10 Questions you should ask in a Job Interview
Job Interviews are stressful enough. You are so worried about answering their questions, that when they ask if you have any questions, your mind is completely blank. Yet, every advice about job interviews say the same thing, you should ask questions. But what if you cannot think of a single question to ask? Then what?
Well, here is a list of ten questions that you should ask in a Job Interview. Whether you can’t think of a question, or are afraid to ask the one you have in mind, you can always start with these. After all, any information you can get is helpful, right?
You can also right down the questions that you want to answers to. This also shows that you come prepared for the interview.
1. What skills and experiences make an ideal candidate?
Asking this question, and asking it earlier gives you an edge in the interview over the other candidates. The reason behind it being that this question forces the interviewer to reveal the ideal candidate they have in mind for the position, as well as what kind of skills and experiences they value. Hence, you can project or highlight those skills and experiences throughout the interview. Basically, armed with this information you can project yourself as the ideal candidate that they want. They wouldn’t want to pass on their ideal candidate will they?
2. How would you describe a typical day and week in this position? What are the responsibilities of the position?
This question gives you more of an insider look at the position. It will let you know that amount of responsibilities and workload that is expected of you. In doing so, the interviewer will invertedly let you know what your work day is going to be like, and then you can decide for yourself if that is to your liking or not.
3. What is the single largest problem facing your staff?
This question forces the interviewer to imagine you working there and as a team member. It imprints an image onto their mind, so that when it comes time to pick the candidate that they think would fit, they immediately and subconsciously conjure up this image.
In answering this question, the interviewer may also (subconsciously or not) say a lot about the company’s work culture. How they answer the question and how they speak about their staff may also say a lot about how the management views their employees, i.e. do they respect them, or think of them as equals, etc.
4. What do you like/don’t like about working here?
Similar to the last question, this question speaks a lot about the company’s work culture. Depending on what the interviewer likes or doesn’t like about the company may factor in whether or not you want to work there. For example, does the interviewer sound irritated or exasperated when talking about the company? If they are struggling to find things they like about the company, chances are they may not be happy here, or they may not like the work culture themselves.
5. What constitutes as success in this company? How does one advance in the company?
This question will reveal to you what the company values in their employees, and more importantly how you will be rewarded. Do they define success by numbers? By effort? If numbers are all that matters, then it is a very competitive work environment. If it is effort, then the work pace might be a little laid back. This will indicate to you how you can get ahead in the company and whether or not you want to.
6. Do you offer continuing education or professional training?
This question indicates a lot about how much the company values their employees. Are they invested in their employees to help them improve themselves and gain more knowledge and experience? Will they support you if you decide to expand your horizons or learn more?
This question also indicates to the interviewer that you want to grow and would be open studying more and learning more skills. It may indicate to them that they will be getting an asset with you.
7. Can you tell me about the department/team I’ll be working with?
This question is very important, as it lets you know beforehand what kind or team or manager you’ll be working with. Will you get along with these people? Who will you be reporting to? Or who will be reporting to you? It gives you a more in depth look at the position and this insight might help you decide whether or not this job is for you.
8. What can you tell me about the company’s plan of growth?
This question gives you more insight about the company. It let you know what this company is like and whether or not this company is on a growth trajectory. It indicates how invested the company is in growth and how fast they intend to grow? As well as whether or not you would have a part in the company’s growth? It they don’t have a plan or are unwilling to share it will you, it shows that the company is reactive and that it just exists and is happy where it is, which may indicate that they might not be interested in growth.
9. Is this a new position? Who previously held this position?
Asking this question will let you know more about the job and what your future there might be like. If this is a new position, then you know that the company is growing and that more jobs are being created.
As to asking who previously held this position, it may indicate to you that what may be next for you if you do that this position. If the previous person got promoted, then you know that you have a fast growth trajectory in this job. If they got fired, why? Was is because they were not meeting expectations? It may make you question, what the company’s expectation may be. Diod they leave, then why? Was it because they got a better position elsewhere? Or were they unhappy here in this position?
10. What is the next step in this process? Would you like a list of references?
Asking this question lets them know that you are open to the next step and that you want to continue ahead. It also indicates that you are open to communication. The interviewer’s response to this question may also let you know whether or not you are in the running and how many other people are there with you. It also lets you know what to expect next. Offering them a list of references also lets them know that you come prepared, as well as the fact that you are confident of yourself.
If you are hesitant to ask these questions, keep in mind that you are (or at least should be) interviewing the company as much as they are interviewing you. It is better to come across as aggressive and selective now (both of which can be a positive in the right position), rather than accepting a job just because they selected you and then realize that this is not what you wanted. Also, remember that interviewers want the candidates to ask question; it lets them know how invested the candidate is.