Make the most of this key opportunity by asking thoughtful questions
Toward the end of most job interviews, the interviewer will give you the opportunity to ask questions. You must ask a least one question; to do otherwise often signals the interviewer that you don’t really have any interest in the job or the company.
Questions you might ask at a job interview:
- Can you describe a typical day for someone in this position?
- What is the top priority of the person who accepts this job?
- What are the day-to-day expectations and responsibilities of this job?
- How will my leadership responsibilities and performance be measured? And by whom? How often?
- Can you describe the company’s management style?
- Can you discuss your take on the company’s corporate culture?
- What are the company’s values?
- How would you characterize the management philosophy of this organization? Of your department?
- What is the organization’s policy on transfers to other divisions or other offices?
- Are lateral or rotational job moves available?
- Does the organization support ongoing training and education for employees to stay current in their fields?
- What do you think is the greatest opportunity facing the organization in the near future? The biggest threat?
- Why did you come to work here? What keeps you here?
- How is this department perceived within the organization?
- Is there a formal process for advancement within the organization?
- What are the traits and skills of people who are the most successful within the organization?
- On the flip side, do not ask questions where the answer is obvious or readily available — or when the topic has already been thoroughly discussed in the interview and asking it demonstrates that you failed to listen to earlier information. And never ask about salary and benefit issues until the employer raises those subjects.
- Other inadvisable questions:
- Me first: What you can do for me instead do what I can do for you.
- Questions that reveal insecurities, such as questions phrased in terms of job security.
- Questions that reveal weaknesses. (Will I have to meet a lot of deadlines?)
- Questions asked in a confrontational tone.