Before a job interview, you prepare to answer various questions about your expertise, skills and career goals. Are you ready, however, when the interviewer asks, “Do you have any questions for me?”
Your response always should be “yes.”
"The very process of asking questions completely changes the dynamic of the interview and the hiring manager's perception of you," Teri Hockett, a career strategist, told Business Insider. "Asking questions also gives you the opportunity to discover details that you might not have otherwise unveiled."
What Should You Ask?
There are dozens of questions you could potentially ask an interviewer. Some may be answered naturally during the interview. Be prepared with backup questions, but don’t go overboard. You want to ask insightful questions that express your interest in the position, not overwhelm them. Your questions should reflect that you have thought about how you might fit into the position, team and corporate structure.
Depending on the position, you also could ask industry-specific questions that indicate your understanding of the role.
Here are five questions for interviewers that are good starting points.
- Can you walk me through a day in this job?
Answers to this question can provide insight about department operations, schedules and current projects. You also may learn how you might interact with teammates and other departments. If the job requires a combination of skills, how often will you perform the tasks in which you are most interested?
- What are some challenges I might face in this position?
Indeed.com says this question helps you “get a clear-eyed view of what this job is like — why it’s hard and rewarding at the same time. Getting your interviewers’ perspectives on potential hurdles will give you a holistic picture.”
- What would I be able to accomplish within the first few months?
This question “shows that you’re coming in focused and ready to contribute from day one,” according to Careersidekick.com. You also may learn more about the pace of the department and how quickly you will be expected to learn and produce results.
- How do you measure success in this role?
It’s important to know the company’s metric for success and how often they measure performance indicators. What skills will you need to do well and what might you be expected to achieve? The answer also may indicate what it takes to advance within the company.
- Do you have any concerns or questions about my qualifications?
While reflecting your interest and commitment to the role, you’re also proactively addressing potential uncertainties. It’s the question you save for last to help determine how you compare with the company’s expectations or alongside other candidates.
One last word of advice from The Cut: “An interview doesn’t just help the employer decide whether you are right for the position. It also helps you decide whether to accept the role. Ask questions you really care about to get the most from the conversation.”
Need help with your job search? Contact the placement professionals at TPD.