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In the Words of Experts: Create an Equitable Interview Process

We asked experts for tried-and-true strategies to establish an equitable interview process and mitigate unconscious bias.



In my experience, consistency is key to getting the best outcomes when interviewing director candidates. As a Nomination and Governance Committee Chair, I start by insisting on a strong slate where every candidate meets our criteria - including our criteria for diversity. I then have the same people interview the final candidates, using an established list of questions as a guide, and evaluating each candidate with a standardized evaluation tool. I also like to keep the interviewing timeline tight. People have very different styles of advocacy, and it makes for better and more equitable discussions and decision-making when everyone on the interview panel has recently spoken with every candidate.

Headshot of Nanxi Liu

Nanxi Liu

Co-founder and Co-CEO, | Board Member,, Inc., CarLotz, Inc.                                                                                      

What’s been game changing for me is to institute a process where we always interview candidates from underrepresented groups first. This disrupts the unintentional bias of a "friends and family" recruitment process, which often excludes underrepresented groups. If we do not select them for a role, we articulate what skills they would need to be a better fit for the position. We then make sure that we only pursue other candidates with those skills. This way we can look at ourselves in the mirror and recognize and mitigate our biases head-on. 

Headshot of Dane Holmes

Dane E. Holmes

Chief Administrative Officer, KKR & Co., Inc. | Board Chair, StoryCorps