At this stage we’ve all had a good amount of interview experience. Whether you’ve been an interviewee or an interviewer you are aware of all the tricky questions. They are frustrating to answer and many times just as frustrating for the interviewer as he realizes they do little in helping him reach a final decision.

Here are three common types of question you may want to ask as an interviewer, but they will lead you nowhere. We’ve also included some alternatives to give you better insight into the candidate.

Questions You Know the Answers To

It doesn’t help much to ask a person to list his experiences job-by-job or ask what schools he has attended and classes he took. All of these answers are already on paper and if you educate yourself properly on the candidate beforehand, you will already know these things.Instead, ask questions that allow the candidate to elaborate on certain parts of his experiences. For example, “Which of these projects that you’ve listed will help you the most in your adjustment to this position?” You want to connect dots and see how he believes his past experiences will translate to the job.

Strange Questions to Gauge Personality

You won’t discover much about a candidate by asking him his favorite color or asking him what animal he would be if he could be one. Often you will get short answers from a confused person that will give you little insight.

You want to get a feel for the candidate’s personality because it’s important when evaluating for cultural fit, but realize over the course of the interview it will come out naturally. For example, if a person decided to really think hard through a question or turn a question into a conversation – this is a display of their personality

Questions That Lead to Unhelpful Information

While the interviewer in power may be tempted to ask crazy, unique questions, he should be careful of ones that will lead to answers that get him nowhere. Asking them a riddle doesn’t help him understand whether they have the skills and abilities needed for the job.

Instead, determine the specific skills you are looking for and create a structured behavior interview. Ask the same questions for each candidate to keep the grading rubric consistent for each. Base the questions around a particular set of skills.