By Catherine Rice
You’re more likely to hear James Shani’s favorite question around a campfire than in a job interview.
Shani, CEO of Los Angeles-based digital content company Madison+Vine, who was named to Forbes’ 2017 30 Under 30, likes to ask prospective employees an unusual question during interviews:
“One of my favorite questions is, ‘Tell me about your soul,'” Shani told Business Insider. He said it reveals a lot about the person and helps him determine whether that candidate will fit into his company and work well with the team.
“It’s interesting because you get a couple of different kinds of responses. Sometimes people are completely thrown off and they’ve never thought about it,” he said.
If a person has thought about it, he said, they have a sense of ambition and direction in terms of their career. “If someone is always trying to grow, and is always mindful of their growth, and is really disciplined and an A player … then they have thought about that question in some way. I look for people that are reflective and disciplined, and really mindful of who they are and who they’re not,” he said.
A proponent of self-improvement and personal growth, Shani believes entrepreneurs should constantly be thinking about “improving and growing as an individual.” He also holds his employees to that standard — a Tony Robbins fan, Shani sends all of his 20 employees to Robbins’ “Unleash the Power Within” event, which he says is a “game-changer.”
“Everything [Robbins] preaches is all about mastering your personal psychology,” said Shani.