“So, do you have any questions?”
You will hear that at some point in almost every job interview. There’s lots of advice out there suggesting that it’s best to ask something and not go for a lame “No, you answered everything already” cop out. But what should you ask?
QUICK TIP: Questions about salary, benefits or holidays are a no-no. The same goes for anything that could have been answered by a quick internet search.
Instead, here are some questions that will make you look thoughtful and engaged to the interviewer.
1. How would you define success in this role?
2. What KPIs will this role be measured on?
3. What one thing could I do to have the biggest impact after starting?
Questions of this type not only give you a clear idea of what is required by the job but also show the interviewer that you are enthusiastic and results-focused. 2 and 3 are particularly good because they get more specific.
4. Is there any part of my experience or qualifications that you have reservations about?
5. Based on what we’ve talked about, what would I need to learn in order to succeed in this role?
These questions show that you are comfortable talking about any perceived weaknesses. If there are any concerns, it is much better for you to be able to answer them than for them to play on the interviewer’s mind. Be warned, though, you will need to have solid answers to anything that gets brought up.
6. What do you enjoy most about working for this company?
7. Can you tell me a bit about the work and company culture here?
Questions like this will give you an idea of what it is like to work for the company and allow you to decide if you would be a good fit.
8. How does the company support professional development?
9. How would my long-term progression at the company look?
It’s good to show that you are thinking of the future and of potentially committing that future to the company. This is also important information that you should consider before taking a job. It’s a danger sign if the interviewer doesn’t have an answer for this type of question. It’s also great to show willingness to develop your skills, as no one wants a stagnating employee.
10. What are the immediate priorities for whoever takes on this role?
11. How autonomous will I be?
12. What budget will I have control over?
Getting down to brass tacks shows that you are taking things seriously. It’s also important for you to have this kind of information to fully understand the position in question. Job titles can be vague, but these questions can help you figure out exactly how much responsibility is on offer.
13. What challenges is the company facing right now?
14. What makes this company different from its competitors?
You may be a great candidate for the open position, but it’s also important for the recruiter to know that you interested in the company as a whole, rather than just your own job.
15. What are the next steps?
Asking this question suggests to the interviewer that you are confident about getting to the next interview stage. You will leave the interviewer with the perception that you are proceeding anyway. It is also quite helpful for you to plan ahead.
During your job search, it’s easy to get caught up on what interviewers will ask you so don’t forget to prepare some questions of your own. Think about what’s really important to you in a job and employer and focus on that. The questions above are just a set of directions you can go in, so adapt them to your own purposes when preparing for a job interview.
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