Posing the Right Questions at a Job Interview: The Guidelines

Career Fair

Quite frequently students are so fixated on trying to make their qualifications stand out and their personalities shine that they forget to show interest in the firm. Not asking the right questions at a job interview can be a huge detriment to your overall performance.

Of course, it is significant to introduce yourself in an impressive manner. However, an interview is not a one person’s monologue, and you need to prove that you do not just want to land a job, but want to learn more about the company’s problems and are willing to work on them.

When it is your turn to ask questions, you have to be prepared. In this article, I will discuss how you can do it right.

Why Should I Ask Questions?

Before delving deeper into the topic, first I would like to elaborate upon the necessity of posing questions during an interview process.

Today’s marketplace is relentlessly competitive. More people have gained access to higher education, and more high school graduates choose to commit themselves to four-year institutions which diversifies and fills up the pool of potential employees. Therefore, it no longer suffices to have a degree, but one needs to establish a match with the company of choice.

Taking an active interest in company’s matters can not only confirm your enthusiasm, but also highlight your credentials and competence. Asking tough questions shows that you are aware of the industry pitfalls and did your homework on the company.

This approach will also help you as a prospective candidate to comprehend if this job meets your expectations. You do not want to change occupations every month, so you need to ensure that what you are getting yourself into is worth your while.

Figuring out the Basics

There are two fundamental questions you need to ask before agreeing to a position. The first one is who your boss is and what managerial style they prefer. The second one is about your duties.

There is nothing worse than working for a person whose leadership frustrates you. If, for instance, your boss believes in multitasking, and you despise the whole concept of it, you will fail to find a common language. Moreover, not knowing who to report to can cause chaos and serious issues at the onset of your career. It might be too embarrassing to ask about it later, so you stand a chance of becoming accountable to everyone and to none.

Not knowing your exact responsibilities can lead you astray as well, as you might imagine. If you do not have a clear vision of what exactly it is you have to do, you may end up getting grilled by your boss for disregarding an important task or even fired. Moreover, other employees may start exploiting you for their benefit. Make sure you write down a list of your duties and don’t get tangled up in trivialities.

Understanding the Prospects

Firstly, questions about career opportunities prove ambition and a desire to commit to the company long-term. Secondly, you do not want to work for a firm for years before eventually finding out that there is no way to climb up that corporate ladder.

You would like to get a firsthand account and ask your manager about their career. It will not only flatter them, but also provide you with a real-life story of success in your selected company. If your interlocutor is eloquent enough, you may also find out what qualities were most conducive to their mastery.

You can then underscore those attributes in your discussion. There are many candidates with the right degrees. However, there are not so many with the right personalities.

Establishing the Priorities

The objective of an interview, at least the first one, is to prove an interviewer why you are the most suitable and valuable person for the job. Asking about the company’s targets and priorities shows the employer your determination to become an asset. This is the best question you could raise to boost your image.

Moreover, thanks to this query you can better envisage what your daily tasks will involve and how you are going to spend a big chunk of your life. It will help you realize if this is a kind of job you will feel comfortable doing on a regular basis.

It is also essential to have this info for your career development. You will know what projects need your special attention and best efforts, and when you can delegate or do a bare minimum. It is wrong to assume that you must dedicate yourself to every single task. This approach, although laudable, can cause a burnout and incapacity to handle the challenges that will earn you a raise and even a promotion.

Find out the Best and the Worst

It will be both sweet and deliberate to ask your manager about the most enjoyable aspects of the job. As all the previous questions, it will assist you in deciding whether it is an impeccable fit for you, as well as establish a personal connection with your interviewer.

Inquiring about the worst features of the position makes it possible for you to imagine the worst-case scenario. If it is few vacation days, and you are an avid traveler, maybe, this job is not the best opportunity for you. If, however, it is sometimes dealing with angry people, and you are a communications master, then it may not be a big deal for you.

Make Arrangements for the Future

If you ran out of ideas, you can simply inquire about the further process. You can wonder when the results will be published or when you need to come for the next stage. It will display your ability to keep cool in stressful situations and plan in advance.

However, it is better not to sound too brash. Saying something along the lines like “I will be happy to start work asap” may have a positive as well as a negative effect. It is better to withhold this audacity and simply stress your principal skills one more time, expressing a hope for further cooperation.

Watch Yourself

Finally, it is critical to look good and behave naturally. If you are too stiff or vice versa too bouncy, it can damage the impression you intend to create.

I would recommend you recording yourself in a mock interview and then watching it with people who can give a critical evaluation of your performance. This training will help you feel more at east at a real interview. 

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