Questions to Ask in a Job Interview

Running a job interview with a stream of candidates coming through the door is tough. With so many people looking for work, it’s even more difficult to decipher who is the best candidate. From a candidate’s point of view, they also need to do their own interviewing. Don’t ask safe questions, be courageous and ask some of the tougher questions.

Questions to Ask in a Job Interview

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How Receptive is Your Company to Feedback?

The tyrannical manager is a fear every new employee has. Even if the manager is utterly incompetent, raise an eyebrow and you can expect the next six months to turn into a living hell. Ask your interviewer how they handle feedback put forward in a diplomatic fashion.

A good company should value feedback and actively use it when deciding how it should best proceed in the future.

What Frustrates You the Most as a Leader?

At first glance, this seems like a question directed towards finding out someone’s faults. It’s not. What this question says to an interviewer is you want to know how to best mould yourself to the company way of doing things. You might receive a plain answer about certain annoyances, but many managers enjoy using concrete anecdotes in their responses.

What are you Working on at the Moment, and how do you Interact with Your Staff?

This is a two-pronged question. The first part of the question shows an active interest in the company you’re applying to work with. It’s something every interview guide tells you to do as managers love candidates who take an active interest. To separate yourself from the competition, the second half of the question comes into play. It engages the subject on a deeper level. It also gives some feedback to you. If you ask the question and the interviewer meticulously digs through every aspect of the project, you know they’re the type to micromanage their staff.

How Does the Company Collaborate with Other Departments?

Another question which has two uses. Again, it indicates your interest in the company and how it works. But it also shows how much the company values collaboration.

It also unveils the inner workings of the company environment. If you’re someone who works well in a small team, less collaboration is the ideal environment for you, and vice-versa.

Does Your Company Celebrate Special Occasions?

Whilst it won’t necessarily put you ahead of the other candidates, it’s a good interview question to ask if you’re looking for a workplace which can let its hair down. Simply enquiring into whether they usually celebrate Christmas and birthdays can tell you everything you need to know about its perceptions and values.

What would be the Three Things People Say you do Really Well?

You’ve probably already answered this yourself. Ask it of your interviewer as he could soon work alongside you as a colleague. Now, you’re demonstrating interest in getting to know your potential peers.

Has Any of Your Staff Being Promoted in the Last Few Years?

Essential for showing you want to develop your career. Simply telling the interviewer you want to develop and challenge yourself isn’t enough. It’s a subtle way of highlighting this with a question about the company itself.

What is Your Company Working Towards?

Economic considerations are no longer just of relevance to upper management. You want to work for a company which plans for the future. A company without a growth plan could finish on its back, and with you out of a job. To an interviewer, it highlights your interest in the future and the development of the company.

How Do You Respond to Major Mistakes?

A suffocating manager stifles creativity and restricts you from trying new things. Asking about how the managers responded to a major mistake shows you whether this is the environment you want to work in. Ideally, you want a manager who will support you through the tough times, rather than reprimanding you for your mistake.

What Characteristics Do You Value in an Employee?

To put it simply, this tells you what the company wants to find in its candidate. It’s too late to tailor yourself to this ‘perfect’ employee in an interview. Yet the person interviewing you now knows you’re determined to toe the company line whilst bringing something of value to the business.

Author Bio: Mary Miller is creative writer and inspired person. She enjoys writing on topics including  education and college life. You can find many interesting things on her website and following her Twitter @MaryAdvisor

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  1. Very interesting post as most of the people won’t be knowing what to ask…


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