First of all, give yourself a pat on the back. The hardest step these days is even just getting in the door for an interview! So many recruiters nowadays use computer programs to parse your resume and look out for any keywords – the more times those keywords appear, the higher your resume goes in the pile. But that’s another article! So when the tables are turned at the end of an interview and you’re asked, “Do you have any questions for me?” The last thing you want to say is “No, thanks!” At best you might come off as having subpar intelligence, at worst, disinterested in the role. So, what questions should you be asking for a successful interview?
1. Who do you think would be the ideal candidate for this role and how do I compare?
This is a quick, polite way of figuring out if the company really does suit you and if you suit them. The last thing you want to do is waste time interviewing for the wrong role or company.
2. Who will I be reporting to? Do I have more than one boss?
It’s important to know the level of management that you’ll be facing if you get the job and what the pecking order is. If you have a chance to do so, it would be beneficial to have a sit down with your prospective boss before you accept the position.
3. How has this position evolved?
Because you want to know if this role is a dead-end or a stepping stone.
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4. Who do you consider are your major competitors? How are you better?
This question shows that you’re already thinking about rising to the challenge of healthy market competition and willing to hit some big goals.
5. Beyond the hard skills required to perform this role, what soft skills would serve this position best?
Basically, you’re asking what kind of values they’re looking for in terms of company culture and management style. This is as much a fact-finding question for you as it is for them.
6. What do you like most about working for this company?
Everyone likes to talk about themselves – even interviewers. So this question brings about a sense of camaraderie as well as finding out more about the workplace culture.
7. Can you give me an example of how I could collaborate with my manager?
This gives you the opportunity to find out about the company’s management style. Is it an inclusive place where everyone on the team, including the manager, work together for a common goal.
8. Can you tell me what steps need to be completed before your company can generate an offer?
Anything you can find out about the timeline of the hiring process is always good for. Specifying that you want to know about an offer as opposed to a decision is a smart move. A decision can be made whenever, but an offer relates directly to when the company will be sending out the contract.
9. What are the challenges of this position?
If the interviewer replies with “There aren’t any” then proceed with caution.
10. What information can I provide that would make hiring me an easy decision?
A cracker of a question and one that has personally gotten me most of the jobs I’ve interviewed for. It puts the ball back in their court and makes them really think about why they would go with another candidate.