’s response to feedback is very important to the structure of your agency’s creative process. A good creative needs to be receptive to constructive criticism, whether it comes from a client, supervisor, or coworker. A professional creative needs to be able to receive feedback to produce the best work possible without pride getting in the way. If a candidate provides an answer that’s a bit too vague, you can follow up by asking them to give you a specific example of a time they received feedback, and what they did.

When do you feel most creative?

Nowadays, many creative agencies have taken a flexible approach to work hours to support their teams’ most productive states. If that is the case for your organization, it can be helpful to understand a potential candidate’s preferences ahead of time so you can structure your teams in such a way to be their most effective. This question can also lead to conversations around the workplace environment and sources of inspiration, which can further help you get to know a candidate and understand if there is a cultural fit there.

Asking these questions to prospective creative talent will help you to gauge how they are as a person and as a creative. It is important to figure out if someone’s workflow and values fit in at your company and with other team members. When you assess the best fit for your opening during the interview process, you’ll ensure your new team member can hit the ground running and be successful.

Before you seek to hire new team members, make sure your existing team is organized and on the same page — CROOW can help. It’s the project management tool that makes creative collaboration a snap!