April 1, 2013

Important Questions to Ask During an Interview

Question MarkAn interview for a new job isn’t just about you being asked a bunch of questions by a recruiter or hiring manager. Remember, you are interviewing the position as well; so, you shouldn’t feel awkward asking a few questions of your own. Think about it: Most often the person conducting the interview always asks, “Do you have any questions?”

Start the interview being a little easy on the recruiter. Ask him or her directly what you can do to make the process easier for the person. Not only will this set a positive tone for the entire interview but will give you a bit of insight into the personality of the recruiter and give you a good foundation of information to start with.

While it might seem like being interviewed is something that is all about you, it is important that you make sure that you are a good fit for the position and the company. This means that this interview is actually all about the company. You need to find out what is important to the company and how you can make it possible for the company to reach its performance goals. Make it a point during the interview to specifically ask what is really important to the company for the first three months of your being a part of the company. How that question is answered will help you understand the specific problem areas that you can discuss as part of your ability to help the company.

If a question happens to come to mind throughout the course of the interview, ask it. You may feel a little uncomfortable at first, but most recruiters actually prefer that an interview be more of an interactive conversation rather than a one-sided interrogation. Find ways to ask questions about the company based on the answers that you have given to other questions.

Make sure that you are prepared with at least three compelling questions to ask when the interview comes to a close. Again, the interviewer will ask if you have any questions. If you don’t have any questions ready it will look like you did not prepare yourself well enough for the position, or that you aren’t serious about wanting the job. Don’t ask questions about things that can be researched, or that are highly generic to any position. Make sure that you are asking questions that will make a difference in your understanding of the position and how your performance within that position will impact the company and your success.

The following are good examples of questions that you should ask as a part of the interview process:

  • How does this department and position fit in with the company’s plan for the next five years?
  • What is the method for measuring my leadership performance and enhancing my responsibilities? Who will be doing this evaluating?
  • Are there any major threats to the success of the company now or in the near future?
  • Now that we have talked, do you have any doubts about me or concerns regarding my performance that you would like to discuss further?

Read more in Interview Process

Marks’ stories have also been published in a variety of newspaper, magazine and online formats including The Arizona Republic, The Daily Herald, Arizona Foothills Magazine and various classroom magazines of Scholastic Inc. Service is her passion, writing is her platform and uplifting and inspiring the community is her purpose. Marks received a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism and Mass Communication from Arizona State University.
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