Spotting Red Flags When Hiring A Distant Assistant

Hiring the perfect Distant Assistant candidate for a position is hard enough as it is. Some candidates can look great on paper, yet perform badly once they have the job. Here are some ways to identify bad hires and spot red flags when hiring a Distant Assistant. 

Spotting Red Flags When Hiring a Distant Assistant
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5 Ways that can help you discern a good Distant Assistant candidate from a bad one

1. Spotting Non-Verbal Cues

Arriving Late for the Interview

If a candidate shows up late for an interview, and they haven’t given any prior notice on why they were late, that’s a red flag. This could possibly mean that they aren’t good at prioritizing, or maintaining a schedule.

It could also mean that they tend to take time for granted, or that they aren’t taking the job seriously. This could be an issue in the long run.

Inconsistencies in Choosing a Career Path

A candidate who isn’t able to stick with one career path may cause trouble. This may mean they get bored with repetitive tasks, or that they lack the right abilities for the job.

They also might have attitude problems which could lead to resignation or termination in the future.

Lacking Energy

If the applicant lacks energy during the interview, this could mean that they’re not excited about the job. They might also have lots of other activities which are using up their energy.

They might not be able to perform their tasks and finish on time since they lack the energy to do so, and might cause issues with turning over on deadlines.

Spotting Red Flags When Hiring a Distant Assistant
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Unprofessional Appearance

A candidate who does not dress appropriately for an interview is an indication that they do not value the job being offered. It could also mean that they lack respect for the interviewer and/or the job itself.

Regardless if the job requires a work-from-home set-up or a physical one, dressing professionally is a sign that the applicant is eager to impress and perform.


Slouching is an indication of laziness, lack of confidence, and lack of interest. If an applicant does this during an interview, this could mean that they are disinterested and could care less.

An unconfident person may not be able to perform tasks which may seem a little daunting. Employers would definitely want someone who is confident and sharp.

Spotting Red Flags When Hiring a Distant Assistant
Photo by Andrea Piacquadio from Pexels

No Eye Contact

This is another sign of lack of confidence. It could also mean that they are hiding something, and could mean that they are not trustworthy.

However, it could also mean that they are easily distracted by their surroundings, and in a WFH setting, this could mean trouble. There are a lot of distractions at home, and the candidate might not be able to filter out distractions.


Signs of a good candidate:

  • An applicant who sits up straight and leans slightly forward.
  • A candidate who is appropriately dressed.
  • A person who makes eye contact.

2. Do Roleplays

An employer or interviewer can ascertain if an applicant is a good fit for the job if they do roleplays with them. Situations about work, like how to handle a problem or dealing with a customer can be good examples.

If the candidate cannot perform or act out what they put in their resumes, that is not a good sign.

3. Personality Profiling

One of the parts of a job interview is personality profiling. This is done to make sure that the candidate is a good fit for the company. 

Among other things, the applicant’s traits, characteristics, and attitude are all measured to see if they fit company values.

4. Background Checks

Background checks should be performed for the following reasons:

Safety and reputation

A candidate who had transgressions from their previous place of employment does not bode well for a future employer. They may cause trouble with their future co-workers or even endanger the company’s relationship with their clients.

Verification of Credentials

It’s very easy to fake documents, so a background check must be conducted to verify these documents passed by an applicant. It also means that whatever they place on their resume are their true skills.

5. Asking the Right Questions

An interviewer need not ask a lot of questions. An applicant can be assessed with the right questions, and here are some examples of the questions to ask during an interview.

Effective Communication

An applicant who can answer concisely, is attentive, and confident is a good communicator. This is a green flag especially if an employer is hiring a remote worker.

Team Culture

A candidate who does well working with a team is also a good sign. There are certain tasks which must be done by a group, and if the interviewee works well with a group of people, this is a good sign that they’re a good fit for the company.

Time Management

People who know how to prioritize and manage their schedule well are strong contenders. This means that they know how to handle tasks which are time-sensitive, and will be able to deliver well before their deadline.


A candidate who can adapt well to changes in the company, whether in management, schedules, or work environment is gearing up to be a good fit. This means that they do not allow these changes to get in the way of work, and that they have the capabilities to work around such changes.


If an applicant works well with people from all walks of life and from different cultures, that’s a good sign. It means that they use these differences to bring together different skills while working towards a common goal.

Growth Potential

An employer or interviewer can spot someone who is willing to grow, willing to accept feedback and change accordingly. These applicants usually state their desire to move up the company ladder and learn new skills within the company.


A good applicant always has the potential to become a leader. This can be seen in their critical thinking skills and capacity to empower their co-workers. If a candidate takes initiative in certain critical situations, that’s already a sign that they can perform well as a leader.


It’s easy to spot red flags. An interviewer should just keep in mind these five clues, so that they can assess and gauge the applicant if they are perfect for the job.

Spotting Red Flags When Hiring a Distant Assistant
Photo by Andrea Piacquadio from Pexels

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Jaime Jay

About Jaime Jay

Meet Jaime Jay – a man who wears many hats, and wears them all admirably. He's a master connector, an entrepreneur extraordinaire, and a published author who knows how to get things done.

Before he found his way to the business world, Jaime served his country as a brave paratrooper in the U.S. Army. But that's just the beginning of his many accomplishments.

He's the founder of the renowned Bottleneck Distant Assistant Services firm, and his book "Quit Repeating Yourself" has become a must-read for entrepreneurs everywhere.

When he's not busy building his empire, you can find him on his beloved Harley Davidson, cruising through the countryside and taking in the invigorating effects of Uitwaaien – a Dutch practice that involves facing the wind to boost health and relieve stress.

He enjoys spending his free time outside building stuff with his wife, Nikita the dog and their two kittens (for now at least) Tommy and Tater.

He is ‘over-the-moon’ happily married to his wonderful wife Sara, his amazing daughter, Jessica, who is serving our country as a United States Army soldier. Jaime and Sara are the proud grand parents of two beautiful little girls.


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