Executive Hiring Manager Training

virtual or in-person training for VP-level teams

Need credible, high-quality, smart interview training for your executive management team?

We’re here to help. Since 2005, we’ve been building custom hiring manager training for startups to leading companies around the world. As part of that work, we’ve realized that the training offered to your interviewers and hiring managers doesn’t always work for your most senior VPs and C-level executives. 

We custom build interviewing workshops for executive teams.  Sure, it’s focused on good interviewing practices to help hire top leaders.  But more than that, it gets your executive team engaged, leading your company’s hiring philosophy, championing diversity, and building a culture of hiring accountability to ensure their leaders are selecting the right talent for your organization. 

“The feedback from everyone at CEO staff who attended Friday’s session was fantastic.  It hit exactly the right note in terms of providing practical skills in the context of an overall culture shift in the way we want to hire people going forward. Not only are the workshops building skills, they are setting a tone, creating a playbook for hiring across the company, defining a consistent hiring bar, embedding our culture in all aspects of it and creating it all in the most agile way possible. Truly excellent work.”

– CHRO of Fortune 1000 company, note to her direct reports about our work together

Typical agendas are 4 hours (2 x 2 hour modules), with discussion and small group exercises that focus on…

  • Discussion: YTD hiring, business context, hiring goals, diversity goals, and hiring risks as we scale
  • Discussion: Expectations of executive-level hiring managers to keep a high hiring bar, improve diversity, and role-model excellent hiring practices
  • What is our company way of hiring, and how do we scale it?
  • Discussion: What makes great leadership hires great?
  • Our hiring criteria and interviewing framework
  • Discussion: Diversity – widening our aperture, championing diversity
  • Exercise: Practice building questions and what good answers sound like
  • What do “senior” (executive) answers sound like?
  • Aligning your teams on target talent profiles and hiring manager expectations to get us great talent
  • Practice: Advanced interviewing techniques – beyond behavioral interviewing 101
  • Discussion: What’s trainable, what’s not trainable?
  • Overcoming biases
  • Making quality hiring decisions
  • Selling top talent throughout the interview process
  • Evangelizing our high hiring bar

We custom-build the training content to align with your goals, your culture, and executive hiring manager development opportunities.  We can deliver the training in-person in your offices over ½ day, or virtually, via a tool like Zoom, over multiple days, broken into 2-hour modules.

Our training workshop includes presentation, paired-practice, small group question exercises, and small group discussions, all credibly delivered by one of our Senior Consultants, who each have 12+ years of experience in corporate recruiting.  We kick off the engagement to build your training with focus groups to learn more about your current state, internal interviewing and selection challenges, existing internal best practices, hiring principles and philosophy, “what good looks like” definitions that hold true across all roles (usually, core competencies or behaviors based on your values), and candidate experience feedback.  The focus groups include calls with executives, diversity leaders, TA/recruiting leaders, and CHRO. This gives us insights we can use to tailor the training so that your executive teams work on immediately-actionable challenges, and walk away feeling more skilled, more confident, and more aligned as they work to hire the best leadership talent for your company.

We also offer our custom interviewing workshops focused on mid-level hiring managers and interviewers.

After the training, interviewers and hiring managers head back to their desks with easy-to-use guides to help them better understand “what good looks like,” interview, select, and sell. This is not some academic workshop focused on labeling interviewing techniques or basic behavioral interviewing 101. It’s very “how to,” but delivered in a smart way that engages even your most experienced executives.

  • Interview guides aligned to your executive leader competency model
  • Interview guide to support your diversity efforts, including sample question to evaluate inclusion in leader-level candidates
  • Hiring Manager Maturity Model with Culture of Recruiting Recommendations

Our focus is on training, sure – but almost more importantly, it’s on driving alignment with your executive teams. When your leaders and executive recruiters are aligned on your hiring principles, your hiring bar and competencies (aka “what good looks like”), your approach to diversity, and your process, you get high-bar hiring, at scale.

We build interview guides and teach a methodology that goes beyond behavioral interviewing 101, because we know your executive hiring managers are smart, and often not very tolerant of basic training. Our workshops are credibly led by former, successful corporate recruiting leaders who now consult with many of the top hiring teams in the world, and bring core and advanced best practices to your busy leaders.

Exercises? Of course. Participants get to practice what they’re learning, while they’re learning.

Post-training help? Yes, your interviewers will receive practical tools and guides designed to help them in their next interview. These are not 12-page forms – these are short, smart, editable guides designed to reinforce the methodology shared in the workshop. Additionally, we work closely with the HR/recruiting leadership team to recommend post-workshop process changes, including helping recruiters partner better with executive hiring managers to set up the right interviewing process, select the right interviewers, facilitate the right hiring decisions, and leverage the right techniques to evaluate and sell top talent – this is part of our “making it stick” process.

We’re all about helping you make this more than just a training event…we want this to be part of your overall strategy to raise the bar on the talent you hire, raise the bar on hiring team effectiveness, raise the bar on candidate experience, and improve diversity ROI.

This custom training is designed for teams of 10+ executives. VPs, SVPs, C-level executives. Your heads of recruiting – especially your head of exec recruiting – should also attend.

We conduct focus group calls with your executive teams before we design your training. This helps us to collaborate with you – the head of HR or recruiting – to customize the content to their needs and ensure the training is practical, highly relevant, and credibly delivered.

A typical workshop will have 10-20 hiring managers in each workshop, so that we can keep everyone engaged, and keep small-group discussions and exercises small enough so that everyone feels like they’re contributing to your in-person or virtual training. If you have a team larger than 20 people, we’d deliver multiple sessions.

This training is built for corporate recruiting teams only. If you work for an agency or RPO firm and you like our approach, or if you’re looking for individual training, you can check out our resources for solo recruiters, agencies, and small teams here.

of hiring managers rated the overall
program a 4 or 5 on a 5-point scale
of hiring managers would recommend
it to their peers

“Excellent!  This is an important component of our plan to achieve our mission, and I’ll be requiring all of my hiring managers to attend this training.  5/5.”

VP/Hiring Manager, Electronic Arts

Who hires us?

We’ve built executive interview training for companies like Nubank in Brazil, Gymshark in the UK, and Autodesk globally. Each one of these companies had their CEO participate in the full training, along with their directs and their directs’ VPs. We’ve also built out hiring manager training – for all levels of hiring managers and interviewers – for companies like EA Games, PepsiCo, Booking, Micron, Starbucks, Target, Yahoo!, and Dolby. Leading companies around the world choose Recruiting Toolbox as a partner when they’re looking to raise the bar on who they hire and how they hire via custom interviewing and hiring manager training.

Why choose our custom interview training workshop for your hiring teams?

Great interviewing starts with a deep understanding of “what good looks like.” We help you define your hiring standards, and teach your exec-level hiring managers to translate their generic job description language into real hiring criteria, and then interview in a way that gathers evidence of performance, attracts and hires talent from diverse backgrounds, and makes hiring decision tradeoffs that align to your hiring principles.

We know that you need to ensure that you communicate your expectations for a fair process, free from biased hiring decisions and supportive of your goals to diversify your teams. We help companies embed diversity into every aspect of the training – it’s not just a 20-minute module…it’s part of how we define quality, how we align interviewing teams on what good looks like, how we interview, how we build our candidate experience, how we facilitate hiring decisions, and how we make tradeoffs. We go beyond the basics of unconscious bias to widen the aperture, reframe traditional thinking that pedigree is a proxy for performance, and ensure we move away from bias-filled terms like culture fit and high potential.

We consult with you early on to help build out the right alignment, interviewing, decision making, and candidate experience processes you need to select and hire the leader level talent you want.

We consult with you early on, leading focus group conversation across execs, recruiting, HR and diversity, so that we can custom-build what you need; you guide us as we co-build the training agenda. We directly address your biggest challenges, and ensure the training is branded and delivered in a way that maps to your culture and existing people programs.

Our focus is on training – but just as importantly, it’s on driving alignment with your executive teams. When your executives, hiring managers and recruiting teams are aligned on your hiring principles, your hiring bar and behaviors/competencies (aka “what good looks like”), your approach to diversity, and your process, you get high-bar hiring, at scale. So this training not only builds skills and confidence in your executive team, it also helps to create a culture around your hiring bar, as we encourage your executives to role model, reward, and build accountability mechanisms to ensure the hiring managers on their teams employ the interviewing and selection practices we share in the training workshop.

Your interviewers will receive practical guides designed to help them in their next interview. These are not 12-page forms – these are short, smart, editable guides designed to reinforce the methodology shared in the workshop and provide sample, custom questions that align to your company’s overall hiring criteria.

Our training programs are credibly delivered by former corporate Recruiting Leaders, not generic trainers. We have experience as corporate recruiting leaders, as trainers, and as hiring managers who understand how to engage smart exec teams in training, and ensure what we deliver is actionable and tailored to their needs. Learn more about our team.

After the training has been delivered, we work closely with the HR/recruiting leadership team to recommend changes to ensure the best practices stick. How do we get recruiters and executive leaders to use these new behaviors/competencies and move away from poorly defined terms like “culture fit,” how do we drive adoption of these new processes designed to widen the aperture, how do we accelerate speed? We can help.

Our training delivery options allow you to choose the format that works best for your team:

  • Live, virtual delivery

  • In-person delivery

  • Train-the-trainer delivery to help you scale internally

Download a PDF of our Training Delivery Overview document to learn more about each of these options.

Hear John Vlastelica explain how we help larger organizations scale training through our Train-the-Trainer program.

“Excellent!  This is an important component of our plan to achieve our mission, and I’ll be requiring all of my hiring managers to attend this training.  5/5.”

– VP/Hiring Manager, Electronic Arts

“Highly engaging and relevant content for the needs of the organization. Would highly recommend.”

– Senior Director, Talent Management, Beyond Meat

“Actually, really useful with a lot of interaction. I will work with my talent partners to embed this into our way of interviewing and hiring. I’ve already recommended it to my peers. 5/5!”

– Head of Systems, Gymshark

“Excellent tools and recommendations on how to improve hiring.  Very good, 5/5!”

– Country Manager, Nubank

Looking for something for your regular hiring managers? Check out our core Interview Training for Hiring Managers, License to Hire (How to be a Successful Hiring Manager) Training, our Diversity Focused Hiring Manager Training, and our Bar Raisers Training. All of these custom workshops are designed to improve how your hiring teams hire.

Next Steps

Frequently Asked Questions

To be honest, if you’re seeking an inexpensive 1- or 2-hour lunch and learn overview on basic behavioral interviewing techniques, we’re probably not a good match, as you can find free resources online or hire an HR Generalist or general trainer to deliver a quick overview program that teaches people to ask “tell me about a time” questions.

Our custom Predicting Success program leverages behavioral interviewing, for sure, but goes well beyond that to deliver an evidence-based interviewing methodology and tools that teach people how to hire against the skills, behaviors/competencies. achievements, and motivators needed to be a success at YOUR company – not just general one-on-one interviewing techniques/questions, but a program that’s custom-built around your hiring bar and criteria, arms your interviewers with questions and answers to help them evaluate past and present performance, and gives you a valid and reliable interviewing process that not only leads to the right tradeoffs/decisions, but generates more diversity and creates a great candidate experience, as well. All customized to the executive level hiring manager.

A typical workshop will have up to 20 interviewers and/or hiring managers in each workshop, so that we can keep everyone engaged, and keep small-group scenario groups small enough where everyone feels like they’re contributing in your in-person or virtual training. If you have a team larger than 20 people, we’d deliver multiple sessions. Most clients ask us to create a training for the CEO and their directs, and then additional training for the VPs and Directors, and then training for all middle manager hiring managers and interviewers.
Normally, that’s not a big enough team. But for executive level hiring training, we can accommodate. We even delivered a 1:1 executive interview training to a CEO and his CHRO once. Ideally, we’d want and need a team of at least 10 – your entire C-level executive team with some VPs.
Yes, we work with big global companies like EA Games, Autodesk, Booking, Micron, and PepsiCo – they all needed us to deliver multiple sessions to hiring teams in offices in different countries. Sometimes clients will fly their hiring teams into their regional hubs, and our consultants will travel there to deliver the training in-person over 1-2 days. Sometimes we’ll build out the training for virtual delivery, leveraging a tool like Zoom with virtual breakout rooms, and deliver sessions as modules of 2 hours each over several days and time zones.

Sorry, it’s not.  This training is built for corporate hiring manager teams only.  If you like our approach, you can check out some of our free interviewing resources here.

It depends on the scope, but fees start at about $45,000.
Our workshop facilitators are former corporate recruiting leaders who bring real practitioner credibility to the training. We’ve all started out as hands-on recruiters, and have applied the techniques and best practices shared in this workshop to earn the right to be a Talent Advisor to the execs we’ve supported as recruiting leaders.  Your executives will know – right away – that our team has walked the talk. We’ll bring the confidence – and humility (no big egos here!) – that comes from years of working to improve bad interviewing processes, coaching interviewers, evaluating and improving candidate experience, and driving adoption of new interviewing best practices across global orgs.
Our founder actually co-built and co-led the Bar Raiser program at Amazon, where he worked as head of tech recruiting.  He also built out Amazon’s Making Great Hiring Decisions interview training.  So, yes, we’re very familiar with that program, and have even helped other organizations implement Bar Raiser-like programs in a way that makes sense for their culture.  We’ve also helped an organization implement Google-style Hiring Committees.  In fact, we’ve presented at conferences on the pros and cons of different interviewing and quality control mechanisms – Bar Raisers, Hiring Committees, and Pipeline/University Interview models. You can watch a recorded webinar where John Vlastelica, our founder, talks through pros and cons of different programs used by the big tech companies to keep the bar high and improve hiring decisions here.

Yes, but it’s not tailored to executive interviewing.

Our scalable, online video-based training (delivered by John Vlastelica, creator of our program, Predicting Success) has 100+ 3-5 minute episodes covering all things interviewing, complete with quizzes and completion measurement tools. Learn more about our online training, hosted by Social Talent. Companies like IBM, Siemens, Cisco, and Ferrero have leveraged our online training to upskill their hiring managers.

Sorry, we’re not set up to offer 1:1 training.  We build custom training for teams of 12+ people.  However, you’re welcome to check out some of our free resources – including training-quality recorded webinarsbest practice articles, and expert pages.

Behavioral Interview Training Workbook for Hiring Managers and Interviewers

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