How to be an Undercover Boss

How to be an Undercover Boss


I’m sure you’re aware of the TV programme sweeping across the UK and America, Undercover Boss. If you haven’t yet seen it, each week a Managing Director goes undercover in their own company as a trainee to see the flaws, turn them around and improve – the sky’s the limit.

Not a bad idea if you know how to fix the flaws and are willing to put the weight on your shoulders. We are all aware of the flaws within our own company or team and I can guarantee everyone wishes that they could speak about the issues and have them resolved, but don’t know where to turn.

Employee satisfaction is a major part of running a successful team or business, keeping moral high and motivation flowing is an essential part of getting the most out of your employees. There is a multitude of ways to do this which may include team nights out, prizes for recognition, or competitions in the office to name just a few.  Unfortunately this may keep moral up but it will not address underlying issues your employee may be worrying about.  You never know, an idea that has been brewing in their mind may be just the answer you have been looking for!

One idea is an anonymous suggestion box where employees can write down any thoughts and ideas with the confidence that their manager won’t know it was them.  However, if you are a master of recognising hand writing or have a small team, you could always create an email account with an anonymous email address and let your employees email to you instead.

You never know what you may discover in the inbox, but small simple changes could make all the difference.

Keeping hold of members of your team is important and even more vital in the current climate.  The main reasons cited by candidates looking to change job are, lack of recognition, lack of training and development and too much workload.

You may discover that members of your team are feeling stress or pressure due to the workload and hiring a new employee may just be the answer.  A contractor would be ideal if you have a project coming up and need an extra pair of hands or a brand new employee to join your team if you are continually feeling the burden of more to do.  You’ll be amazed at how much a manageable workload can improve motivation and output within your team.

If so, all the lovely people at Langley James are here to help with your recruitment needs – and any other advice you may be looking for!

We will recruit someone worth recruiting, whether it be for your IT Support Team or Development.

To find out more about how we can help with IT recruitment needs, give Langley James a call on  0207 788 6600, join the conversation on our Facebook page ( or on Twitter (@ITrecruitment).

Six Quirky Questions Asked During Interviews

Six Quirky Questions Asked During Interviews

Competition between candidates for IT vacancies and specific IT roles is at an all time high. As a result, employers can afford to be picky about the IT contractors and IT staff that they eventually choose to fill each position. Companies are now going to astonishing lengths in order to determine the stand out candidate for their vacant role.

Every candidate is familiar with the most common interview questions and, for many, an essential part of preparing for an interview will involve rehearsing answers to standard questions such as; what do you know about our company? Why did you leave your last job? What would you consider to be your biggest strength?

But how would you react if the person interviewing you asked you one of the following questions?

What song best describes your work ethic?

If we came to your house for dinner, what would you prepare for us?

Can you calculate the angle of the hands of a clock when the time is 11:50?

If you could pick two celebrities to be your parents who would you choose?

What is your favourite song? Can you perform it for us now?

What sort of kitchen utensil would you be?

Those are just a small selection of the bizarre questions candidates have faced when being interviewed for a new role. Some questions are designed to test logic and reasoning under pressure, some to give an indication of a candidate’s personality and some questions are designed to test creativity.

Interviewers have a relatively short period of time during which they must make an important decision about which candidate they wish to hire from a selection of seemingly identical applicants. Posing a peculiar question provides a way to distinguish between candidates, assuming the interviewer knows what sort of answer they are looking for. Conversely, candidates can learn a lot about potential employers from the questions they are asked during interviews.

The decision regarding whether or not to include such questions in interviews remains controversial, what do you think? Do obscure interview questions serve any purpose? What is the most bizarre question you have ever faced, or asked, in an interview? Join the conversation on our Facebook page ( or on Twitter (@ITrecruitment).

To find out how Langley James can help you to streamline your IT recruitment process please contact us on  0845 124 9555 or