May 6, 2013

12 (Snarky) Questions That I Really Want to Ask the Hiring Manager

Female Student Reluctant To Raise Her HandI’ve never enjoyed jumping through hoops. There’s something about it that’s too in-genuine for my taste.

This is why my favorite job interviews are those where you sit down and have an unforced conversation (that’s how I got my current job), and my least favorite are those that require you to give a perfectly rehearsed performance.

Speaking of rehearsed, let’s move on to my least favorite part of my least favorite type of interview: the questions I’m supposed to ask you in order to prove that I’m a worthy candidate. I’ve been around long enough to know exactly what I’m supposed to ask and why. And you’ve been around long enough to know exactly how you’re supposed respond. But we both know that neither of us is saying exactly what’s on our mind.

So, just for today, let’s pretend that it’s all right to ask exactly what’s on my mind and, for the sake of fairness, let’s hear your honest answers in the comments below.

“Do you have any questions for me?” … “Why yes, yes I do, and here they are:”

“Why is it that you can be 30 minutes late to this interview but I must be 10 to 15 minutes early?”

“I know you’re judging me, but why do I get the feeling that you want me to mess up? Don’t you want to find the right candidate and be done with the hiring process?”

“Why am I expected to send a flawless, perfectly timed follow-up when I probably won’t hear back from you at all if I don’t get the job offer?”

“How convincing was I when I said that in 5 years I hoped to be working my way up the corporate ladder at your company? Don’t you think it would be a bit naive of me to have this plan when I haven’t yet worked a single day there?”

“Do you like my outfit? I spent an hour picking it and $20 getting it dry cleaned.”

“I’m sorry, I didn’t know I was interviewing at Google. Wouldn’t it have been more effective to ask me an on-the-spot question related to my job than that random brain teaser?”

“Why did you spend more time checking your phone during the interview than looking me in the eye?”

“Since you’re going to be my boss, why don’t you tell me what your biggest weakness is?”

“Why did you hesitate when I asked you what you like about working here?”

“Did my sweaty handshake give away how nervous I am? Sorry, I know it was gross.”

“Be completely honest, what are the crappy parts of this job?”

“I really want this job. Are you going to hire me?”

There you have it — what’s really on my mind by the end of our interview. Now it’s your turn to share — what are you really thinking during all of this?

Read more in Hiring Process

Rachel Dotson manages content and community for the job board distribution service ZipRecruiter's mission is to make hiring faster, easier, and cheaper, so recruiters can allocate their time and energy where it's needed most.
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